By Sakhile Vanqa
That knot. It’s very familiar and I recognize it as soon as I realize that I have to move somewhere else soon. I felt it when I left high school and went to my first college, and I felt it when I transferred to CCAD. I have moved around so much in my life and have exchanged more hellos and goodbyes than I honestly believe is healthy. Though it can sometimes be hard, there are a few ways that I have been able to deal with the loss of old faces in the transition to the new.
It took me some time to understand that when you leave, it isn’t goodbye forever. This is not to say that when you leave you need to act completely cool and casual about it: one-handed hugs to some, nods or hair flips to everyone else. Go ahead and shed a tear or two, hug your family and friends for a second longer than you usually do. Sure, you’ll see them again. It just won’t be as soon as it’s been.
Technology helps a lot to bridge the gap between the times spent apart. My favorites right now are Skype and FaceTime. My mum is still getting used to using her Apple product. If any of you know what it’s like teaching a parent how to use the latest technology it can be quite taxing on the spirit. Adorable at times, but mostly taxing.
It also helps in catalyzing mini reunions! I remember being in Miami with my family on vacation, and I saw that a classmate I hadn’t seen in three years post a status about being in Miami too. We hadn’t talked much since we graduated high school, but being so far away from what was home, we decided to connect again. Being in Miami with old friends at the end of December while running on old memories and creating new ones was brilliant.
Recording those memories so that they are somewhat immortalized helps a great deal as well. Everyone has their own way of doing this, like journaling, taking photos, or even scrapbooking. You may scoff at that last one, but you’re heading to art school, buddy, and we scrapbook when we feel the need to scrapbook. Shamelessly.
One of my closest friends gave me a small scrapbook for my 16th birthday, which I still have. Don’t judge me.
It was initially meant for me to write down thoughts and poetry, but slowly began to hold bits and pieces from my travels. I have notes, receipts, and even the boarding pass of the flight that I took into Savannah before starting at SCAD.
Holding on isn’t bad, but it shouldn’t stunt your growth in this new chapter of your life. If there’s one thing you shouldn’t do, it’s gauge your transition according to someone else’s—they may just have an easier way of adjusting. Make as many friends as you can. Whether you join clubs, or find you’re one of the many skateboarders that use the quad as your playground, it will definitely help with settling down.
Sakhile Vanqa is a junior majoring in Cinematic Arts who enjoys humor, cycling, and aspires to shoot for National Geographic.
The Life at CCAD blog brings prospective students and their families into ongoing conversation with CCAD students, admissions counselors, and financial aid staff—including occasional visits from other members of the CCAD family.