Saturday, August 10, 2013

Two precious years …


A blogger friend recently wrote these words: “I lived at home during college …which, in retrospect, was a poor decision” and it immediately sparked this memory of the two precious years when I lived at home during college … which, in retrospect, was one of the best decisions of my life !

I am the youngest of 5 girls, all born within 8 years. It made for a very full household. In the 50’s we were living in Wellesley Hills, Massachusetts and the pictures you see are my parents as they looked then. It was a loving family and my only real complaint during that time was that I seldom had the complete attention of my parents. This was not their fault … there were only so many hours in a day and it was always divided by 5 (or 4, or 3, etc. as the girls started to leave home.)

In 1950 it was my turn to leave home and I moved to New Jersey where I attended Upsala College for two years, living on campus. When I decided to transfer to Boston University for my final two years I found that campus living there was very expensive. My parents, however, came up with a solution. They would give me the top floor of our old Victorian house to live in and set up exactly as I wanted. I could then commute to BU which was just an hour away by train.

Wow. I was thrilled. I got to work and actually cut through one of the walls, converting the attic area into an L shaped studio apartment. I had all the privacy that I wanted but, most important, since the other 4 sisters had moved on, I also had the undivided attention of my parents for once in my life !

My mother and dad never invaded my private space unless invited ... which was often.   Then they’d arrive at my apartment just as they would have if I were living someplace other than in our own home. For the two years that I attended BU we spent many evenings together and forged a friendship that few children ever have with their parents. They knew that I craved to be on my own but they also knew that a firm foundation came first and those years gave it to me.

It was one of the happiest times in my life and I am grateful to Judy (my blogger friend) for reminding me of it !



Blogger troutbirder said...

I lived at home with my parents the four years I attended the Univ. of Minnesota. It was mostly a "commuter" college in the Twin Cities. The arrangement served me well....

5:52 PM  
Blogger Anvilcloud said...

That was an excellent solution. Goon on your parents for doing that for you. Good for you too.

5:56 PM  
Blogger NCmountainwoman said...

What a great time for you and for your parents. Wise decision that created so many happy memories of your days as an only child.

9:48 AM  
Blogger possum said...

My family was in Turkey the first 2 years then dad got sent to 'Nam where he stayed until the evacuation. The rest of the kids got to go home on week-ends - I got to have the dorm room to myself and hang out with the other kids whose parents were too far away for them to go home. I envied the kids who got to live at home or at least go home for the week-end. They envied me my freedom! Funny how that works.
But it sounds like you had the best of all possible worlds!

10:19 AM  
Blogger Arkansas Patti said...

You really had some outstanding parents that allowed you a degree of privacy and freedom in their home that a young college woman would need. I fear mine would have stuck by the "my roof, my rules" edict.

2:07 PM  
Blogger Beatrice P. Boyd said...

You were so very fortunate, Ginnie, to have shared these years with your parents. I lived at home during my first 2 years of college when I commuted to a junior college, then transferred to Temple University in Philadelphia and lived on campus.

6:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wonderful cherished memory. I envy your past. My father was not very understanding and treated me like a child even after I was married.

My granddaughters have been coming and going as needs dictate. Currently two of them (H finished college and now an artist, R attending a local college and working) are living with their parents.

Of the four girls, the youngest (J) is attending VA Tech and home for the summer while my daughter's second oldest (A) is living with another woman in Charlottesville VA. A has finished undergrad college and going to grad school in the fall. Meanwhile she has a fulltime job with the university. A recently told her Mom she planned to move back home after she finished school to look for work (she plans to teach high school science) which means she will move home after she finishes grad school.

Both of my daughter's daughters living at home (A and R) work outside the home, and one of them has an employed boyfriend living with the family. The older girl (A) has set up a space downstairs where she has an art studio next to her bedroom.

These days, many kids are living with parents for one reason or another. Sometimes, the parents even take in kids who don't want to live at home.

How wonderful that you had such kind and understanding parents. Not everyone is so fortunate. Dianne

8:02 AM  
Blogger Syd said...

I'm glad that you had those good memories. I was glad to leave home and go to college. It finally gave me the freedom that I craved.

12:21 PM  
Blogger Tossing Pebbles in the Stream said...

I wonder if you can still take a train into Boston from Wellesley? I spent a year at Boston University. I regret never going to Fenway Park. I was hoping to visit Boston with my friend Lynne and take in a ball game, until she decided I was not worth the trouble of a friendship and she moved on.

11:40 AM  

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