I can't wait to be back on that beautiful campus. I can't wait to see my dear friends. I can NOT wait to circle up with my Side on Saturday night in the hallowed Palmer Hall and experience the electricity in the air and the power of the Purple Side.
missing "mildly retarded"
|John and his "hand dipped cones" |
from Dairy Queen.
I don't know what has prompted his being on my mind so much lately-- perhaps it's because I have settled down and finally have time to craft again, or maybe it's just that I am finally able to look back and remember without being overwhelmed by the memories of his last few months.
There are moments when I wish we could just sit down over dinner and catch up. I wish he could see the house (and make fun of my decorating choices) and meet the Man (and probably make fun of us) and be around to see how many of his students and friends from his time at Montevallo have flourished and grown to find success, who have direction, who have finally found their passion and and making their dreams happen.
He used to joke that most of his students were "mildly retarded" and would never amount to much-- but I think everyone who knew John, and who was affectionately called "mildly retarded", knew that he was proud of them. As I return to Campus this weekend, I'll be thinking of him-- while cheering for the Purples in Palmer watching the cheerleaders in uniforms he helped us design, while watching the Gold Show and hearing his biting critique just like our last College Night together, while drinking a glass of sweet tea with the one and only Miss Pam, and while being surrounded by the Montevallo family that love and miss him to this day.
love and all things considered
When I left my Montevallo home after graduation, I moved back to Auburn to be with my family. I initially felt coming home was a sign of failure, like I hadn't actually moved on, like the last four years had been erased and I was back in high school. I had been accepted to attend graduate school at the University of Alabama, but had a complete change of heart. I left the program, the assistantship, the lease, everything to come home.
Thankfully, I did move back. It enabled me to help my Dad recover from some of his more serious health issues, be around for my Sweet Grandmother as she lived the last months of her life, help my Dear Mother recover from surgery and adjust to her life as caregiver for Sassy Grandma, and led me to where I am today- happy, settled, and loved.
Still, moving home was difficult. My life changed drastically. Though I was always working while in school (I had a job or three at any given moment), I still feel like I was able to live "the college life." Once I moved to Auburn, I made do. I got a job, I got an apartment. I worked. I worked to pay bills. I worked to keep busy. I worked to figure out who I was, after leaving my college self behind. I'm sure we've all been through a time like this-- where you're just living, going through the motions.
I don't mean to imply that I wasn't happy, I was. After the first few years, I was finally happy with the person I was becoming, and happy being alone. Happy being by myself, doing my own thing-- cheesy chick flicks from Movie Gallery on a Friday night, lunches at Country's barbecue with the Dad and his cronies, and my weekends spent strolling through thrift stores looking for the next find. I pretty much kept to myself.
And then I lost a bet.
|The card I made for the Man on our first Valentine's Day.|
Can you tell we're fans of South Park?