May 23, 2016

Losing My Keys

I graduated last week. I went through all the pomp and circumstance, wearing heavy polyester robes and a weird hat. It was actually pretty fun minus the itchy clothing.

After graduation I stopped by my office to pack up. Everything fit into a single cardboard box. I don't know if it's the minimalist in me or the fact that I've only been on campus once a week since Zianne was born {and not at all this year, obviously}, but I did not keep much in my work space. A few pictures of my family, a few paintings from friends, a lamp, some pens, and some plastic utensils for eating lunch. That's pretty much it. I always knew that whatever I brought in, I'd someday have to carry out in 100 degree heat.

Thankfully, it was only 90 degrees the day I moved out. But I was wearing high heels, so you win some, you lose some. I locked my office door for the last time and made my way up to the offices on the 6th floor. I handed an administrator my keys, made my way down the elevator, and walked out of my building, possibly forever. I felt a touch of nostalgia as I left. As I was cleaning out my desk, I had come across some student papers from my very first semester teaching at ASU back in 2010. I remember that first group of students fondly and often wonder what they are doing now. 

But then I noticed how light my keychain felt in my hand. It might seem silly, but it was a significant difference. I had dropped off two decently large metal keys and the physical weight missing was noticeable. It was like my keychain could sense the freedom I felt upon graduating. No more dissertation. No more exams. No more night classes. No more juggling teaching at two different institutions at same time.

I know I'll add more keys to my keychain next year, probably literally and figuratively. I'll have a new, bigger office, and I'll have to fill the shelves with books and frames. I know I will take on new responsibilities and, before I know it, my calendar will be full.

But not yet. For the first time in six years, I don't have to spend my summer reading or writing or grading. I'm going to spend my days reading The Jesus Storybook Bible to my girls, baking cookies, going to the splash pad, and blogging for fun. I know the fall will be full and busy, but right now I've got a bounce in my step because my keychain is light.

1 comment:

  1. Beth @ The Goad Abode5/23/16, 6:41 AM

    I love that! I was so sad to hand in my keys when I left my job of nearly 8 years in March. I am all for lighter keychains that mean more time with our kiddos!

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