Things I Will Miss: Returning
“Things I Will Miss” is a series that I will be writing in which I reflect on the things that I will miss the most once I graduate from this place. Feel free to shed a tear or two or at least loan me a kleenex.
I love returning to Middlebury, the electric remembering of every curve of Route 7, the cocoon and blossom of a butterfly or two in my stomach on that first turn into town, the ways things changed and the ways they didn’t. In my time at Middlebury, I’ve returned fifteen times and it doesn’t seem to matter if it was after a weekend jaunt to Montreal or after eight months spent abroad, coming back to Middlebury is like diving headfirst into a warm embrace—it just feels right.
This go around, I’m returning after a summer spent teaching Creative Writing and Acapella to high school students in New Haven, CT. Though I slept for the majority of my train ride from New Haven, at about the four-hour mark into my seven-hour journey, I stumbled upon a scary realization: this would be my final return to Middlebury as a student beginning a new year. Sure, I would return and will return to campus several times over the course of my life, but this return, this homecoming, felt different and important.
Now, I return as someone who knows things and not all big, significant things, but little things about life and what it means to be a student at Midd. I return as someone who will write a thesis and apply to teaching fellowships and vote for Obama and know to avoid the Bunker on Friday nights. I return as someone who has returned ecstatically and grudgingly and a mixture of both, who still returns wide-eyed.
As the title of this series suggests, this returning is something that I will miss very, very much. As we all begin to return to campus (for res life training, sports teams, student government training or just for school) I urge you all to appreciate and cherish how it feels to come back to this place, either for your first time or your last.