My good friend MF was admitted into the hospital last night after suffering from a blood clot and bleeding in his brain. I am devastated. Today is a terrible day, but news of his recovery are making things a bit better. Lots of love and thoughts are being sent his way.
The guys from the new thrift store just swung by and picked up most of our furniture (my couches, the big TV, some side tables, the kitchen table, and a bunch more). The house is slowly emptying out, reverting back to that barren, dirty shell that it was when we moved in. Last time the house looked like this I was raging, I hated the filthiness of the floors (back then it was dusty, spotted carpeting) and the marked up walls. This time, as I get ready to vacuum and mop, I’m filled with a sadness. Sure, this house wasn’t the greatest locale and it wasn’t always comforting, but it still hosted me for four seasons. I cried here, I laughed here, I fought here, I made peace with myself here and now it’s being handed off to another set of girls to have their own share of memories within it.
It’s times like this that I’m reminded of the transience of this place. Pierce said it to me four years ago, “everything here is transient”–and at that time I refused to believe it. But now, as I get ready to move back home (and in a couple months, to Chicago), I’m reminded that this place is largely a place of passing. Sure, some people decide to make it their forever home, but Athens is for the most-part a place of transition. What a disconcerting thought: this little town bustling with college kids who spend four years building something meaningful within it are just going to move on. It’s sort of like breaking up, but I think there’s something even more private and intimate about the feelings you associate with a place you call ‘home’–that place of comforts and securities that you knew, you created, and you understood fully (it’s never that way in relationships with other human beings).
And now we move away from dear, old Athens. She was our friend, my little bungalow is a speck upon her face. And that little speck is now a very empty, very transient home. But it was one of the most meaningful homes I’ve ever lived in.
In four days I leave Athens, Ohio forever.
Ever since the boys drove in from D.C. we’ve been trying to fill up our time with as many hangouts as we possible can. From fires at the girls house to night swims, I am trying to surround myself with my friends as much as possible. Unfortunately, with graduation looming on the horizon, all these hangouts are marked with an anxiousness and unease. For as much fun as we are having now, everything is coming to an end and I can feel this looming in the background of all that we do. I feel like I need to put everything on hold because these friends that I’ve made over the past four years are far more important than packing boxes or looking for apartments in Chicago or picking up my cap ‘n gown. I can’t imagine caring about anything more than these amazing people that have filled my life with so many great memories, so much laughter, and so much happiness.
Sometimes I wish that I would just wake up in my bed in Shively again and have another four years of spring and camping and swimming hole-ing and cook-outs and bonfires. It feels like it was just yesterday that I was rolling out of bed and draggin myself down to South Green to watch Andrew W.K. at lobsterfest. Has it really been almost two and a half years since we used to eat lunch at Bromley, ride the CAT bus out to the Ridges, and spend our afternoons running around the hay bails? What about those nights spent at Annie’s old apartment on Mill, when Bronson and I rolled a tire down the staircase and it rolled all the way across the street to the Stewart Church lot and almost caused a car accident? Or when the cops came to Milliron and we had to hide with the lights off to keep out of trouble? I wish I could wake up and relive it all again, I may have done some things different but I wouldn’t give up any of those experiences for anything in the world.
I love these people, and though I know I’m going to go on to meet new awesome people in Chicago, it won’t be the same as the friends that I lived with day-in and day-out in Athens, Ohio. For all the friends that I make in the future, nothing will compare to this family that I have in Athens.