There is something so deeply important in gathering as a household and maintaining healthy bonds between roommates.

I say this acknowledging the blessing that it is to live with the roommates I have this year in the gorgeous University Place housing area. Not only am I close to Brisco’s and the events on the front lawn – which have been increasing in excitement with the coming of Fortuna Bowl – I also have the advantage of rolling out of bed later (a massive luxury) as I am right next to the building where the majority of my classes are held. Beyond my extremely convenient location on campus, I am graced with the company of three women who have proven to be a source of consistent blessing for me this semester.

The four different lives that intersect at the meeting point of our apartment have experienced much over the past few weeks. I have seen one roommate barge in announcing victory at an easy exam, another relate an epiphany and breakthrough volunteer opportunity, and another burst through the front door utterly spent, but elated after a long rehearsal for the upcoming theatre production. (Shameless plug aimed at all CBU students and local residents: go see Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, opening November 15. My roommate is a lead in the show, and from what I have been hearing from behind the curtain, it is going to be astoundingly brilliant. It’s also my personal favorite Shakespearean comedy. The Bard knows his way to the audiences’ funny bone; you’re guaranteed to laugh uncontrollably.) While each of us have these insanely busy schedules and rarely find a moment where we are all together and not swamped with homework, we all have managed to find time to keep up with every other housemate and exhort one another in kind.

I realize this post will easily turn into a love letter to my roommates – because seriously, they’re wonderful – but I also want to spend my time musing about the beauty found in the opportunity to live with other students at this time of life. We do school together, learn about ourselves in a group, and achieve a level of community that is completely unique to the college experience. We go through life on campus, experience highs and lows, and life becomes a never-ending party where friends are constantly present.

I have had several moments over the past month where I realize that not only am I now a junior, but I am quickly approaching the halfway mark of the year. The time has flown by at an alarming rate, and only makes me more aware of all that I have enjoyed and will continue to enjoy over the course of my undergrad experience. While I could easily spend dozens of pages pouring out my thoughts on everything I love about my life here (don’t worry – I won’t!) I realize that the biggest blessing has been the community I have found. CBU has become my home away from home, and the people I have shared life with have become additions to my family. I know for certain that a large part of who I am has been shaped by the people God has put in my life, and I see His love given abundantly through them. It really is amazing how much this community does for us, and these are years I will not easily forget.

Forgive me for my abundant sentimentality, but I have to spend a moment giving thanks to the people who share life with me. Thanks for the coffee dates, the overcooked macaroni and cheese (and messy kitchens), the BBC movie nights, the hilarious phrases to add to the “quote book,” and the companionship I have found to be priceless. Life is truly fuller when shared with fellow humans. Friends, you are valued. Carry on, and I will see you next week.