I have been dreading this year since 2002.
That was the year I was in kindergarten, and I looked up on the board with all of our pictures (taken on my playground; mine was taken on my favorite place, the swings) headed in bold, multi-colored neon letters: CLASS OF 2015.
2015 means growing up, it means moving on, it means change. Unfortunately, that has never been something I’ve been good at. I have been at my school for fifteen years–I have never know anything else. I have lived in a total of two houses, lived in the same state, done the same thing for Christmas Eve for all eighteen years of my life. Change is not something I greet with enthusiasm or open arms.
2015 is the year I graduate from the only school I’ve ever attended, the year I move out of the only state I’ve ever lived in, and the year I leave behind everything I’ve ever known.
For someone who travels as much as I do and who craves the adventure of the unknown, I have always gone out into the world knowing exactly where, and when, I was coming back–to the green house on the road that no one can pronounce, not even my GPS. I now embark on a different kind of adventure, and one with an ending that is constantly up to interpretation. This is my story, and I get to choose how it ends.
But what if I don’t know?
How am I, at merely 18 years old, expected to decide how I want my life to play out? I have known the same people since I was two years old, I have walked the same halls, I have seen the same teachers; I have not drastically changed my academic life–until now. And that’s only because there’s this little thing called graduation that I sort of have to do.
Even at the beginning of this school year, I understood that I was graduating this academic school year. But it wasn’t until 2015, and it was still 2014, so I was fine. Except now it is 2015. And I graduate this year. Not so fine anymore.
But I don’t really have a choice; in June, I will be donning my cap and gown and becoming an alum. And I have to be okay with that. Endings have to come for new beginnings to take their place.
Although 2015 is a year of many endings, it is also a year of many, many new beginnings. And those I couldn’t be more excited about.
Am I ready? Absolutely not. But I don’t really have a choice, now do I?