When I graduated from college this weekend, I didn't even own a wallet. After having mine stolen many weeks ago some combination of busyness, apathy and a fear of permanence kept me from getting a new one. Dollar bills, credit cards and IDs swam loosely in my pants' pockets all weekend, and when I walked in the door of my apartment after dropping my sister off at the airport I took them out and laughed.
Now that the ceremonies and congratulations are done, I will try to unite the pieces of myself that have grown separately over the past four years.
I spent the weekend among friends and family, constantly introducing then meeting, sitting then standing, laughing then being deeply moved. The whole opus was a whirlwind and I am thankful that my camera made it to a few events, but will rely on the photo albums of others to relive the majority of the experience.
The strongest urge that I had was to repress to feel strange, and uncomfortable. As we walked across campus I struggled to ignore the feeling that this walk across campus was different from all others. As I hugged and congratulated people I swallowed the lump in my throat that was a drawn out goodbye. Looking at the faces and places that have made up my home for the past 4 years was enough in itself, so I smiled, and tried not to think. Emotions were strong enough already in the crowds that I was engulfed by.
Yet as I sit here in reflection, I will try to embrace the discomfort. I may not move forward with grace, but I am sure that I will move forward nonetheless. I believe that we learn in motion, rather than stasis so I will dive headfirst into the unknown. The fear that I feel is derived from a sense of impending adulthood and a waning grip on the excitement of youth. The realistic outcome is probably somewhere in between. The past 72 hours have left me excited to bring my energy onto new avenues and into bigger situations. In the name of the university that I call home and the friends who walked each step with me I will let the inspiration of the past 4 years drive me towards a meaningful tomorrow.