I have a love thing and a hate thing with the 16 week schedule, this academic undercurrent that pulls me from month to month.
I’ve definitely had worse semesters, but their endings never felt this triumphant. I worked on my last paper until shortly after 3:30 on Monday, walked with my roommate to Starbucks for Frappuccino Happy Hour. From there, a small celebration for our comrades graduating with MAss and MFAs. Three glasses of champagne, then straight to the bar, a mess of us, delirious and drunk, squeezed into a hallway together and happy happy happy on a Monday night.
I had to work in the morning, but you’re only young and finishing a semester of school once, right?
Surely I felt this relaxed last December, last August, last May, but this feeling – relief, contentedness, respite – feels foreign. I probably use this particular metaphor too much but it feels like I’ve just crawled out of a cave. The sun is too bright, my bones a little achy, everything looks weird and I don’t know where to go next, what to do.
What DO I do when there is no school to do?
It’s been more than two years since I was 100% sure of myself,
since I started to leave one life and enter another.
This is only a temporary respite – a few weeks of work, then a trip home. A few weeks back to work some more, then add classes to the mix. Then it’s August, then it’s the fall.
I’m just now starting to feel like things will be okay. That my life will still be there, even when things get crazy, that I will still be there. That I can find a meaningful, enjoyable existence no matter what life throws at me.
Is there a stable me left behind this graduate student to fall back on?
I feel like there is, but I don’t know who she is yet, what she looks like.
And since the anxiety of moving/adjusting/constantly-going-going-going is starting to pass,
for the first time in over two years,
I am kind of excited to meet her.
August 2009 – April 2011