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The Last 4 Years: a Contemplation

Well, I’m done.

It’s strange. I feel like a mix of an a-bomb, the “Hallelujah” chorus of Handel’s Messiah, floating just under the surface of a body of water, and David Tennant’s heart wrenching “I don’t wanna go” as the tenth Doctor are all going off in my head in turns, but I’m more or less utterly calm on the outside.

Maybe it’s just that I’ve freaked out about it so much over the past few weeks—the past year, really—that I’m more or less done. I’ve come to accept it: I’m a big, important computer scientist, and soon, I will be unleashed on the world to wreak utter havoc with your online retail experience. I won’t be a student anymore.

Well, not really. I mean, I won’t be attending a school, but you can bet money, food, or various parts of your body that I will keep on learning. That’s who I am; I love knowledge. If I could just walk into a library and soak up all its knowledge, I would. So, I guess that nothing’s really going to change, other than what I do during the day. Like I said, your online retail experience will never be the same. And now, you’re going to be forever paranoid. (This is probably going to be made all the worse by the recent Big Brother leaks that have rocked the U.S. news. I’m sorry.)

Looking back, I can’t say I have many regrets. A few, but none that keep me up at night. If nothing else, I do what I feel comfortable with—that was one of those lessons I learned early on—we’re talking kindergarten, here.

I’ve been a student for the past 17 years. 19-ish, if you count pre-school. I did learn a lot there. Like how to make paintings with colored shaving cream. And how to duck and cover during an earthquake. And that I really, really hate fire alarms. REALLY.

In many ways, college is supposed to be the culmination of our learning. But, thinking back on it, I don’t know that that’s necessarily true. We start general in grade school and go specific in college. Sure, there’s distribution requirements, but it’s easy enough to mold those into what we really want. Not that that’s a bad thing—we need to come into who we are as naturally as possible, and focus on what we want. These four(-ish) years are incredibly crucial, but then, you could make that argument for almost any other moment in your life. I am who and where I am today because I went to college, and a lot of things would definitely be different had I not chosen this path. But I didn’t learn what life is all about. I didn’t learn everything I wanted to—there’s just no way I could do that in four or even ten years.

What I have learned (on a more serious note than a few posts previous) is this: Life is learning. Life is scary. Life is exciting. Life is experiencing ups and downs. Life is unexpected. Life is constantly changing, and even when it isn’t, the world keeps on turning.

I think a lot of this can be summed up as follows:

Des’ree–“You Gotta Be”


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