I Miss School, Already

BrockWhen I graduated from University in June, I wore a shirt and tie, received a diploma on stage in front of hundreds of blurry faces, and took pictures with family and friends. I knew what the day meant. I knew what it represented. I knew it was the final page of a novel much longer than a J.K. Rowling classic. I also knew that, come September, I would not be returning.

Well, it’s September. And as I sit here typing at 2AM, I am overcome with sadness. School officially starts in six hours and for the first time in my life, I won’t be anywhere near a classroom. I knew I would miss it, I just didn’t think it would be this soon. Today, it hit me like a brick to the forehead.

Knowing that most of my friends are back at school certainly doesn’t help. I’m currently stuck between wanting to know everything that is going on, and not wanting to hear a single word from anyone.

I don’t know if everyone feels this way when they graduate. I would imagine that some people jump right into a full-time job and never look back. I wish I could do that, but I am not wired that way. Too many rear-view mirrors in my head.

When everyone moved back to school a few days ago, I felt odd. I still feel odd. I feel like Kevin in the Home Alone movies. I feel like I forgot to move back. I feel like I’m late, very late. I feel like I lost my membership card to an exclusive club and got denied entry at the door.

I think we are all familiar with the lyric: “You don’t know what you’ve got til it’s gone.” This is true.

Well, the following verse reads: “They paved paradise and put up a parking lot.” I feel like my parking pass has expired.

I miss my friends.

I miss waking up in residence, glancing over at my clock with one eye partially open, and then making the split-second decision of waking up or going back to sleep for another fifteen minutes.

I miss walking around campus.

I miss timing my trip to the cafeteria for exactly 11:40AM – when all the food is out and I have a twenty minute head start on everyone coming from class at noon.

I miss staring down the individual in the cafeteria who changes the channel on the TV from TSN to CNN.

I miss texting my friends and making plans to meet somewhere.

I miss having to apologize for being a few minutes late.

I miss going for walks on campus at night.

I miss taking the bus for the first time of the year and forgetting which way the card swipes.

I miss sitting in the library by myself and studying until I am told to leave.

I miss arriving to exams with 30 minutes of sleep and leaving with a 90%.

I miss hearing people complain about their marks.

I miss having people tell me about their problems.

I miss late-night meals.

I miss sitting at a table cracking jokes with friends.

I miss going to class and sitting in my unassigned, assigned seat.

I miss going to class and seeing someone sitting in my seat – the one I’ve been in for the entire semester.

I miss intramurals. Oh man, do I miss intramurals.

I miss giving pre-game speeches that never work.

I miss playing video games with my roommate.

I miss being woken up from naps because someone is banging on my door, as if a fire is about to set me ablaze.

I miss hearing people call penne, “tubes”, because they aren’t Italian.

I miss eating pasta with sausage/shrimp and alfredo sauce for dinner.

I miss falling asleep at 7PM because the aforementioned pasta knocked me out.

I miss going to my friends’ houses and being served food.

I miss streaming sports on my laptop.

I miss pulling all-nighters to finish assignments.

I miss the view that greets me outside my window at 6AM after an all-nighter. (See above).

I miss calculating how many hours of sleep I will get right before I fall asleep.

I miss walking across the street to Tim Hortons and McDonald’s.

I miss the deadly wind on campus that can knock your socks off, whether you’re wearing shoes or not.

I miss following a routine.

I miss waking up every day and not knowing exactly what will happen that day.

I miss navigating my way through crowded hallways.

I miss leaving for a class on the other side of campus, 8 minutes before it starts, and arriving with my calves writhing in pain.

I miss it. All of it. I’m not ashamed to admit it.

I wish I could go back. I can’t. I wish I can relive every single moment a hundred times over. I can’t. I wish I were there. I’m not. I’m far away from it all, observing as an outsider. Observing as a member of society with a University degree. As a person unsure of what the future holds. As a person unwilling to forget about the last four years because of how great they were.

I didn’t write this entry so people can feel sorry for me. Nor did I write it so people can tell me to look forward to the future. I will be fine. I wrote it because I thought it was important to get this off my chest. I wrote it for the people in my position who might feel the same way – and if you don’t, I hope to be where you are one day, soon. I wrote it for the people currently in school, so they can cherish every single second of the experience.

I know I have to move on and I will. But for today, I can’t do that. The feeling of being somewhere, besides school, during the first week of September, needs getting use to.

Graduating was great. It is an achievement of which I am very proud. But to me, school was always more than a diploma. There is no piece of paper in this world that can replace the experience or the memories that were made outside of the classroom. It is the making of those memories that I will miss the most.

