A Mad Rush

By Jackson Cooper, Staff Writer

Published in print Apr. 22, 2015

One of my favorite words to describe something is, “Heady.”

It’s a favorite because it’s basically saying that someone is so in their head, with good ideas swirling about up there, that they forget that they have a body, which needs to enact said ideas.

This is not time wasted, mostly just time spent on planning the plan. Then, one day you wake up and it’s May 6— graduation— and you’re done with four years.

Lately, I’ve wondered about friends who are all graduating: if they are all heady or if they are taking advantage of this precious time left before they head out to the big world.

A lot of seniors I know have the same look that the main character at the end of “Dazed and Confused” has as he stares out the window of his car at the sunset— accepting of the future, unsure, but hopeful.

I see a lot of my friends now, juniors and sophomores, scared of the one or two year marker and uttering the phrase, “Jesus Christ, I’m going to be a senior soon.”

I graduate in December and, yes, I’m nervous, but I’m excited. As a result, they become heady.

We get to be heady when we’re unsure of things.

Few of us know ourselves well enough to decide something and stick to it.

And that’s just it: we’re all in the same boat so, hey, it’s okay to have a small nervous breakdown at 2:00 a.m. at night.

Or to call up your ex and say you miss them. Or to not study.

We get wrapped up in our heads way too often.

That doesn’t mean we should shut people out; we should embrace them and hold them tight as that sun sets on this chapter of our lives.

I’m getting too sentimental.

Once there was a woman I met when I worked in Massachusetts that told me she only cared about herself when she was my age.

“I only worked because I was scared—I never had a social life or anything.”

Then one day, as she said, she woke up and she was 54.

Her point was to get out of your own head and into the world.

Time is precious, yes, but everyone has time in the day to talk to friends or call their mom.

It’s a mad rush, finishing up life and hurrying to the next part, but we don’t want it to end.

The school work, yes, the memories, no.

I don’t look forward to the feeling of graduation.

I felt it when my best friends graduated (one my freshman year, the other the year after) and moved to New York.

They were still there; I just never thought the end would happen.

Suddenly, it felt like “Dazed and Confused.” I remember smiling and taking a walk around the then-empty campus.

Boy, it’s a beautiful campus, isn’t it? It will be missed.

Life goes on. So do you and I. The world still spins.

And at the end of the day, we get out of our heads to be with one another.

Isn’t that just grand?

Categories: Features, Jackson Cooper

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