A question I'm frequently asked when someone visits our home, sees our sons wardrobe or hears my husband speak. To some, it might sound silly that our family has a lot of Dartmouth memorabilia and our toddler's room also incorporates Dartmouth. Well here's why...
No, I personally didn't graduate from Dartmouth. I actually went to The Ohio State University which is completely different than Dartmouth. So where does the love come from? My lovely husband who did graduate from Dartmouth. That is where the story begins.
When we first met, the way he spoke of Dartmouth was crazy. I honestly couldn't understand it. In my mind, I thought there was no way a place could be like this. I figured it was just a passion from spending 4 years of your life there. That was until I actually visited Dartmouth for the first time. It was like Narnia. A cute little campus hidden in New England. If you've visited then you know what I mean. Picturesque scene. Friendly people and a wonderful atmosphere.
Up until we had our son I continued to contribute to my husband's obsession of Dartmouth but I myself wasn't quite sold. I loved Dartmouth because my husband loved Dartmouth. We, of course, bought our son all of the cutest Dartmouth gear to support Daddy's school. It was more like a fan of a sports team. I still had no attachment quite yet.
That is until the moment we decided to move to Dartmouth for two years for my husband to complete Tuck Business School. This is specifically where that love for Dartmouth changed from just my husband to actually our whole family. A move is stressful, business school is stressful, making friends is stressful. I can honestly say I think if we would have moved somewhere else for Sebastian to attend business school I'm not sure if we could have made it. Sounds crazy but honestly, it's a life changer and there's no way to prepare you for all of the changes.
Dartmouth to me is not just the place that I lived for two years while my husband finished school. Dartmouth is the place I grew into motherhood, found my own career passion, battled through my anxiety, went through relationship struggles, and where my family became a family. In all honesty, Dartmouth changed our family. We made friends, lost friends, found out true friends, and grew as parents. In one little town, we managed to be surrounded by wonderful friends and role models that shaped us into who we are as a family today. It is the place that we actually had a wedding and will always cherish our anniversary. It's where our son had his very first birthday and second. It's the place where my husband ran let our son become part of a homecoming tradition. Where he frequently took him to his favorite spots as an undergrad, including his fraternity.
No, I didn't attend the classes in Tuck but I was welcomed with open arms by the Dartmouth staff and community to contribute as much as I wanted. To being involved with Tiny Tuckies to taking a Letterpress class at the library, I was invited. I had the chance to help plan a mock class where I met a best friend for life to create my own friendship stories from Dartmouth (like my husband).
I not only chose to take advantage of this support but to learn more about the school itself. My husband was a history major so I was constantly being told stories about the college. However, I decided to learn more on my own. Yes, I turned into the person in our house reading a book about the history of the college. There's something feeling like you're in the place of where so much history has taken place.
When we left Dartmouth to move to New York City, I wasn't sure that my love for Dartmouth would be as powerful. What I learned is that Dartmouth is actually everywhere. Yes, our apartment as Dartmouth all over it but it's more than that. It's the ability to be anywhere and know that you can meet up with other Dartmouth Alumni or friends. We sadly didn't make it to the bonfire this year. However, we still celebrated homecoming with Dartmouth clothes and thoughts.
I will always love my college but to our family, Dartmouth is a very special place and it is never too much to show our families love to the college that shaped my husband and then our family.
Cheers to our first homecoming in the city!