staring into the vastness
Graduation is just around the corner. I don’t know why, but I’m actually quite scared. I know, I’ve no real reason to be frightened of this. It’s a huge milestone, one I’ve been chasing for a while now, and fighting through a lot of hurdles.
I started my pursuit at Kellogg CC, a community college in my hometown of Coldwater. I did two years there and got my general education credits out of the way. I then transferred to Grand Valley State, a school I hated from the beginning, and ended up falling apart emotionally, falling deep into depression. I went home after that first year, and was all but burned out on the idea of college. ”I’m not going back there”, I told myself. So I went back to KCC for a semester, and after I tried going to Spring Arbor University a small, Christian school in Jackson, about an hour from home. It wasn’t a good fit for me, so I only ever took one class there, and canned the rest. Instead I took time off from school and worked. I learned a lot about myself in that time off from school. That August, I returned to Grand Valley, thinking to myself “maybe it’s not so bad. Maybe it was all in my head”. I wound up homeless, sleeping on a friend’s couch, and in hotels, and once in my van. I wound up having to pull out of school, as I couldn’t focus on my studies. Moronically, I returned there the following August, once again thinking, “I’m so close, I might as well finish out here”. I was still miserable there. That year came and went, and I was still dissatisfied there, so on the advice of Nadina, I applied to Aquinas College, was accepted, and enrolled in classes. After all those years of trying to feel accepted at a school, and comfortable at a school, I found one in Aquinas.
I’ll finally be putting on baccalaureate attire in May, only a few short weeks from now. Looking back on it all, I’m proud of how hard I’ve had to fight, and I’m proud to be graduating from a college I can say that I love, without hesitation. And in spite of that pride I feel after all the struggles I’ve had to get here, I still find that I’m scared. I can say, “I wish I started at Aquinas”, until no breath remains in my lungs, yet the fact remains that I will be finishing here. It doesn’t take away the fact, though, that I’m still scared. Graduation is a scary, yet exciting thing. Staring into the vastness that lies beyond, no matter how scared, I’m proud of where my college career, thus far, has brought me.