The End of an Era

Every child hears from his or her parents about a thousand times while he is growing up that “time goes by too fast.” My two personal favorites are, “it seems like just yesterday that you were in diapers” and “one day when you have kids you will understand.”  (K. Goodrich)  Until recently those little sayings just seemed like clichés that were in the parent rule book of things to say to children.However, as 2009 came to a close and a New Year and decade dawned with my graduation date slowly getting closer, the realization that time goes by way too fast hit me all at once.

When I was a little kid, and being the youngest of three, I could not wait to grow up. I saw my sisters getting the privileges that came with getting older and I could not wait until it was my turn. My sisters would stay up late and hang out with their friends without adult supervision. I just wanted the clock to speed up and make me old enough to have the same privileges as my sisters.  However, the want for the clock to speed up recently changed to a strong desire for it to, instead, slow down. All throughout my junior year I just could not wait to be a senior. Now that I am finally in the place where I always wanted to be, all I want is time to freeze and give me time to take in this season of life.

I have seen two sisters graduate and so it is not like I do not know what to expect, but in the back of my mind I had this idea that being a senior would be just all fun and games and pass by slowly because I wanted to be in college, or so I thought. I am having a great senior year.  However, there is this nagging thought in the back of my mind that it will all eventually come to an end. On top of that, all the stories I hear from people about how they never stayed in touch with their high school friends is haunting me.

Up until this time I thought I could not wait to graduate and move on to the next chapter in my life, a clean slate so to speak. Then the realization hit me that when I graduate in June it will be the end of a great era in my life and the beginning of a brand new one. All my life, until this point, I thought that when I would graduate from junior high and start high school that I would be starting a new chapter in my life. However, ending junior high and starting high school did not have any drastic change in my life.  I am still under my parents’ roof and protection and don’t have the total responsibility of taking care of myself.  However, as I have gotten older and to this place in my life, I have realized something: moving out and starting college will be the real start to the next chapter of my life. Come early August I am going to be left in a brand new place with a whole list of new responsibilities and jobs that I have never had before, a thought that is really scary to think about. I will be embarking on a brand new adventure that will not only test the things I have already learned but teach me new things along the way.

The starting of not only the new year but the beginning of a new decade has caused me to stop and realize that time really does go by a lot faster than expected. So what is the point? The point is that even though I would like time to slow down I know that it cannot. So instead of hoping for time to slow down and the future to be put on hold, my new, New Year’s resolution is to make every moment in this short life count. I have enjoyed and am enjoying the season of life that I am in. My philosophy is no longer trying to make the impossible time-freeze possible, but instead, it is to live up to another cliché: “live every day to the fullest.”

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