Summer is nearing its close, as everyone is scrambling to tie up loose ends before school time, bidding fairwell to all the projects we vowed to finish during vacation, but somehow didn't. It's ok though, autumn brings yet another chance to find balance. The temperature drops nicely, a new harvest arrives, and proximity to Christmas brings a general feeling of joy.
School is starting soon, not for me but for my parents who work in the school system. For lots of my friends too, who are embarking on graduate school. I have been working, navigating young adulthood, so the concept of summer does not hold the same significance. But, I can recall that nervous feeling that settled in the pit of my stomach the week or so before school started.
On the flip side, school starting always meant seeing dear friends again. In our university bubble, distance was no obstacle. Your entire scholastic and social network was within a block or two radius of you. Last minute yoga classes, dinners at the Tombs, and wanderings on M Street with a latte and stimulating conversation were plentiful. Staying up late, flustered about pending deliverables was never pleasant but at least we were in good company.
I don't have to pack up my dad's Chevy pickup, or negotiate how much stuff I can fit into a tiny bedroom this September. It was a special time for me, but I am not necessarily longing for it all again. I firmly believe each chapter in your life is the best one, or at least I should strive to make it the best one. Neither the past nor the future are within our grasps as firmly as the present. What I do long for again is the connectivity that college afforded me. Studying alongside gifted young people from all over the country and world, with professors at the forefront of their respective fields. Nonetheless, something's in the air, something good.
I have noticed of late a general rekindling of relationships (plural) that I treasure. Not that I ever intended to lose touch with people I care about, but it happens sometimes. Everyone is off leading their own lives and there are only so many hours in the day to fit it all in. Whenever I feel saddened by this change in circumstances, I reassure myself that regardless of how much time passes, people that occupy a place in your heart are never really that far away. Nothing replaces actual communication though, so it is uncanny, and wonderful, how all these exchanges came at once. Last minute visits, long overdue catch up phone calls, and simple message exchanges have been so refreshing. Maybe the universe has a way of keeping kindred spirits aligned. Regardless of the explanation, my heart is glad.
Even though I won't be starting another year of coursework, I can feel that same excitement of returning to the hilltop by strengthening ties with the friends I forged there. It is essential to be connected; it makes us human. My September resolution will be to not only grow professionally, but to continue nurturing the friendships I was blessed to find. Sounds like school is in session for me too.