Still Afraid

Wow, I have come to the realization that I have been writing a lot lately, and with that, I have therefore additionally come to the realization that I have been seemingly complaining a lot as well, and to this, I have to laugh, because I promise you, even though that is what the majority of my blogs as of late have been centered on, my life is not a terrible mess at the moment. For the most part, my stress level has been very low lately, because I know what I have to do between now and the end of the semester, and I have a plan as to when I am going to complete each assignment and about how long each assignment is going to take me. Stress has therefore not really been much of a plague lately, but as I have been saying a lot lately, fear of the future has been a plague.

Of course, I suppose that fearing the future is in itself some form of stress, but when I feel something powerful, such as fear or anger or even extreme happiness (even though I have come to find that, oddly enough, happiness is the most difficult emotion to express), I feel the need to write about it, and that is why I have been writing so much lately. In this particular case, as I have been saying, the future is bothering me to a great extent, and because of that, because that is really all that is bothering me right now, some of this may be a bit repetitive to those who have been following my blog entries, but even if that is the case, there have also been some new developments, ones that really aren’t either good or bad at this point, because since they don’t really clear anything up for me, they don’t help me.

As I said very recently, I emailed financial aid about my issue regarding the townhouses. For those of you who have not been following my blogs and thus don’t know what I’m talking about, a group of friends, basically my best friends here, want to live in the townhouses next year. This was not on my agenda at all. It didn’t become part of my agenda, in fact, until one of these friends told me one day that she was considering the townhouses next year, but at the time, I didn’t take her as seriously, because she didn’t seem insistent on it or determined, for that matter; it more seemed as if it was merely something that seemed like a good idea to her. Now, however, everyone is determined to make it happen, and I seem to be the only one who finds fault with it.

I understand that I am very seriously jumping around here, and I apologize for that, but by the end of the blog, I will try my hardest to tie everything up. Anyway, I seriously doubt that there are, but if there are any of you who are reading this and don’t know what I’m talking about when I refer to the “townhouses,” then when you get the chance, take a look at west campus, and you’ll see a good amount of new buildings being built by the lagoon behind Oneida Hall, and these are the townhouses. The benefit is that they’re sort of like apartments; you get your own bathroom, each one of you (six per apartment) get your own bedroom, etc., so needless to say, it’s an appealing idea, because it’s kind of like living in a house. However, in my personal opinion, the cons outweigh the pros, which is why up until this was mentioned, I wasn’t considering this even in the slightest.

My plan was always to live in Riggs and to hopefully do so with a roommate that I can pretty much count on getting along with (I didn’t have the greatest experiences last year as a freshman, and I was miserable). This year, the Riggs part didn’t happen, because it was full, and so I had to live in Waterbury, but first of all, I love Waterbury, and second of all, the latter did happen. A good friend of mine agreed to room with me, and so far, it couldn’t be any better. We get along great, and there’s a very hefty amount of respect between the two of us, not to mention the fact that, as I said before, he is part of this group that I keep mentioning, and the problem with that is that if he goes and I don’t, then I’m back to square one.

Anyway, allow me to list off what I see as the cons of living in the townhouses. For starters, I don’t see them as being very convenient for students who don’t have cars, which I don’t. It’s so far away from everything. I’d have to leave the house a good half-hour or so before each class begins to ensure that I get there on time, and of course, the simple solution to that is to take a bus, and in the winter time, that is most definitely what will be happening, but when the weather is nice, I don’t want to be taking a bus everywhere I go. I like walking when the weather is nice, not only because it gives me alone time to reflect and to enjoy the world around me but also because it’s a little bit of additional exercise. Secondly, back to the winter issue, buses run, so getting to class would not be an issue; however, on weekends when the weather is terrible (which describe weekends of which there will be plenty, something you have to count on when you live in Oswego), I see myself cooped up in the house all weekend long, not even leaving to eat since their plan is also just to cook at home.

Additionally, and this is the most pressing con, it is more expensive. I have been told that it costs a lot more, since you’re paying to live in a single, whereas now, I’m living in a double, and that would drastically affect my bill, since I highly doubt that financial aid would cover the difference. Returning to what I said earlier about financial aid returning my email, they said that they are unsure of whether or not they would cover it or not but that I should keep in mind that they might not, which sort of annoyed me, because I am keeping that in mind; that’s why I emailed them. Anyway, I’m not sure what to do, because one idea that they (my friends) are considering is reducing or potentially even canceling their meal plans just to cook at home, and if I did that, then maybe I’d be okay, since the price of living in the townhouses would replace the price of having a full meal plan; however, then, I’d have to drop money (which I only get $1,600 a year of, mind you) each week for groceries, so either way, I lose.

There is no way for me to win. As I said the other night, my friend David is considering coming to Oswego for his BA, but the problem with that is that, first of all, he’s not coming until fall 2010, and I need to either make a decision regarding the townhouses or select a roommate much earlier than that, and I can’t select him as a roommate if he doesn’t get here until fall, because he won’t be a student here yet. I would say that I need advice, but I don’t really need anything except to make a decision, and I can’t do that when I don’t know how much financial aid is going to help me as far as money is concerned, and although I hate the idea of being so disconnected from the campus and being in an area where there is nothing but residence halls and therefore being so far away from classes, the finances are what trouble me the most, so I can’t even begin to think until I get some closure as to whether or not that is going to be a problem, which I think it will be.

If I can’t live in the townhouses, the plus side is that I won’t have to deal with all of those cons that I previously listed, but what it also means, however, is that I risk rooming with a jerk that is going to be incredibly difficult to live with and who I don’t get along with, and it also means that I won’t be with my friends, that they’ll be all the way on the other side of campus having fun without me, and I’ll barely see them, and that’s something that I cannot handle, and I don’t want to ask them to consider forgetting about the townhouses for two reasons. First of all, that’s an awful lot to ask someone; I cannot and do not expect people to live their lives, making decisions, for me. Second of all, I know that they wouldn’t anyway. They’ve made it clear without actually explicitly saying so that they are pursuing this with or without me. I am more or less dispensable. If financial aid drops that bomb on me that says that they’re not going to cover my expenses and I therefore can’t do it, they’ll just find someone else. There is so much to think about, and I really, really hope that this works itself out.

About the Author

Hey, I'm Christopher. I am currently a graduate student in the SUNY Oswego English program, and I am also a Desk Attendant in Sheldon Hall (where I am also living). I graduated with two degrees in May 2012 - English and Adolescence Education with a Concentration in English. I substitute-taught in Rome City School District fall 2012 and then came back to school in January 2013 in order to obtain a masters degree in English, which I plan to obtain in May 2014. I love to read, and I love TV shows, especially science-fiction and fantasy.
Email: ccook@oswego.edu
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