Perspective is a funny thing. I’ve tried about ten different times to write and update and just post anything relating to something, but every time I started, I would save it to my drafts because it wasn’t ready. It wasn’t right. It wasn’t something.
But today I decided I needed to say something. I needed to update. I needed not to fail this one thing. It’s not so much that I have failed recently, as that I’ve had a lot of time for introspection. I’ve been thinking a lot about how I’ve spent these last four years of undergrad, and I can’t help but feel like I’ve wasted them. I needed to find some perspective for myself.
Lately, I feel like I’ve never had quite enough time, I’ve felt like I’ve had an endless expanse of time, I’ve felt like time has passed both much too slowly and too quickly. Here I am now, with only a few months left in undergrad. September-May. That’s it. I’ve always been looking forward to the end, to graduating, to the next step. Now the next step is almost here and I’m actually really afraid.
But before I get carried away, here’s an update.
In May I got back together with my high school boyfriend, Max. It was the best reconciliation I could have ever hoped for. It all started when I texted him at midnight one night when I was feeling particularly sad and alone. I just wanted a friend that I could lay it all out on the table with and not have to worry about being judged when the sun came up. We had been through a rocky first relationship, a very interesting friendship, and a decent amount of history. Lucky for me, he drove an hour up to where I live to see me that night. We talked until 4 a.m. about everything. It was what I needed–I needed to just be honest with someone and have them listen. I didn’t want advice. I didn’t want a booty call. I just wanted another person to be there.
In the next week we stayed in contact until I moved out of my place of residence for the summer and he helped me move. It was in my small and over-packed car, driving down the highway that I asked if he wanted to be together again. The rest is history. We lived together all summer and it was the best thing I ever could have done. We fell in love all over again–but better this time, as older and more relaxed people. Some of you may laugh at the way I’m calling myself old, but.. hey 21 is older than 16.
Over the summer I worked at the local pool as a life guard, and threw myself into an internship that I loathed. That’s right, loathed. But at the end of every day I got to come home to a man that I love, and forget about all the worrisome problems I faced during the day.
Then in the beginning of August he shipped out for basic training. The day he left was so hard for me (I imagine not as hard as the first few weeks of basic were for him). It’s only for two months, he kept saying. Two months can be a long time. A lot can happen in two months. A lot has happened in two months. But it’s given me time to look at things differently.
For starters, I dyed my hair. I went from natural platinum blond to dark auburn (and fell in love with the change). It’s my first semester taking 18 credits, but 18 credits filled with courses I thoroughly enjoy–namely Human Sexuality and Photo Journalism. I decided to get a tattoo. I said good bye to a friendship that meant a lot to me, but could no longer continue. I got my old job back and started a new one. I’ve begun to get very familiar with the discomfort that sits so closely with the uncertainty of graduation. I’ve missed falling asleep next to Max very, very much. My sister has become my absolute best friend.
We write, Max and I. I’ve gotten two letters and two phone calls. The first letter I made it half way through before crying. The second I drove all the way home to retrieve because I couldn’t wait to get more word from him. The first phone call came as such a shock that I thought it was a prank. The most recent phone call made me so happy and excited that I cried tears of joy. This week on Thursday marks the end of basic training and last night I was so excited heading into this week that I couldn’t get to sleep. I think Max might be the only person more ready than me for basic to be over.
In terms of my two favorite classes–Human sexuality and Photo Journalism–they make the time pure “flow.” Human Sexuality at first was a bit of a shock: we were going to be studying the human genitalia in intricate detail, everything there could possibly be to know about it (positions, socio-cultural aspects of sex, history, everything). I’m not sure what else I was expecting, but it wasn’t that. There is also a new teacher that teaches it–and instead of the usual 30-40 people enrolled, only six people are in the class. It looked like this wouldn’t be the usual senior-blow-off class it had always been. It still isn’t, by the way. I love the class not so much for the content but for the people who are in it with me. Two other girls and three guys–all with a wide range of personality. I love it because we all laugh so hard during discussions. It’s rare for a class period to go buy without my sides aching from laughing. It’s truly wonderful to laugh that hard three times a week.
My other favorite, Photo Journalism is wonderful because I learned that I have a real passion for taking photos. Photos of children playing, couples by Colden Pond, ducks, the register in my bedroom. I can’t get enough of looking at things through the lens of my camera or sifting through my favorite pictures and thinking, “I took that photo. I love this photo. Everyone should see this photo.”
While I feel like I’m on unsteady ground a lot of the time with graduating, there are so many moments throughout my weeks that I just want to live out again. I want to always remember these moments. It doesn’t matter if the people I know today aren’t in my life ten years from now. What matters is how I remember them and that I know I enjoyed the time I had. It’s about perspective–one day I will probably wish I didn’t know what was going to happen next for me. I think it’s time I stop being afraid of the unknown and start embracing it.
….now about Senior year being totally filled with interesting experiences that aren’t necessarily academic… I may or may not have been the cause of someone’s couch needing to be steam cleaned. Jury is out on that one, folks. Will keep those experiences to a minimum.