Dealing with Nostalgia
Blogger: Maddy Farkas
Happy Finals, my beautiful rays of sunshine amidst this dark and dreary week! In an attempt to finish (who am I kidding…start) my research paper, I decided to write this blog post. Now here I am, stressed about writing something worth reading. In other words, right back to square one. I’m in a constant state of stress these days, but it’s not always bad stress. Usually it’s normal, “too-busy-for-my-own-good,” stress. Like where I have so much to do that I forget about little things like doing my laundry or buying a Mother’s Day card. (Mom, don’t read that last line… I’ll pull it together by Sunday.) But now it’s actual, “get-your-work-done-you-horrible-procrastinator,” stress. One day I will regret watching both The Jimmy Neutron Movie and Freaky Friday during Finals Week, but today is not that day.
But the real stress actually has nothing to do with classwork. It comes from something I have been forcing myself not to think about for months and months. I’ve been through my share of graduations in my twenty years, and never has one felt as daunting as this one. No, I am not graduating, but a fair share of my friends are and it’s the first time that I’ve really been faced with the thought of not seeing some of my friends for a very, VERY, long time. High school graduation is different. It’s emotional, but after the ceremony you all go back to your homes and then the next day it’s back to the local mall and driving around town until midnight. People go their separate ways at the end of the summer, but eventually everyone returns for a break. You all share a collective home and one way or another you will be reunited. College is different. It is your temporary home, and after your education comes to an end you can’t return. (Ok, “can’t” is a strong word. I will definitely show up to pet the neighborhood dogs after I graduate.) But you know what I mean. After college, you probably won’t all be in the same place at the same time again. It’s a more permanent ending. Shoot, didn’t mean to be such a Debbie Downer. I promise I’m usually puking rainbows, but since it’s cloudy out I decided to be a bit more introspective. What I’m trying to say is, there are a lot of people on this campus that I will miss deeply. Whether they’re staying in the area or not, there’s something beautiful about stepping outside and running into your closest friends without having to plan it.
I’ve changed a lot during my time at Oxy. I grew out my hair and got bangs. I got jobs and quit jobs. I joined clubs. I discovered that coffee doesn’t work on me. That last one was devastating. But I know that I truly grew as a person, something I have not really stopped to think about until now. I’ve learned how to prioritize and when to let things go, and I know how to value the good things in life. What I still have not learned, however, is how to accept endings. I’m a sucker for nostalgia, what can I say. Sometimes (ok, often) I watch the series finale of Friends just to make myself cry. I spend 95% of my time scrolling through old pictures on Facebook and then deciding which ones I will print out to bring with me to the nursing home when I’m too old to take care of myself and want to remember exactly what happened during my college orientation. So now that graduation is approaching for the seniors, I’m finding myself going through waves of terrible nostalgia.
Tyler, remember that time I skyped you while you were away on Campaign Semester before I had even met you? I do. Jeremy, remember that time I met you at Experience Oxy! and then gave you a huge hug in the O-Team tunnel leading into the gym at Orientation? I do.
Mavis, remember that time we ditched Odesza to pig out at the Cooler in our Halloween costumes? I do. Sid, remember that time when we were late to every Bollywood rehearsal because you wouldn’t answer my wake-up calls? I do.
Olivia, remember that time everyone thought we were the same person, even your mom? I do. Emily, remember that time we sat in the Haines parking lot eating In-N-Out and talking about boys? I do. Jack, remember that time we walked around the entire Echo Park Lake waiting for Lollipop Records to come back from lunch break? I do.
Sarah, remember that time you showed up to my room at 12:30 at night to ask me to formal? I do. Maisy, remember that time we played Pictionary in Community Literacy and the kid drew an incomprehensible bear? I do.
Aaron, remember that time we caved and ate an entire box of Girl Scout cookies before class? I do. Aviva, remember that time I took literally all of your jobs on campus? I do. I could keep this post going for many pages, but if I get too much more sappy I will hate myself.
Long story short, a lot of people who will soon be leaving Oxy made a huge impact on who I am as a person, and it’s the worst feeling every time I think about going through another year on this campus without them. I’m not sure what I did to deserve them, but it warms my heart knowing that I got lucky enough to spend even one day with these gems. The real world is about to get a whole lot better, and I can’t wait to see my friends thrive. But also, for completely selfish reasons, please come back.