At the end of freshman year, I remember feeling sad to leave. I was sad to leave a bunch of dear girls on a hall in MEP. But I was not too sad. We could write and call, and besides, we’d all be back for three more glorious years. So I went home for a stretching summer in Missouri.

At the end of sophomore year, I was drained and hurt. There would be people to miss over the summer, but I wanted nothing more than home. So all summer, I had home: its monotony, humidity, and comfort.

This year, I did not know the end was coming. In the last stretch of class after my birthday I had an unprecedented amount of stress land on my head and try to smother me like some heavy, hellish duvet, and by the time I crawled out from under that, it was study day, and I could count my time left on campus in the showers I had still to take.

I walked back to my room from turning in a last term paper and I saw they had the big roll-away dumpsters out for the end of the year and a heaviness hit my chest which has not left since.

This morning my classical ed class had a raucous, obnoxious breakfast together in Hicks and went merrily on our way to our nine o’clock final. As I took my last Edwards’ test my chest began to feel more and more full. I have never been more reluctant to leave an exam.

At length I did, and my feet dragged. And since then, I’ve been running into the rest of my classmates all day like we’re bunch of magnets who can’t stay apart. (Well, actually, I called Megan at one point and said “Where are you? I want to see you.” I’ll take responsibility for that one.) We talk about nothing and say “Well, isn’t this weird? I guess some of us will still be here after all this…” And then the weight swells a bit more.

This afternoon, I took my SSFT study guide to the chapel and sat while Michael played the organ. After a while, he asked if he could play loud and I said I didn’t mind. After another while, he asked what my favorite hymn was and I said how about “Come Thou Fount.” The weight in my chest expanded down to my toes as I sat with my knees to my chin on the hard pew. The fans clicked high above me and “songs of loudest praise” wrapped round me.

It’s just growing pains, I think. My God is “tuning my heart.” There’s no tears or melodrama, just an ungainly hurt that stings of eternity.

For now, I go to read for Lit Crit and clean the room for a favorite sister who’s coming. His goodness will continue to bind me even when I do not look for it.

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