Summer has always been filled with sunshine, lemonade, green grass, and laughter. It always meant a break from normal life and the ability to relax, sleep in, and just have fun for the ten weeks we got.
Summer meant sleepovers every night with your best friend and barbecues in your backyard with your dog running around wild. It meant football and sprinklers and nights spent on the trampoline. The ice-cream truck would echo through the neighborhood and you and the rest of the children would run towards it with wild energy.
Our parents would go crazy with all the extra energy in the home and would try their best to tame us. However, their efforts would be fruitless because we would manage to find some way to get ourselves into trouble.
As we got older, the summer turned into a way for us to work and make our own money. Jobs such as ice-cream scooping, lifeguarding, and babysitting would be given out like candy. Cars were bought, adventures were made, and new swimsuits were adorned. The beaches and lakes were filled with rowdy teens and campfires flickered up to the sky filled with infinite stars.
Many firsts were made those summers: kisses, friends, boyfriends, girlfriends, and more.
Many lasts were made those summers: kisses, friends, boyfriends, girlfriends, and more.
Each memory is permanently ingrained in your mind, ready to be plucked out whenever needed. Your journals are filled with events, quotes, and moments from each summer. Something you know you will never let your future children read if they can help it.
This summer is a little different though. It's the last summer before our senior year of college. Our last summer to freely go about life with an unrestricted view through rose-tinted glasses.
We've never experienced a summer where we weren't restrained by the fact that we will be on our own and need a form of income to survive. It will be the first time we actually begin to start the rest of our lives. The first time we do not just jump onto the next ledge of life, but full-on jump off the cliff into a sea of uncertainty and adventure.
This summer needs to be cared and counted for. Keep the mundane things in your schedule, but also fit in new adventures. Go to the places you've always wanted to go to. Do what you've always wanted to do. Bake that three-layer cake you saw once on Pinterest. Visit your friend in another state. Go to that national park that is basically in your backyard.
Do everything that you won't be able to do once you move out and get a job and more responsibility. Hang out with your family and take your siblings out for ice-cream and coffee. Use these last ten weeks to relax and enjoy your free time.
This summer, don't worry about where the current will take me or how rough the waters will be. We have our whole lives to do that. Forget the bills, grades, future careers, and relationships. For now, let's just focus on enjoying the end of an era of worry-free summers and make it count.