you are a senior. this is happening.

Dear Abbey,

You are a senior. This is happening. In less than a year from now, you will have lots to learn about the workforce, making rent, work-life balance, living with another human being, understanding how insurance works, cooking, and growing up.

You are a senior. But just because you’re growing up, does not mean you’re grown up. You are not old. You are not experienced. You have plenty of mistakes to make, adventures to explore, and moments to love before you become old. So don’t think for a second that you can’t still receive help once you’re out of the house, across the country, or whatever part of the world you decide is your fit.

You are a senior. Your friends and you are all heading off in different directions. Some lawyers, business people, teachers, non-profit administrators, and some still no clue. Enjoy every moment with them. I know you are introverted, but this is your year to hug, laugh, cry, dance, drink, travel and do everything you can with the people you love. Maybe you’ll see them again later down the road at a wedding or reunion or by total coincidence. Maybe you won’t. Be with them anyway.

You are a senior. You are going on your sixth year in a relationship. This is the last year you will have to maintain long distance. I know you are excited to live with the person you love, but take this last bit apart to focus on you and prepare yourself for what lies ahead. And don’t get too excited for the next steps that you don’t take the time to appreciate your relationship now. Living together will be wonderful, but so are the last few drives you’ll get to see your partner, the last meals you’ll eat in these college towns, and the last nights you’ll sleep on a futon mattress on the floor in your dorm.

You are a senior. You’ve been an RA for what is now going on your third year. You’ve never not lived in the dorms in school. You’re turning 22 and ready to not use shower flip-flops, community bathrooms, and eat from the dining halls. You are ready to struggle to make rent and make cheap meals and go to work. You’re tired of dorm life, of undergrad. But you’ve done good, kid. You worked hard. You made sacrifices that will be worth it in the end. You will thank yourself later for not only the money you saved, but the knowledge you have taken away from your job, the people you’ve met because of it, and challenges you’ve faced.

You are a senior. You are stressed more days than not. You study all night just to nap the next day. You are constantly worried. But don’t be. Life takes time. Maybe it will unfold in perfect timing and maybe it won’t. But you are talented, intellectual, and ambitious. Good things are coming for you. This year is for planning, but it is also for breathing. Relax a bit and trust in yourself. Trust in your abilities. You are capable of many things you don’t even yet know. You can and will be something truly wonderful.

You are a senior, and you are okay.


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