First, it was a well-attended event. St Mary's people are so awesome. I loved that the new president talked about The Pub opening on campus. Yes, we have a pub and that's exactly what it is called. We don't need any stinkin' hyperbole at SMCM. The Pub will suffice and it states exactly what kind of establishment it is, thankyouverymuch. See, St Mary's is an interestesting place. Full of history, academically challenging, free thinking, progressive, crunchy and highly regarded. Most students can be found barefoot, carrying a frisbee, high/drunk, protesting, but always keeping up with schoolwoork. I LOVED my time there. For once, I actually fit in, which was tough to do at my huge high school. I also did not need to be preppy, country, punk, or whatever. Just being me was fine. Accepted. Respected. Appreciated.
Then, why did I find myself doubting myself. I felt a little strange. Kinda like I did when I transferred from CofC. Like an outsider. I also feel like I have struggled with my career and personaly choices for quite some time. Most SMCM people marry a classmate, go to grad/prof school, settle down. Not me. I went to grad school (twice) but eloped with someone twice my age in another state. Not the same path as the people there. I was wowed by an old professor that I only encountered to sign off on some paperwork when he was the acting provost about 15 years ago. Gosh darn it if he didn't remember me. Like really. He remembered my major, focus of study, etc. Weird. But that's SMCM. I remember being on a first name basis with the dean, being a campus leader, graduating Phi Beta Kappa. But did I miss out on things? I remember striving to hear Summa Cum Laude after my name. I got it, but at what expense? I skipped parties, preferring to study. Would my experience have been more memorable if I had been more sociable?
As much as I was friendly and outgoing in college, I did not keep in touch with friends. Granted a lot was because they were not people I had grown up with and I broke up with the "college boyfriend" soon after. I guess I just left feeling a little disjointed. Like I did not fit in with anyone. Oh, brother. Not that feeling.
The last few years have been pretty tough. I remember never wanting to leave St Mary's yet, after a couple years, I feel like I don't really belong. Am I just remembering all the good things? The sunsets, the water, traditions, having class outside, fun professors...Was it not as fantastic as I remember? Now that I have been gone from NC for a few years, I find myself doing everything in my power to return. If I don't, will I someday find that I don't fit in there either? Or, is that where I am destined to be?
Maybe I just need a drink.
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