As you may (or may not) have noticed, I haven’t been doing a lot of blogging lately. But it’s not because I’m going through a “non-blogging phase” or anything like that. It’s actually because I have been going through a major transition in my life by moving to a new city and going to a new, much bigger, much different kind of school than I have ever been to before.
So my life lately has been packed full of ups – but, as they are apt to do, a few downs have squeezed themselves in there as well. Academically, everything is hugely exceeding my expectations in every way, and I’m absolutely stoked for every one of my classes. I guess the “down” part would be the social aspect. Not that I’ve been having a hard time talking to people or anything, but I always seem to forget that in a transition to a new place, there is always the awkward “making friends” stage.
There are two kinds of people: people who are good at making friends, and people who are good at keeping friends. (And there are people who are good at both, who don’t appreciate their gift, and those unfortunate few who are good at neither.) I’m the keeping kind, and making friends exasperates me. Actually, trying to make friends always makes me question the value of our society. (No exaggeration. …Well, maybe a little exaggeration.) Making friends seems to rely so much on small nuances: whether or not you think the person’s voice is annoying or their eyes are captivating. And we all observe each other carefully, upon first encounter, to see if we’re all keeping the appropriate social rules.
Anyway, I think of the process of “making friends” as kind of pointless and foolish. So although I have been putting forth effort to talk to my classmates and my roommates, I’ve been accepting a more independent lifestyle. I like it. I think it would be perfect except for the fact that I remember so many good times when things were different and I had plenty of friends. This week, I’ve often felt that the rest of my entire four years here at school will be as, well, lonely as this first week. Mainly because of my lack of motivation to make friends. Maybe that wouldn’t be the most horrible thing in the world, but either way I know, intellectually, that it will change. (I repeatedly have to take deep breaths and remind myself of this.) In some ways I feel as though I’ve gone through a “life transplant” of sorts. Where is the person I used to be? The person I once thought I was? The person I once professed myself to be? My own new tendencies and inclinations are a surprise to me. A pleasant surprise, since I have always wanted to be more independent, but admittedly a little bittersweet. It’s like I’m finally saying goodbye to the teenager in me. A goodbye I’ve wanted to say for a long time, but a goodbye nonetheless.
Amid this period of self-discovery and reflection, my writing teacher had the class do our first assignment, describing ourselves a little differently than we normally might. My next blog posts will be a little fewer and farther between since I'll be a lot busier than I was this summer, but I'm planning on posting some stuff I'm doing for school, which I'll work harder on and be more proud of.
I am the green M&Ms. I am the shower in the morning that’s just a little too cold. I am the stripe on a polka dot shirt. I am the bear in a campground – “She’s more afraid of you than you are of her.” I am an eye roll and a silent laugh.
I am the little-known Shakespeare play. I am the owl crying, “Who?” I am the map asking, “Where next?” I am the too-small shoe that pinches your toes.
I am driving my car ten miles above the speed limit. I am shouting to mountains, trying to change them. I am bittersweet chocolate with almonds. I am the bass section; “can you hear me?”
I am just like you. I am not like you. I am myself.