Freshers, metamorphosis, and goo…

Whilst on my daily (who am I kidding, hourly) scroll through Instagram, I came across a post about caterpillars. The enlightening picture informed me that these little beasts turn into goo whilst in the cocoon. A caterpillar soup if you like. However, what was particularly interesting was studies have shown that the butterfly post-cocooning has the same brain as the caterpillar it once was – this means the goo has a brain. Suddenly I realised, I am the goo.

Allow me to explain: I am a fresher and completely new to the city. Throughout the past few months, I’ve often found myself wondering how this year could be turning out so differently to what I had thought when I dreamed about it last year, sitting in my school uniform. I kept asking myself why I wasn’t settled in Leeds; why I wasn’t taking to independent learning life like a duck to water. But this is where our caterpillar comes in. I realise that, for me, university so far has been one big transitioning phase. I have learnt more about myself in these past few months than ever before and, although sometimes it has been tough, I know that this period of time is fundamental. I went to university expecting to go from a caterpillar to a butterfly (cliché, I know) and totally forgot the goo stage – the most important stage.

As first years, we have an expectation that the move to university will be easy and go without a hitch. But that just isn’t reality and it would be wrong if it was. It’s important we know that it’s okay to struggle and feel like your life isn’t going how you planned, or to feel unsettled, or sometimes to simply feel unhappy. This is normal: this is your goo stage.

I know that even when I get through this transitional phase I will still be the same person – much like the butterfly still has the same brain as the caterpillar – I will just have evolved. Additionally, I don’t expect this to be the only time I turn to goo. I think it’ll come with every big new step in life – it’s a cycle.

And hey, if you think your life is going badly, at least you’re not the girl who compared herself to caterpillar goo in her first article.

Eve Jackson

(Image courtesy of

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