How is that even possible? I swear it was only a few months ago I was attending Junior Day at Judson. I approached the visit skeptical– even doubtful – about the possibility of a serious education and bearable college experience at a tiny women’s Christian college in the middle of nowhere. (I was only visiting because my parents really liked the idea of a tiny women’s Christian college in the middle of nowhere.)
I remember the ride home after the full day of touring and brochures. Contrasting the ride to Marion (consisting of my head leaned against the window, dreading a Saturday spent in the middle of nowhere at a virtually unknown school), I sat in the backseat happily chirping away with my parents, planning out my future at Judson. It was settled. I had found my home. I was seriously disappointed at the realization that I had an entire year left of high school.
I’m pretty sure that it was only about a month ago that I got upset about a storm that swept through south Alabama on May 21, 2010, causing graduation to be held in the auditorium. This meant that each graduate had 5 tickets to distribute to family. With most of my immediate family in attendance, I remember the displeasure at how quickly my time in the spotlight lasted. I recall thinking, “After four years of curfews, rivalries, heartbreaks, and senile teachers, all I get is 2.4901 seconds to walk across a stage? Really? I sure hope someone got a picture...”
As the river of royal blue flowed out of the auditorium and down the steps, our class president (my best friend) settled down the eager graduates, hats in hand, by yelling, “The party don’t start ‘til Sierra Young gets here!” Finally, the end of the alphabet resulted in a puddle of blue jumping around, yelling, throwing hats, and running into each other while attempting to retrieve them. With so many family and friends gathered around, it was complete chaos. And each element of this mass confusion equaled one tear drop, which broke free at the realization that I COULDN’T FIND MY FAMILY after about 15 minutes of searching.
My mommy made it ok though. (:
I remember taking pictures with everyone, and thinking how strange a tomorrow without them would feel like. I was fearful; John, Amelia – my best friends– were my comfort zone and security blanket. I didn’t know what I would do without them.
I just want to say that I do NOT remember taking a cold milk carton from the cafeteria on that humid, post-storm May evening after wearing an insulated cap and gown for several hours.
Oh, am I wrong? I have a bad sense of time, you say?
Hmm. Well, I’m positive when I say that it was only a few weeks ago that I wrote my first piece as a student blogger for Judson College. I remember sitting in tears at my brand new laptop, staring at the picture of that heartfelt goodbye hug with my baby brothers – swearing that just the day before we had taken a two-year-old Jake to the hospital with a broken leg, while a toddling Tucker still called our dad “My Darryl.”
My concept of the passing of time has apparently not improved. I still can’t fathom it.
I feel like a whole new person, when I compare myself to each of those girls.
That little high school skeptic needs to recognize. Judson College is place where students are blessed with a 17 to 1 student-faculty ratio – giving us enough one-on-one attention to not only pass, but excel. It is an institution that recognizes the extraordinary potential of women, and chooses to feed that fire in a learning environment free of distractions called boys. (And though you may not think it makes a difference, take it from me: IT DOES.) Judson College is where girls have the opportunity to become women of God.
The graduate needs a hug. I want to tell her, “Your new and amazing friends are just around the corner. You’ll be rooming with the freshman class song leader, so you’ll get to help write the hockey day song, as well as the other class songs! The two of you will have spats as well as laughs. You’ll make a Spice Girl music video, deal with the loss of a friend’s mom, do an interpretive dance to the Bohemian Rhapsody, avoid each other every now and then, complain about the lamp staying on, borrow clothes, experience an Easter Bunny attack, become twins in the Duck Family(:, and learn to love each other unconditionally. Your big sister – she’s amazing! In just a few short months, you’ll wonder what you ever did without her. She’ll be like your mom-away-from-home, and she’ll be one of those people you can trust with your life. During second semester, you’ll get to know this really great girl named Rebecca. You’ll laugh with each other about Julian Smith youtube videos, talk about all things spiritual, collaborate on a blog and spend one day a week at paradise – I mean, Barton’s Beach – wishing for a tan. In other words, don’t worry kiddo! Even though the fact that you can’t find your family is the perfect analogy of how you think your tomorrow will feel, you won’t be alone. The time in between now and these amazing friendships will be the perfect opportunity to deepen the most important Friendship.”
The brand new college freshman needs to not call her parents so much, stop taping so many pictures on the wall, and DO HER HOMEWORK.
Consider this your warning, high school skeptic. Receive this first-class, express delivery, air-mailed hug, high school graduate. And freshman... stop being melodramatic.
That’s right. I camouflaged advice for you as advice for my former self. We’ve all been there. Take the advice; and put an I-know-it’-all-gonna-be-ok smile on your face. ;)