Some goodbyes are difficult – like saying goodbye to close friends or family you know you won’t see for a while, while others are not so hard – like how I felt about saying ‘peace out’ to my Astronomy class as a freshman.
The goodbye I am thinking and talking about today is the au revoir to my hometown and the house I grew up in.
The interesting part is that I’ve already said metaphorical goodbyes many times before. I said goodbye when I first went to camp GUCI at age 8. I said goodbye whenever I traveled or had a new experience that opened my eyes to the world beyond the 4-1-9, and I said goodbye when I chose to be a Gator.
In many ways, this goodbye is not much different than the other times; I am used to packing my bags and leaving home for a prolonged period of time. However, this time, I’m leaving my bedroom much emptier. I won’t be back to sleep in my bed. I won’t sit at the desk where I drew covers of made-up magazines, wrote college applications and began some of my first blog posts. The familiar details of my home and my town will become memories, part of the past. It’s definitely not a bad thing – it’s a part of life, and it feels surreal to be at this point.
In a way, it is exhilerating to start the new year on this exciting note. This is a brand new journey, which is always a bit nerve-wracking – but if I have learned one thing in the past year, it is that the most unfamiliar situations oftentimes turn out to be the most transformative and the most positive.
Coming up: a Schild road trip extravaganza, feat. a variety of granola bars and a makeshift iPhone AUX/speaker contraption (you don’t even want to know). If this isn’t an adventure, I don’t know what is.
Here’s to a new year, new stories and new opportunities. Happy 2017!