By the time this post is published, it will be September. For the last 17 years, September has meant going back to school. But not this year.
I thought it would feel weirder than it feels right now. I thought that in August, when my younger social media friends are posting about school life, that I would feel like I should be in school, not working still. But it doesn’t. It’s September, I’m still working, and it feels normal.
Maybe it’s because I’m used to being busy during the day. Maybe it’s because the weather hasn’t turned cooler yet. Maybe it’s simply because I’m distracted by all the other things I’m doing right now. Whatever the reason, I haven’t felt sentimental yet.
Okay, that’s not completely true. I do miss being on campus surrounded by beautiful buildings and other people my age. I miss all the free time I had, even if a lot of it was spent doing homework. I miss having most of my close friends close by.
But there are a lot of things I don’t miss. For one, I don’t miss actually being in class. By the time May came around, I was more than ready to say goodbye to that. I like learning, but when you’ve been sitting in classes for 17 years, it gets old.
I also don’t miss living off one lump sum. I was lucky enough not to have to get loans, so when I worked during breaks, it was pretty much solely for my living expenses, and I always made just enough for exactly that. But I really had to watch my spending. While I haven’t quit doing that now, of course (budgeting is a good idea for every stage of life), it’s been nice to have a regular paycheck that doesn’t look to be ending anytime soon.
And perhaps most importantly, I do not miss living with roommates. I had good roommates, as they go, but I am so, so not a people person. I hated living with the possibility of anyone coming in at any hour. Now, aside from living with my fiance (which is wonderful, by the way), I’m in complete control of my household. No one comes to our house unless we are expecting and inviting them, and that’s exactly the way I like it.
I know a few people who get really sentimental and nostalgic about anything once it ends, even if it was awful while it was happening. In a way, I guess that’s good. It makes you happy with your life. If you look back and see only the good stuff, how can you not be satisfied with the way your life is going? But I don’t remember stuff like that. In fact, I probably lean more the opposite way.
Even with my mostly-pessimistic views, however, it seems to me that the older I get, the more my life improves. High school was pretty good. College was even better. And now, during my first September ever not being in school, I’m getting married and trying to start a career. Apparently, September will always hold some kind of significance for me, and if things go the way they’ve been going, the future looks pretty darn great.