Work brought me back to campus this week for the second time in the last two months since I graduated almost (YIKES) a whole year ago. Each time I return, I am smacked in the face with nostalgia, “I used to live there, we used to gossip about bitchy girls over there, we used to dance our way to class here, I used to get coffee here, I ran into that awful and regretful hook up over there….” etc, etc. So much happens in four years…the good, the bad, and the ugly.
I am reminded of the actual happenings but I can also tune in to exactly how I felt on particular parts of campus and at particular times in my journey. Passing through the different buildings, hearing up to six different languages in one hallway of rooms, and overhearing a casual yet completely intense political debate, I am reminded of how difficult it was for me to feel intelligent while at Georgetown University. I’m just going to go ahead and say it, it’s hard to feel smart at Gtown unless of course you are one of the really smart ones. I was surrounded by some Harvard rejects, high school valedictorians, and type-A, over-achieving politically, medically, and economically driven and inspired minds all the time which left a lot of room for self-doubt.
That is a low point of memory. My memory reminds me of the times of pure stress, procrastination hell, hatred, and complete loss of hope but then I saw her. I saw a girl sitting on the floor reading on a book outside a 2nd floor classroom in ICC. I used to be her and I used to be her quite happily. I loved (ok, nerd alert), I used to love going to class really early and getting a spot in that quiet hallway. After seeing her and being reminded of that nerd-esque slash very intelligent side of myself I decided then and there to change my perspective. Here’s my new perspective: I did it. I effing did it, biotches.
No matter what I do or don’t do from now on in my entire life, I will always have the big, shiny diploma framed in a big, bold frame letting the entire world know in Latin that Christine Leigh Nigara graduated from Georgetown freakin’ University. BOOOO-YAH!
Everyone will tell you that it’s what you make of that big, shiny diploma framed in that big, bold frame and what you make of the experience, the relationships formed, and the journey and well, of course it is! Trust me, I’m not denying that but here’s the thing…think about the zillions of things in life that can be taken from you. Someone can take away your job, your relationship, or steal any of your material possessions. Some higher power, God or whatever you believe in, can take away your health or even your life but no one, not my boss, my boyfriend, my brotha, my sista, my best friend, not even God can take Georgetown away from me. I did it and it’s done. I’ll always have Lau.
But hey! Even if Lau, the Georgetown library, falls to the ground, I’ll still have it in my blood, sweat, and tears. I’ll still know the work that went into that big, shiny diploma framed in the big, bold frame and I will be forever proud. With the last year not turning out quite as planned, (that’s a whole ‘nother can of worms but anyway) I needed to be reminded of a proud and satisfactory time in my life. I am proud of my school, my experience, and most importantly, myself.
Sassarella Says…what do you hang your hat on? Maybe it’s not school for you. Maybe you were once an incredible athlete who helped your team win a championship. Maybe you served time in the military. Maybe you ran for office and won or maybe you sent yourself abroad and had an irreplaceable cultural experience. Whatever makes you feel most proud about yourself should be something that cannot be taken away from you.