At the end of my senior year of high school, I wrote an article for my school’s newspaper called “Farewell,” as a way to spite everyone I hated. Which was basically everyone — particularly my graduating class — and wish them luck on their terrible lives. I think it was pretty successful at getting the reaction I wanted and it was cathartic for me at a time when I was really lost and angry.
So, I thought it would be nice since I am almost finished with my writing B.F.A. and done with my term as opinions editor for The Connector, to write another farewell piece that is not so bitter, not about spite and generally thankful. I wanted to use this article as an opportunity to thank all of the people who have helped me over the course of this strange chapter of my life — especially Jessica Clary, staff advisor for The Connector and SCAN Magazine.
I started working with student media in the spring of 2016 and it has been a major part of my experience at SCAD since I got here in the fall of 2015. I remember hearing about the radio station at the table they had set up in the lobby of Spring House and my first meeting as a contributor at The Connector. Now, it’s kind of surreal to be coming up on my last quarter of classes and the end of my involvement with student media as a manager and an editor.
Working at the radio station and the newspaper made my time at SCAD actually worth all the money I now owe to the government. Not just because of all of the cool opportunities I’ve had — like visiting [adult swim] or interviewing some of my personal heroes — but because of the people I have gotten to work with and what I was able to learn about myself in the process. My classes and professors have taught me a lot, but this will actually be what I remember about college.
These have been the weirdest four years of my life so far for a number of different reasons that aren’t really appropriate to share in this context. I’m still kind of in the middle of it, so I am not sure if the full gravity of everything has even set in yet. But, I’m unrecognizable to myself from who I feel like I used to be, and not entirely sure of how to handle it.
For a long time, I wanted things to slow down. I’ve wanted a break so I could actually compose myself or at least feel like I could rest until I was ready. But, the reality is that life is never going to slow down. If anything, it’s going to pick up speed now that I am about to step out into adulthood —whatever that is supposed to be.
Sometimes I feel like if things slowed down enough I might be able to unpack everything and finally understand the significance of where I’m headed and where I’ve been. But, even though life is going to continue to be relentless and never slow down, I know that I am in a better place now because of being thankful and letting go of a lot of the spite.
I don’t know if I could have made it to this point or have made it at all without the help of people like Jessica guiding me along the way and showing me a better way to be. There are plenty of things I’ve learned through my time with student media that I am going to carry with me and use in the near future, but the things that I am going to remember most are when I was able to get a really great piece of advice when it counted, or someone was just genuinely kind when I needed it most.