When I first stepped foot on campus this year, I never imagined having to visit the hospital within my first week of classes. After enjoying my tofu scramble at brunch that Saturday, I was suddenly overwhelmed with excruciating abdominal pain that was later medically diagnosed as appendicitis. Being from California, having no family to aid me through the emotional aspect of this process was pretty difficult. However, my dad was thankfully able to fly up moments before my surgery the next morning and take care of me during the following days.
I have been able to reflect on the comfort of all these new experiences, both good and bad. Despite numerous challenges, Lewis & Clark has provided me with community and support during my first month of college.
Coming to LC, I was assigned to a quad after signing up for a double, which was an interesting adaptation to make. They let me know just weeks before school started. Living with three other girls versus one is definitely a culture shock. That being said, one of my roommates, who I had met just a week and a half prior, drove me to the hospital without hesitation.
While I was at the hospital, my roommates were still there for me remotely by sending me reassuring messages and making sure I knew their support was waiting for me when I returned. They also had to deal with my loud alarms going off at 2 a.m. to take my fifth dose of Tylenol of the day. I have already seen how strong of a community there is here and really benefited from having some surprise built-in supporters and friends.
I was concerned about the classes I was missing and how my lack of participation would affect my grades. After emails and check-ins during office hours, I was told how to catch up and to take my time recovering. I would have never thought an administration team would be this helpful and kind. All of my professors went out of their way to keep me up to speed with the rest of the class, and when I returned the transition back was seamless. The academic department at this school showed their bright, true colors right away.
Additionally, I was worried about walking to get meals that week since walking was such a hassle. Fields Dining Hall allowed my roommates to collect my meals for me, so I did not have to venture across campus and risk popping a stitch. I deal with certain food allergies such as eggs and nuts and was worried that the meals I would receive would be something I could not have. However, both my roommates and the Bon staff made sure that my to-go boxes were packed with food that I could eat, even with my allergies.
Although unconventional, I feel as if my first couple of weeks at LC have been a very accurate representation of the friendly community built here. I may never have the tofu scramble again because of the experience of surviving that day, but I will always remember how much help I was given in the following days.
Illustration by Maya Williamson