I ’m a crybaby. My housemates Kci and Simone can attest to this and they’ll tell you it’s because of my Cancer moon. If there were a blacklight that could detect tears, you would probably see more marks from my tears than from the rabbit urine. Hopefully. If not, I preemptively apologize to the future tenants of my previous rooms.
My rabbit, Mel, and I have lived in many places around campus. If we haven’t lived there, then we have definitely visited, if only to wreak a little havoc. Mel’s been my roommate for a majority of my time at Vassar. We’ve become such good roommates that sometimes I forget that he lives beneath me and scream bloody murder when he touches my leg. On nights when it was just me or a housemate in our SoCo, Mel’s midnight snacking (on the closet door) became a warning for us to lock our doors and check our windows. When his daily quota for physical affection has not been met, he becomes the biggest pest and chews through whatever wires are available.
My life at Vassar coexists with this rabbit’s life. When I lived in Strong, he toured the house with Sarah and had an improv scene in our house team video. While doing work outside with Abi on the picnic bench, I lost him for an hour before finding him exactly where he always was. Mel tried to claim every space as his, leaving poop pellets behind to preserve his presence.
Despite Mel’s willful intentions of staying at Vassar, I’m excited to lean into the years beyond college. I look forward to when my memory becomes a name in the yearbook and the first years I met this last summer are able to look back and see how much they’ve grown. Although I still remain jobless and uncertain, I continue to scour the internet for pet friendly housing and urge my friends to buy the houses I find on Zillow. I’m planning our next trip to the city, envisioning our reunions and imagining how our lives will be in the future.
As a new summer approaches, my body remembers the heat of the last two I spent on campus. Summers were beautiful—the campus wide and empty of all but the sounds of nature. The days are slow and indistinguishable, much like they have been for these past few weeks. No academia, no thoughts, just long and hazy restful days.
I treasure the moments where I’ve been able to slow down and take life step by step. As each year passed, it became easier and easier to be swallowed by responsibilities. Every year offered new opportunities to be a part of a different team, to start a different project. But now, the assignments from past semesters are foggy; rereading old essays is akin to crossing paths with a stranger. I remember very little about the work I’ve done, but I can walk you through the times spent with the people I’ve grown to love, introduce you to the homes we’ve built.
Throughout these last four years, my family has expanded. It no longer feels so lonely to be half the world away from my relatives; I have more loved ones from Vassar than I could have ever hoped for. I wish I could share with you the many nights we spent crammed into a room, telling stories and laying on top of one another until our eyes could barely open. I wish you were there for the meals we made in our grungy kitchens, especially the lavish desserts and cheese platters that I’ve documented poorly. I want to drag you into the most ridiculous scenarios we’ve been in, where the only evidence of it having happened is our hysterical cackling passing through Main’s paper thin walls.
I’ve learned so many ways to connect, to love, to forgive, to heal during my time here. If anyone had told me that my diploma was the second most important thing I’d leave Vassar with my first year, I wouldn’t have believed them.
Honestly though, I was a clown my first year. My biggest pair of clown shoes was my 10 year life plan. It took these last few years to grow out of them. Change is slow. Very slow.
I’m so incredibly grateful for everyone who’s been a part of my time at Vassar. You have all brought me joy and taught me courage and confidence, became my mentors and offered me countless wisdom and support. Thank you for traveling down this path with me. I love you, see you soon~