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Jenneth LeeD

United States

Dyslexic who wants to make a mark in the YA book market. Christian. Conservative. Licensed geek and nerd.

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Any thoughts would be much appreciated.

Eat, Drink, and Be Merry; For Tomorrow I Graduate

June 6, 2015

FREE WRITING

1

It’s five minutes until midnight. Tomorrow I graduate.

Ten years ago, I laid in bed awake crying quietly about becoming a senior and leaving my family for four long college years. As the years came closer, I felt as if I were being shoved along by an unseen Being across my timeline as my feet dug into the dark blue carpet of the time-space in retaliation. No matter how hard I tried to stay the age I was, the Being always won out.

I still feel like I’m being pushed down my timeline. I’m the kid who would happily live in her own little Neverland of a world. I’m the kid who agreed with her family when they said I should have a brick put on my head to keep me from growing any taller. I’m the kid who believed all my teachers when they said, “Thank me now. It won’t be like this in college.”

I never wanted to get out of the house. I never wanted to push the rebel button and skirt the edge of my parents’ authority. I never got my phone taken away or my text messages screened because my parents didn’t trust me. I was totally happy being a grade schooler. I knew exactly what faced me in that ugly world beyond full of politics, criminals, evil, economics, taxes, and terrorists.

But now I’m here, on the eve of my graduation. It feels like I’m getting married. Or the Reaping/Trial/Choosing in every YA dystopian novel. Or the day before my funeral. After tomorrow, everything is going to change whether I want it to or not. There’s no [control] + [Z], no backspace, no “esc” button, and no “revert to original.” Sheesh, there’s not even a “Are you sure you want these settings? Yes/Cancel.” It’s like logging onto my computer and realizing the OS has completely dowloaded all the new software updates I’ve been procrastinating on. Or when Google decides to change my email layout. Welcome to your new inbox.

My graduation party was today. Seventy people showed up bearing gifts, cards, and money. I hadn’t seen such an event in my honor since my ten-year-old birthday party. Normally I’m the one giving gifts. It’s not supposed to be the other way around. Congratulations? For what? It was an entirely new territory for me. I told my mom as we were picking out party decorations, “Mom, it feels like I’m picking out my own coffin.” Ha, imagine me when I reach my fortieth birthday party.

But seriously, I do feel like it’s a “eat, drink, and be merry; for tomorrow we die” sort of thing. This is it. I’m a new person after tomorrow. I’m a college student. My grade-school-self is dying tomorrow.

But as a college student, I’ll be able to rewrite my identity. I’ve made my fair share of mistakes as a grade student. I’ve been obnoxiously obsessed with animals and fandoms that people won’t ever forget. Back as an elementary student, I was so anti romantic relationships (I mean, really, it was elementary. There shouldn’t be romantic relationships) that I voiced my opinion to everyone within hearing range. I kept the feat up until sometime last year or the year before, when I finally realized I was the only one every guy overlooked because “she doesn’t believe in that stuff. Don’t bother with her.” Well…I still don’t want the drama package that comes with every relationship in a small Christian school…but I wouldn’t mind being somewhat liked by someone cool….

College is the time to change all that. I get to reinvent Jenneth Dyck. When I walk down that aisle Sunday night with the other ten in my graduating class, and I receive that diploma, and I turn that tassel…that’s when I’m going to change. I’m going to keep the best of Jenneth Dyck, take it, refine it, and add to it. That Being that was lovingly pushing me down my timeline knew exactly what I was getting into, and what I’m still getting into. He’s planning something awesome for me in the years ahead.

It’s fifteen minutes after midnight. Today I graduate.

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