I moved to Denton, Texas to go back to school at the University of North Texas (UNT) on January 9th, 2019. I’m here pursuing a degree in social work. I went to UNT for 3 semesters previously from Fall 2015-Fall 2016 and I’m super excited to be back! Read on to learn about my first 2 weeks in Denton from move-in through my first week of classes.
I live in a 4 bedroom, 4 bathroom apartment not far from campus and I love it. The location is perfect and my roommates and I are getting along well so far. We each have our own room and bathroom and share a kitchen and living room. I am the oldest of the 4 of us by a few years. My roommates are all around 20-21 years old. It hasn’t proved to be an issue so far but there have definitely been a few times during conversations when I’ve thought to myself “gosh I feel old!”. Haha!
This semester I’m taking 9 hours of lecture plus a math lab, so technically 10 hours. I’m taking:
- Elementary Problems and Statistics + Lab
- Policies, Issues, and Problems in Social Welfare, (a social work pre-req)
- Foundations of Interviewing (another social work pre-req)
So far I’m really liking everything. My professors seem nice and the course content appears pretty manageable. There’s even a couple specific assignments in my social work classes that I’m particularly excited about, such as the policy brief I get to write for my Policy, Issues, and Problems in Social Welfare class. I’ve chosen to write mine over the accessibility (or lack thereof) to insurance-covered treatment for eating disorders in the USA. It’s one of our final assignments we’ll turn in for the semester but I’ll definitely let y’all know how it’s going as I progress though working on it!
Mental Health Since Moving: It Started Out Dark
As some of you may or may not know, this move has been very difficult on my mental health. I’ve been struggling with depression since early this past fall, but this move to Denton took that depression to a different level for a good week or so. Denton didn’t see a drop of sunlight for a solid 5 days after I moved…which didn’t help the seasonal affective part of my depression at all. It was cold and cloudy and there was nothing to do and no one for me to do anything with. My roommates we all working and finishing up wintermester classes so they weren’t around either. None of my course content had been posted on UNT’s online platform yet, so I couldn’t work ahead for school.
I made a couple runs to Walgreens and Walmart but other than that I more-or-less barricaded myself in my room for a week. I spent all day listening to music, aimlessly scrolling through Facebook and Instagram, thinking about everything I could be doing…but knowing that I had no interest in actually doing any of it. At that point, my sleep schedule was still very messed up because I wasn’t used to the apartment yet. I wallowed all day and cried for an hour or so every night. I kept saying “I don’t regret moving, but this isn’t fun yet”. I just wanted school to start so badly so that I had things that I had to do and places that I had to be.
It’s Gotten Better Though!
Sure enough, once school started and the sun started to come out again on a regular basis (in a very literal way) I began to feel better. I’ve been hanging out with friends I already had from in Denton. I’ve even made a couple friends in my new classes! It’s been great being able to get out and walk around campus and be outdoors since the weather has been nice this last week.
Is the depression all gone? No. You’ll notice I’m still not posting much on any of my social media platforms. I am trying to get back into the swing of things slowly as I feel up to it and as I feel I have good content to put up. That being said, being back in a “big college” or University setting and living away from my parents is still a huge change for me. It’s still a learning curve and an adjustment. Over time I’ll get into a new groove and things will return to a new normal. I’m giving myself some grace right now though. My mental and physical health and my academics are my top priorities. I’m not going anywhere! I’m just slowing down for a bit.
I love Denton and I love UNT. I’m happy here. I’m thankful that I moved and that I took this chance. It was a huge leap of faith but I don’t regret it in the slightest. Has it been a challenge? Absolutely! It’s been harder than I ever imagined in a lot of ways. But I wouldn’t change my current situation for anything.