The Night Before College

Too many years ago, August, I was a recent high school graduate. I had a party at our house, the last of the summer. The next morning I would be heading to college.

The party wound down late into the night, and I collected the friends and put them to bed / couch / floor space, getting everyone situated.

I then went out the front door and sat on the steps under the clear night and cried until I couldn’t breathe.

You see, these last two years of high school were some of the best for me. I hadn’t fit in well most of the years before, and it was here, in Maryland, I had finally found a place, found myself.

And I knew that tomorrow that would change forever. This next stage of life was coming for all of us. We were separating, spreading out, not just going to college, but leaving the area and each other. (And a good number of us wouldn’t connect again until social media started.) All starting tomorrow.

I started to sing to myself. The first song that came to mind. I sang and the words broke through the tears, calming me.

Yes, everything I knew would be changing. But I was ready, prepared. I wasn’t the same insecure kid who had moved here two years before. I had found myself amongst the amazing friends I had made. I knew I could do this.

That song? the tune that got me through this moment? the one I would remember forever? The one that I still turn up when it comes on the radio, sing along to and think of a time and friends long ago?

Where’s it At? by Beck.

Ok, so life’s soundtrack isn’t always perfect. But that’s ok too. This song would bring me strength and memories all the days to come, and all the days yet to. Tomorrow is coming. It will be time to go to school, move, find new friends, learn new things, it will be time to see who you will become.

Sing along as you go.