College. What a daunting word. As a freshman in high school I saw it as the end goal of my high school education. I knew that if I did well and made A’s, I would be guaranteed a spot in “college”. As a sophomore, teachers and administrators began stressing diversity, volunteering and finding what we were passionate about so that when college rolled around, we would be ready, know our major (and how the next 20 years of life would go down), and begin growing into mature adults. My junior year was by far the best. I had a tight-knit group of friends that supported me, met me at church every Wednesday night, loved me, encouraged me, and grew alongside me. My classes were hard but memorable. Between longing for AP Lang after Physics in the morning and dreading pop quizzes in AP World History in the afternoons, I found who I really was. I journaled on a weekly basis and was comfortable.
Senior year hit me like a lightning bolt. Touring schools in the summer was the calm before the storm. Decisions were forced on us everywhere. What college. What dorm. Who our roommate would be. What financial aid package would suit me the best. Did I want to be a commuter or an on-campus resident? What would my major be?
In addition, I knew that senior year was valuable and needed to be cherished. My best friends and I planned a senior trip to New York City and pushed thoughts of college aside. For us, college became merely the next step. Another four years in addition to the ones we had just absolved. More new friends, different classes, and late nights. Simply just the obvious choice in preparing for our future.
We never really knew when the future would come. Future is a word that sounds far away, yet wise poets tell us that every next second is the future, and that we should make the most of it.
Graduation came, and we were excited, because we had finally come to terms with our teachers and grades, had forged friendships with our principal and our administrators, and especially our wonderful media specialist, and we thought that summer would bring more time with those we loved.
It was not to be. My family moved to Greenville, South Carolina, from our little sleepy town in Georgia, and I didn’t see my friends until 10 weeks later after a lung infection, painting walls and moving in, and traveling to Europe on my dream trip. I’ll affectionately dub it “Beccy’s Amazing Race”. I missed my friends but I was visiting family, and so I didn’t feel far away from the action at all. When I returned, I realized that college was ACTUALLY a thing, and that I was behind on packing. Extremely behind. Like, no packing lists. And I ALWAYS make a packing list. Even for overnighters. Always.
Now, I’m sitting at my new desk for the next 17 weeks, with my globe to the left and my magnets on the cooling system. My bed is made and so far it seems that I haven’t forgotten anything. Which is also a first. Yes, I know, even with packing lists I always forget something. But what I’m trying to say is, it comes so much faster than you could ever imagine, and yet, I feel like it will never go by. High school was a whirlwind of happiness and friendships. I had the best time ever, and I guess I’ve put college up to the same standard. Can my unlimited meal plan measure up to the salad I always ate at our table with a view in that school cafeteria? Is it really the same, writing in my new Target planner versus the school-issued one that had a dress code section?
College teaches you to be an adult, and yet I still feel like a kid. Getting new stuff, decorating my room, introducing myself all over again. Honestly, I often feel like age is the only thing separating children from teenagers and young adults from (older, not old) adults.
Maturing is a slow process, and it somehow happens while we’re all too busy to notice it.
Adulting is hard. So here’s to living like children: carefree and joyful. Ben Rector says in his new single, “Like when I close my eyes and don’t even care if anyone sees me dancing” (Brand New). Whether life gives you good lyrics or questionable titles, grab life with both hands. But leave some room under your arm for your Bible. I promise you it’ll get you through every season.
Till next time, ciao ♥