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About Paul

This is the part where I'm supposed to write something interesting about myself and you'll read it and think, "That's not that interesting." So let's not do that and just think about pizza instead, on the count of three. One, two, three. Donuts. Now, wasn't that interesting?
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249 Responses to I Miss School, Already

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  5. Mekhala V says:

    Reblogged this on The Voice Of My Conscience… and commented:
    Beautiful πŸ™‚

    I echo the sentiment. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Lea says:

    You know, Captain, (coming from a Boomer), there is nothing to stop you from being a student your entire life, even while working. I finished a BS in Geology in 1976, went to work as a geothermal exploration geologist in the fields of Nevada, Utah, Idaho, Oregon, New Mexico…then back to school as a geology grad student at the U of Arizona, working summers for a geothermal consulting firm and the Sohio Oil Company in SF…
    (taking a deep breath)
    a summer internship with Union Oil Company’s Geothermal Division for 9 months;
    3 months of unemployment–odd jobs like painting classes; community college courses in painting and communication…
    Then, the Golden Job–Research Associate at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory above the UC Berkeley Campus doing computer modeling of fluid and heat flow in fractured rocks; and spending my spare time developing my skills as a painter;
    They pay my tuition and I work part-time while pursuing a PhD at UC Berkeley, overqualifying myself for my job.
    So a postdoc at JPL in the Mars Program, continuing to develop my skills at a painter..
    A second postdoc at USC in Geobiology…
    Then, funding runs out and I get an unpaid position at UC Santa Barbara, where I write grant proposals, dipping into my hard-earned retirement savings….
    9 months after submission, I bring in a 3 year grant funding by EPA to study effects of Nanotechnology on Life, but when I realize that I’ll have to give up painting to manage and do all the work for the research while writing grant proposals to keep myself funded…
    I give up my science career and become a painter, allowing me to go back to school and earn an MFA in Digital Arts and New Media at UC Santa Cruz….

    You never know —- there are so many opportunities to pursue your dreams, even if those include being a lifelong student —
    You are off to having a great life!!!

    Lea

    Liked by 2 people

    • Paul says:

      I really appreciate you taking the time to type this out. Thanks for the advice! I’ve always had the mindset that I’m a lifelong learner, whether I’m in classroom or not, there is always something for me to learn. Thanks again, Lea!

      Like

  7. canablogs says:

    Reblogged this on .

    Like

  8. izza ifzaal says:

    You got me senti on this Paul! I miss it 😦
    I graduated in Feb this year and I should be proud waiting for this day but man this sucks! I want to go back to hostel do bitching,eating,sharing,chatting with my romies & I want to relive those moments again! aaaaack this life and I hate this quote “Nothing lasts forever” deep down i know how everything is suppose to go but still….

    Liked by 1 person

    • Paul says:

      I know, it’s tough. On the bright side, the fact that you miss it means that you had a great experience. Better to have that than have a bad experience and not miss it at all.

      Liked by 1 person

      • izza ifzaal says:

        Yoo!! :p regrets are something which I never carry as a baggage so I am glad I lived up to my fill & happy for you too… πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Adi, the Happy Lifeaholic says:

    Amen. I’m in this same boat now. It’s strange knowing that because I went to school in a different country…er no, continent, I’ll probably never see half of those kids ever again in my life! :/

    Liked by 1 person

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  11. Hi Paul! Just getting around to reading this- as usual, really well written post πŸ™‚ I definitely miss being in college too. For all the reasons you can think of (and some you’ve already listed.) But the thing I used to tell myself for awhile after I graduated was that if college truly was “the best time of my life,” like so many people say as they get older, I’m probably doing something wrong with my time spent in the present. So I’m really trying to do everything I can now- as a graduated-almost-adult- to make new memories that kick ass. So when I’m super old I can be like “ah yes college was great but I did X,Y and Z after those years and it was a ridiculously good time…” I also imagine myself pretty wrinkly and old looking at this point. Although, I’m half Filipino so I may just look like, 60 or something. Haha anyways, hope that all made sense… cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Paul says:

      That’s a good mindset to have! College was great because it was the last time in our lives that we’re surrounded by our friends in the same place at the same time. Now we’ve all branched out and have to find things to fill the void. And based on your picture you don’t look old or wrinkly at all! Then again I call myself an old man and don’t look it either. Meet you at the retirement home?

      Liked by 1 person

      • I knowwww it was so fun. Man. I wished I didn’t worry about grades/ papers so much… or stress haha but yeah, that’s a big reason why I haven’t left NYC yet- most of my close friends and bf are still here! I’ll be ready to leave in a couple years I’m assuming. And sure thing- I’ll be the little ambiguous Asian-y looking one probably hustlin’ at cards or board games (not sure what they do for fun at retirement homes, but based on stereotypes these feel like good activities.) Or I’ll be the one going for fast-slow walks around the home! Once I reach a certain age I’m just gonna to whatever I want haha

        Liked by 1 person

      • Paul says:

        Haha Asian-y looking hustler! We can race to the dining hall at 4PM for dinner! We can also stare out the window and look at birds while we listen to the other bicker about their grandkids who never visit.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Yessss! It’s on. I’m very competitive and I expect to be still so when I’m old. Oh and then for dinner we can eat lots of chocolate pudding. And ice cream. Since we may not have real teeth anymore haha so why not! Ohhhh man we have some grand plans!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Paul says:

        This sounds fun! Let’s fast forward about 40 years haha. Or we can go “tour” a retirement home and test out these daily routines.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Haha I’m worried it may be depressing. Or maybe it wouldn’t be… but I say we just wait it out the good ol’ natural way! Then, the retirement home will just be one huge surprise/ adventure!

        Liked by 1 person

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  13. LosiLosLoco says:

    I suppose that change of pace will be hard for me when I graduate from University. Mhh. But I get your pain. Because every summer I start to feel that way. I start to miss school. And I suppose I will be a little more grateful for every memory I make because one day, I won’t be there anymore. Thanks for sharing Paul.

    Liked by 1 person

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  17. Barrrie says:

    Your composition is great. I hope mine too gets better with time.

    Liked by 1 person

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