Why I Left Arizona
So I'm going to talk about something that may offend some of my friends, but I know that there are also people that completely agree with me. Either way, this is just my experience and my opinion. I want to talk a little bit about my experience at the University of Arizona and why I left, and am glad I did. Don't get me wrong, I had some of the most amazing experiences and memories from that place but leaving was what I needed and many others need too. I am in no way saying that people shouldn't go to this school, if you are able to find a good balance and you have your head on straight then this isn't directed towards you. I have friends that have expressed these feelings and attitudes about the school. It's also not about the school itself, but the lifestyle that many people live that's the problem.
Let's go back to how it all starts, freshman year. If you know anything about the University of Arizona, you know that Greek life is huge. As a freshman I came to Arizona really excited to leave high school behind and joined an amazing house. I was living in a 700 person dorm, with a majority of the people being in Greek life. I was beyond happy to be in such an amazing sorority, I want to note that my sorority or Greek life never pushes drinking or any of these behaviors I've observed on others, but it was a part of the lifestyle at the school whether you are Greek or not. Guys in fraternities do drink a lot, but sororities have really strict policies on not promoting drinking or pushing it on the new members which is actually really nice, so if you do want to party it's completely up to you. This post is going to be long enough as it is, so if you guys want to have me write a blog on Greek life and my experience with it then just like this post or comment below.
I think that most of us associate college with partying, experimenting, drinking and freedom from our parents. We are given the opportunity to try all these different things without the repercussions of going home to parents scolding you or grounding you and I think that many people don't know how to use their new freedom in a responsible way, myself included. With a school that has great weather, there also comes pool parties, the need to look a certain way, and an excessive amount of partying. While I was in Arizona for spring break I was reminded of why I left and it's because I couldn't keep up with the lifestyle, maintain a social life, get good grades, and be mentally stable. My friends and I talked about how just because you're in college that doesn't mean you're not an addict. I see so many people who take drugs, and drink excessively and say they aren't addicted and they'll quit after college. The truth is if you can't quit now and say it's because you don't want or need to, you're addicted and it will more than likely continue even after you graduate.
During my time there I felt a lot of pressure to drink heavily, be skinny, wear certain clothes, go out and do all these different things because that's what everyone else was doing. I think that just the environment in Arizona definitely promotes this kind of lifestyle. It's like trying to do school and get good grades when your experience at the school is like you're on spring break in Cabo, and the whole time you're expected to be able to do it all. At one point I was going out or drinking 2-3 times a week. When you add me having the worst hangovers to that, it's like my whole week was wasted (haha, no pun intended). While visiting my friends during spring break I realized I could never realistically have kept up with that lifestyle. This reassured me that leaving was the best thing for my mental and physical health and also my academic career. The sad thing about so many of the people at this school is that they don't think they have a problem or they think they aren't alcoholics or addicted to drugs. Again, this isn't about everyone. I know so many people still at the school who get great grades and life a really balanced healthy lifestyle, but there are also a large amount of people who struggle. I think the saddest thing for me was visiting and seeing some people who are near and dear to my heart experiencing addiction.
In the end my grades were not what they should of been, and I wasn't happy with that. I wanted to do good in school but I hated missing out on what all my friends were doing and unfortunately I couldn't do both. I wasn't going to just stay in Arizona, wasting my parents money trying to retake classes and do better because school wasn't the only problem. I knew that if I stayed there I would still be a person I didn't like or wasn't happy with. Regardless of all the happy looking pictures I had, there was more going on. Again, I had some really amazing memories and made some really amazing friends but in the end it wasn't enough to keep me there. A couple of my friends also transferred at the same time as I did as well.
Since leaving I've had an interesting experience. During the summer I didn't miss my friends as much since everyone was apart and I was working a lot of hours as a nanny most days. I've visited Arizona twice since moving back home, but both times I've been reassured that I made the right choice moving back here. I finally know what I want to do with my life and career, I'm close to my family, I'm healthier and overall happier. I cannot emphasize enough how much being sober can make a difference in your life. Whether you do drugs, drink or whatever else, when you stop you can see the world so much clearer. Slowly things make more sense and you'll realize how amazing life is all on its own. There's nothing wrong with going out for a drink or partying occasionally but know if you need to do that to have fun or just to get through the day then something is wrong. I know you're wondering if I ever had a problem and I'm going to say no because drugs are really not my scene and drinking wasn't something I ever felt the need to do, but I did do it because that's what everyone else was doing and it was fun.
I know this blog is all over the place, but I've had a lot on my mind lately. I know you guys probably want to hear about my spring break trip but to be honest I don't know what to say. I wrote two posts when in the moment I was really emotional and upset about things that took place over my break. Now that I'm home and read what I wrote I don't think I can bring myself to post them. We shall see. Anyways, I want to remind you guys that just because something doesn't work for me that doesn't mean it won't work for you. Going to school in Arizona is great for a lot of people, I'm just not one of them.
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As always, hope you guys are having a fabulous day. It's so beautiful out where I live and I'm loving every second of this amazing weather.