Taps

I can’t believe it’s all over already. I’m back in Athens, back in my apartment, and about to get back into the swing of school. I spent the majority of the evening unpacking and trying to get my room into some semblance of organization. I folded away all my blue polos and navy knee socks, not without smoothing them over one last time, promising myself I’ll be using them again in only ten months. Unpacking today had a sense of finality, a feeling of taking my summer and spreading it back into my life here. Everything I took out of that suitcase had a memory, a thought, an image, all creating a picture of the most extraordinary thing that’s ever happened to me. The bear lying next to me right now is wearing a blue Interlochen sweatshirt, not unlike the one of mine that is hung over the black wrought iron of my bed. I can’t bring myself to cut off the friendship bracelets just yet. My glittery locker tag has a proud new place on my door, and with just a glimpse of it, all of the feelings I experienced this summer wash over me at once. It’s an odd mixture of utter contentment and a twinge of nostalgia for something I feel like I’ve known for far longer than seven short weeks. It’s a feeling of finally being at home, of making mistakes and growing, of meeting people who’ve change my heart. It’s bitter tears, regret, and hope. It’s french braids and laughter, slumber music in the night, and the immense spattering of stars across the darkest sky I’ve ever seen. It’s knowing that the place that I’ve always longed for is real, and it holds the same power for someone else. It’s the tremendous roar of rain on the cabin roof. It’s learning more of who I am while finding a world I fit into. It’s ice cream cones, the giggle of teenage girls, and the promise of something bigger than ourselves. It’s the jumble of music on the pathways, the call of taps at night. It’s girls in bright red socks. Yes, yes. It was a good summer.

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