Breaking Free

Everyone always tells you senior year is rough. But I stopped trusting people after the presidential election of 1800, so I never believed them. The joke is on me, because I’m essentially busy every minute of every day. Even now I am multitasking—see, I am writing this blog but I am also crying on the inside. My suffering is nothing if not efficient.

Think of senior year as the middle section of the Venn diagram of life; on the left you have childhood. Sweet, innocent, full of refined sugars and Zac Efron. On the right you have adulthood. Loud, sudden, full of people expecting you to have opinions on drapery and cheese platters. Senior year is when the two sections begin to bleed into one another. I love Zac Efron and I have a lot of opinions on cheese plates. We’re kids, but we have very adult responsibilities. I have a water bill to pay. A water bill! Like some sort of drapery fiend!

And every day, it gets worse. We get closer and closer to being fully-fledged human adults. I, for instance, just spent five months applying for graduate school. There is nothing more adult than paying $400 in application fees just for a group of board members to tell you are dumb. The problem is that I am still excited about it. I’m over the moon to go to grad school. I’m bringing childlike excitement to serious life decisions. Which is such a senior-year mindset to have, trust me.

Applying for grad school is probably the most grown up thing I’ve ever done, simply because it means I’m actually forming a plan for the future.  Worse yet, I have back-ups to said plan. Adults can’t BS their way through life, despite the fact that that has worked for me the last 21 years. Adults have to have some semblance of control over the outcomes of their actions. Which is…new. College students, on principal, are the age group that have the least amount of control. I learned that my freshman year when I saw a student put a minimum of 36 cookies into a to-go box and take it back to their room.

So we need control. But we also can’t be buried in it. I don’t ever want to care about drapes. I never want to get over Zac Efron. I want to be an adult in the sense of air quotes; an “adult”. “Adults” look like normal adults, but have no idea how to fold fitted sheets. They get their adult card, but they are never going to use it to buy paint swatches. My hope for this generation is that we become an entire armada of “adults”. “Adults” are the kinds of people I want to hang out with. Seniors are almost “adults”, but not quite. We are more like “adults…?”, which is an entirely new subspecies. It’s only a matter of time before we get there, though.

Until next week, Ashley

Ashley is a senior Creative Writing major from Payette, Idaho.