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5:37 p.m.

Lana feelsThe current mood of xengirl at www.imood.com

I graduate 21 days from yesterday. 21 days is... A very long time. If you're counting them by homework assignments and final papers and class periods. 21 days is... A very short time. If you're counting them by hugs and jokes and construction and rehearsals and riding to and from Glenwood with Cesca on the bus. Or if you're comparing them to 3 years of relative happiness, or to 12 years of school, or to 17 years of life. Or even to the five months that seemed like not-so-long back in January when I realized that was all I had left here. In 21 days I'm done with dorm checks and study halls and a certain type of accountability, forever. Assuming I don't end up in a mental institution. In 21 days I can stay out past 11 on a Friday night without thinking about it, for the rest of my life. Can check the 'completed high school' box on job applications. Can say 'I survived high school' without a qualifier. Can hug my friends and cry my eyes out and mourn the passing of childhood and celebrate the advent of adulthood and at some point realize that this river is flowing and while my feet are in it I'd better be aware because it will never come back. I will never again be poised on the brink of adulthood in quite the same way, though I imagine college will come with many moments where I realize that this is what childhood's passing feels like. It's been going for a long time - my father has been known to say that I was never a child, that I went straight from being a toddler to being a teenager with no childhood in the middle - but now is a time for realizing it. Realizing the end, the beginning of new things, the futility of trying to hold on to something so long on the ebb. Realizing the value of loving the life I'm living now because in 21 days, there is an astonishing change. 21 days from yesterday, so really, only 20.

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