Sunday, October 19, 2008

On College

People are always saying that these are the best years of my life, but as far as I can tell college is just waiting for adult life to start. I can't think of a single college student that I know that is living in the present, everyone spends all of their time thinking about the future. We're only here in the first place because it will probably give us a better future than not going to college, but it isn't hard to see why people that opt to not go to college after high school develop a greater sense of identity at a younger age. I'm three months into my second year, and I feel like college is already over. Not in the good, getting-on-with-my-life way, but in a stuck way. It seems pointless to transfer at this point. I'm still applying, but I just want college to be over. A lot of my friends are planning on graduating early. I don't know if I'd like to do that, but it's a symptom of this problem where no one lives in the now. Everyone is so focused on where they're going to study abroad next spring, and their apartment next fall. It's already too late to get an apartment for next year, and it isn't even November. I don't want to make my schedule for next semester yet, I don't want to think about housing, I'm trying to get through my current classes and cohabit with my current roommate. I don't want to think about the future.
I had a very pleasant visit with Riva this weekend. People have a way of looking at their friends sometimes, where you can see them marveling at how much they love them, that is like sunshine to a plant. Most of our mutual friends were busy, so I had Riva to myself a lot of the time. It was like going tanning, I hope that it lasts, so even when I go through weeks where I don't have very many positive interactions with people I won't get all Seasonal Affective Disorder-y. I was talking to Brittney about my friends on Friday, and she sympathized with how hard it is to make new good friends, and how it's easy to stick with less-good friends than go it alone. It's a sort of tease, hanging out with Clarence and Chelsea, however briefly, while Riva was here. It reminded me how nice things were last year, when I had best friends, but also what I lost when they got tired of me, or developed other priorities, or whatever it was that came between us and left me alone. But that's beside the point. I feel like Riva had a fun visit, we watched "Firefly", went for walks, and even went to the IB. It turns out that drinking with Riva is fun, if not as fun as not-drinking with her. I'm glad we tried it, but I don't think it's going to enter into the rotation of stuff we do together.
I feel ready for this week. Things are sort of looking up, even if the only difference is that now I'm determined to be happier. I'm actually making an effort to make good decisions and be positive. I'm not mad at people anymore, I'm actually committed to giving up hook-ups for a relationship, even if that means I'll be on my own for a long time. I'm keeping small, realistic goals that are things in my control. I can't help but feel like I'm treading water, and these are short-term solutions, but maybe it's just the optimist in me, believing that something good will come along, and things will get better.


Greg said...

It's common here to take a "gap year", a break between high school and college, usually including a period of backpacking around Asia or Europe or the world, taking a job, and so forth. I suppose there are other options, at this stage, for you. I did a semester abroad, for example, and even if it was "just" England, it did broaden my perspective a bit, and I made a life-long friend.

Emily said...

I know what you mean. One thing that's sometimes helped me is keeping a journal and making sure to write down all the pleasant day-to-day things that happen to me (instead of just stressful stuff and thoughts on the non-actual, like crushes or future plans). It's nice to have something more tangible than memory to remind you that things are actually pretty okay.

Dana said...

Hey Beautiful,

You are always loved.

Please don't be sad.

And I don't know what I will do without you if you decide to... well...

-Crazy Redhead

Dana said...

That comment was sort of ambiguous. It sort of sounded like I was implying that you were about to kill yourself. That wasn't what I meant. I know you are not suicidal.

-Crazy Redhead

TCA said...

Here's the thing of it, Miss Happy Jack Squirrel...Psychology is way too much about navel gazing. Get back to the hard stuff like learning to do things you may turn out to be good at. Especially try to find things that help other people besides yourself. I know this is who you really are,: a generous, kind, loving human who also happens to be very pretty. You can li9ve with that!