One month. It seems surreal to think that all we have ever known in essence is gone. For the majority of our life we all have always anticipated another year of school, another year of school lunches and another year of waiting to figure it all out. Yet I have come to realize that the painful, yet beautiful truth of it all is that we will never have it all figured out.
Everyone says that this is completely terrifying, but in some strange way it is comforting, beautiful, and yet poetic. St. Thomas for many of us has been this safety net of familiarity- it was often an expectation for us to go to school, to graduate with a degree and to get a job. Yet, the thing that scares me the most is that I am going to lose all my friends. Not in the sense that we’re all moving on and leaving our bubble we have called home for 4 years, but that I am going to lose my friends in who they are. Expectations are the driving force for this problem that encourages security over passion and the notorious over the unknown. We fear what each other will think. We fear our parents. We fear society.
I think it scares to see my friends- so creative, inspiring and compassionate drift away. It makes me dwell on the moments where we used stay up late where we cared so little, yet cared so much. The days we talked about what we wanted from the world and weren’t afraid to say it aloud. The walks in the quad where you gave that unforgettable smile to a stranger- just because it was sunny.
I think that I’m hard on people because I realize how young we all really are. I fear we are losing all these inspiring, compassionate and amazing 20-some year-olds that have the potential to fret the unpaved path. To follow a dream, to open a business or work at a non-profit. I want to see our graduating class inspire the next St. Thomas graduating classes to come and to show them that it’s okay to be unconventional. To give them that soft gaze that everything is going to be alright.
The reality of it all is that it’s going to be alright. Life has this astounding way of working itself out with or without us walking by its side. All I know is that I don’t want to let my compassionate 23-year old spirit away- I don’t want ordinary. I know that I am not alone in these feelings and I can feel it in my soul. So I encourage all of us to not fret the days to come. I encourage us to let those youthful spirits continue once we graduate and continue to be passionate about whatever drives you.
Travel the world. Open that business. Find the person of your dreams. Dare to be great. Expect extraordinary- and have the courage to seek this out.
By: Katlin Nordyke, BUSN200 Coordinator