No more pencils, no more books. No more teacher’s dirty looks.
The thing I hate about this time of year is seeing everyone stressed out beyond belief in regards to school. And I mean everyone.
A coworker of mine, Kelly, has been running herself ragged the past few days with making sure she has all their units in place for what she would like to ensure as her last year in community college before transferring to a CSU. I’m actually really glad she approached me with her stress because her counselor had listed unnecessary classes that would have made finishing next Spring damn near impossible. She’s a good person, but I fear she’s one glass of spilled milk away from having a complete breakdown. Luckily, there are a few peers near by that have dealt with our school’s terrible counselors and have offered to help ensure she graduates and moves forward.
Lily, a close friend of mine, has probably been the luckiest of the group as she just found out that the classes she’s signed up for this summer will give her the AA from our college, giving her at least an AA before she starts saving up to attend a four-year college down the road. The notion is still up in the air, but she’s a bright girl with visions of a greener future and I know she’ll make a huge difference for our planet.
My friend, Mark, recently had difficulties coming to terms with nearing the end of his school career. Ever the private person, he kept his fears and doubts locked away deep inside and only spoke about them to me once he was able to pull himself out of it. He had explained to me that the fear of having to graduate from school and get a real job and be a real adult – along with feeling the additional pressures of success and failure – had begun to weigh him down. As a result, he began skipping classes and turning in assignments late. It was almost as if his fear was forcing him to try and fail to postpone the inevitable.
I’ve been there. I’ve been that person for the past few years. I think that’s why finding out that there may be no way to recover from the hit my grades took at midterms was so harsh on me mentally. It hadn’t been like that for years. We’re talking 2005 here, people. That was around the time when I gave up on life. Now that I feel like I have a reason to take life a bit more seriously, it sucks when I don’t get it right. I have to keep reminding myself that I have goals and dreams and nothing to hold me back but myself.
Are we really so afraid of having it all that we’re more willing to take the route of pain over that of happiness? It reminds me of an episode of Phineas and Ferb where their older sister, Candice, had a Wizard of Oz inspired dream and took the harder route rather than the more fun one. Throughout the entire dream, the boys were trying to make her see that there was nothing to be afraid of with the more fun route, that the journey could and would be much more rememberable this way. Ever the pessimist, Candice refuses and puts her rag-tag group through Hell trying to make it to the Wizard, who ended up being her mom. She was made to feel guilty for not taking life by the horns and enjoying life every once in a while. When she wakes up, her boyfriend is waiting for her in a oversized, Phineas-and-Ferb-style vehicle filled with her younger brothers and their friends. She finally takes a chance on happiness and goes with it, just this once.
It’s hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel when your eyes have been adjusted to the darkness for so long. You start to think you’re hallucinating the vision before you, but I promise you there’s no reason to be scared. Whenever you doubt the ways of the Universe and think, “but what if it doesn’t work,” I challenge you to counter that doubt and think, “but what if it does?”