The last two years that I’ve lived in Seattle, I’ve been required to live in the dorms, which were fun years but definitely had its expiration date. Recently, I moved into a house with 6 other women, which has been such an adventure so far.
Living on your own is a fun challenge to navigate, then adding in six other lives and their cultures, past family practices, and personalities; that is a whole different challenge.
I remember one of my first weekends at college, my dad sent me an article on The Atlantic about how living together isn’t without compromise. The article went into how every person moving from the house they grew up in wants to take a piece of how they live or what makes them happy, but that happiness or way of life can collide with what others idealize.
The article’s thesis has come to me more and more as the other women and I move-in in the physical and emotional sense. There are aspects like, cleaning, that we view differently. Like leaving my keys on the dining table is fine and what I consider a clean space, but to others in my house, that isn’t what they grew up with as clean. It’s simply different for everyone, but somewhere along the spectrum of consideration, we will figure out what works best for everyone. And most importantly, we have been learning how we emotionally function, like how we best communicate as people and friends that live together. Technology has been huge in our house in ways of helping us and hurting us already; we’ve found the best ways to use it among people and the situations it shouldn’t be used to communicate.
One of the most beautiful parts of living together is being challenged with love. In the first few weeks of living with these women, I know that they have my best interest, and I have theirs. I know that if they mention a misstep of mine, they aren’t doing it to ‘get on me,’ they’re doing it because they love me and I love them back for helping me be the best me.
Everyone is at a different pace, a different major, a different taste for life, but this living situation causes us to sit down and look into each other and choose to embrace everything that we are.