Appreciating Old Adventures and Anticipating New Ones

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by Brianna Albers |

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I’ve been struggling to get back into the swing of things now that my friends are gone. And not just with schoolwork, either. Basically, anything that isn’t Dungeons & Dragons, “National Treasure,” or self-insert role-play is having a hard time keeping my attention for more than an hour. Email? What’s that? I’ve never responded to an email in all of my 22 years.

It certainly doesn’t help matters that a few hours after my dad and I dropped my best friend off at the airport, we drove to Iowa for yet another week-long trip, during which my laptop succumbed to the Windows update that’s been offing computers left and right. One minute it was working fine and I was perfectly content with my lukewarm SpaghettiOs and my half-written essay on grief work, and the next I was having an anxiety attack because my computer wasn’t functioning, and what am I supposed to do all next week when I’m in Indiana for my master’s program? Thankfully, I have kind and wonderful grandparents who were willing to drive an hour one way to pick me up something functional.

Long story short, I am now broke — but at least I have a shiny new Pixelbook to show for it. I’m a Windows girl at heart, largely because it has the best onscreen keyboard I’ve found, but so far I’m enjoying my new laptop. The screen is tiny compared to my deceased, 17-inch giant, and the onscreen keyboard, which functions like a phone keyboard, has probably taken a few years off my life at this point (there have been a ridiculous amount of typos). But I’ll adjust. I always do.

It feels like I haven’t really gotten a chance to catch my breath yet. And I won’t, really, until next weekend, once my program intensive is over. But having all my favorite people in the same room was wild and magical and absolutely, without a doubt, worth it. A dream come true, and I don’t say that lightly. To be so completely at ease, and to have my best friend in the same building as me, let alone the same country and time zone, was …

How do you describe something like that? I honestly don’t think you can.

A few nights ago, one of my friends sent me a screenshot she took of an ancient and embarrassing blog post of mine, talking about how all I wanted to do was live and love.

So many things have changed since then, mostly for the better, but that — that hasn’t changed one bit. Thinking back on the past few weeks has only made me appreciate the memories we made together, the laughter and the tears, and the incriminating Google doc that has everyone’s quotes from when they were tipsy.

I have lived and loved a lot. And I will continue to live and love a lot. We miss each other terribly, and I’m definitely going through a mini, loneliness-induced depressive episode. But life goes on, with the promise of new adventures (and new computers). Mine just so happens to be my first intensive of my graduate career.

(Courtesy of Brianna Alber)


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