Oakland, CA — When my stepdad moved across the country, I was worried it would strain our family. Instead, it’s prepared me to move to college next year.
Last fall, my stepdad got a job in Richmond, Virginia. I was afraid our lives would change drastically. He'd no longer be here during dinner, we wouldn't hear him leaving the house for his weekend bike rides. And when would we make fun of his British accent?
When I expressed these anxieties, my parents said, “It’s like he’s going to college. We’re sort of prepping for you leaving next year.”
Since he left, we’ve seen him often. We spent two weeks on the East Coast over Christmas, and he's come back for long weekends. He’s super present in our lives, and the time we spend together makes up for the distance.
This experience has lifted some of my anxieties for college. The idea of being apart from my family creates this heavy feeling in my stomach. But I look at how my family has thrived, despite the distance, and I’m not so scared anymore. Just because I’ll be living away, doesn’t mean I’ll be alone.