As marked by all my friends in college taking exams, my gap year is already half over. Half over and I haven't even gotten to the good stuff yet, but I already appreciate it so much.
Because I haven't exactly kept track on here, I'll recap the major-ish things I've done so far:
- worked at Misty Valley Farms' produce stand
- visited a friend (also taking a gap year!) and his awesome family in Seattle for almost 2 weeks
- ran a half marathon
- volunteered at Dumbarton Middle School with their ESOL Program (ongoing)
I was so afraid of feeling "stuck" at home, but it hasn't ended up feeling that way for the most part. No one is forcing me to stay here, and there's freedom in that. Working, training for my half, volunteering at Dumbarton, and visiting friends in D.C., New Haven, and Seattle, have all helped, too. And they're all things that I've chosen to do.
School hasn't been my only life here anymore. When my friends come home, they're walking into a memory. Sometimes they'll say, Baltimore hasn't changed at all. But they feel like guests here now because college is their home, too. It's not so for me. For them, it feels weird to be home. But for me, it feels weird to have them home. For me, home is a living, breathing thing. My memories of autumn and winter in Baltimore are no longer only tangled with 8 a.m. to 3:20 p.m. school days, and my present is still in the same city, in the same house. When I do go to college next fall, I’ll have something completely different to return to.
Songs I've been listening to: Lovely Day by alt-J, Eventually by Tame Impala