As summer comes to an end and senior year quickly makes its arrival, it's hard not to get nostalgic. I wish that I could go back to the first time I laid eyes on this place and fell in love before I even know the possibilities and opportunities it would give me. Don't you remember your first night of college and the new feeling of independence coursing through your body? You were on your own, and for the next four years, you would learn lessons that not even your parents could have prepared you for.
It seems like just yesterday I was walking to my first class of freshman year, excited and eager to sit in a huge auditorium and type notes on my computer with 300 other kids. I hate to admit it, but all those times that someone said that college is the fastest and best four years of your life they weren't lying. Four years used to seem like an eternity, but somehow the past three have gone by in the blink of an eye.
How do you go from having the mindset of "there's always next time" to "okay one last time" just like that? One more fall semester, one more football season, one more year of school. For 16 years I have been wishing that I never had to go to school again, now I'm trying to figure out how to stay an extra semester. As for the real world, it's starting to seem a little less appealing than it was when I was 12 and had no concept of what a bill was.
Each year spent at this university has helped me to understand and grow in new ways. It has pushed me out of my comfort zone, built me up, knocked me down, and ultimately gave me the tools to become a strong and independent person. Only having one more year of "training wheels" seems terrifying to think about.
When I think about the limited number of days I have left at this place, the anxious and lonely feelings creep in. How do you fit everything you want to do and a lifetime worth of plans and ideas into one year? We've spent the past three years making friendships and turning the place we spend 8 months of the year in, home. The trips, memories, and promises you make at 2 a.m. with your best friends start to lead to thoughts of wondering how you're going to go your separate ways in just a few months.
Before we know it, everything is going to change and that in itself is unsettling. Having the ticking clock of graduation looming over my head may be intimidating, but in some ways, I'm grateful for it. There is always a constant reminder to never take the time we have left for granted. Always something in the back of your mind that makes you think twice about saying 'no' to that spontaneous trip with the people you love the most.