When I was in fourth grade, We got these bright yellow folders, that had in large writing, CLASS OF 2000! Scrawled across the front. all sorts of information was tucked into the folder, probably about our promising futures, and our lives that were to be full of success and joy and happiness, because we had the dubious distinction of being in the class of the new millennium.
Ten years ago today, I graduated from high school. Full of nervous anticipation, I boarded the school bus at my high school, (our graduation ceremonies were located at a local college) I was tapping my feet, and trying to concentrate on not falling on my face in front of a couple hundred people (mission: accomplished!) but the whole time I was distracted. I had gotten a phone call earlier in the day from the Director of Emergency Services for the American Red Cross Chapter that I volunteered for, asking me If i wanted to go to North Dakota for three weeks to help out with flood relief. And oh, by the way, the flight leaves tomorrow. I said yes, and was mentally packing during most of the ceremony. It all kind of passed in a blur, and then it was over, and I was on a plane.
When I graduated high school, I had a plan. I was going to volunteer with the Red Cross in the summer, I was going to work at Great Adventure, and in the fall, I was going to start my Americorps year with City Year in Rhode Island. I had direction, and purpose, and I was going to do good things.
I think a lot of people look on their past selves, and kind of smile, and shake their heads, and think about how confused they were. And in some respects, That girl who was 18 and about to grow up pretty fast didn't know what she was doing. But on the other hand, I think of what that 18 year old would think about where my life is now. And I think it would make her sad.
In order to make my 18 year old self less sad at my life, I have realized I need A Plan. A Plan to make things better, and to work on the things that make me unhappy. Part of my inertia, I think, is not really knowing what I want to do, and kind of letting the status quo stand, until i figure it out. Well, nothing is going to change If I don't make some choices, and take some chances. So that's what I'm going to work on this summer.
And like I told Potter, when he wanted to shave his head like a Cue-ball last night, you only live once.
*And Happy Birthday to Andrea, my friend and High School classmate, who had her birthday on our graduation day, which had to have sucked. Joyeux anniversaire ! (I would link to her blog, but she doesn't have one. She should though!)