There are few things in life as unique as the college experience. I, myself, feel like I missed out a bit, having only lived on campus for one semester. But last week I got to relive some of my glory days with a visit to Grace Bible College in Grand Rapids, MI. Sleeping in a college dorm, eating in the cafeteria… Amazing. Here’s a sneak-past-peek at my couple of days there.
The stage is set, I’m sitting at the breakfast table with one of my roommates and a couple other girls I haven’t met yet…
ROOMMATE: This is Marijke.
GIRL I HAVEN’T MET YET: Are you thinking of coming here next year?
Ummmm… Hello?!? HIGHLIGHT OF MY WEEK! How grand to be considered young enough for college membership! Now, I realize fully that perception is primarily context and presentation. Any other time or location, and I may never pass for 18-20. But that morning? I was a spring chicken. How delightful.
I am not usually the kind of person who cares about aging. In fact, I LOVE birthdays. But I have often remembered my younger years with longing, wishing I could go back and do them over again. Perhaps take more chances? Try bigger?
I guess I don’t really want to be 16 or 19 or 21 again; those years had enough trouble of their own. But I understand now a little bit of the melancholy that accompanies aging, finally realizing what it means to never get those years back, wondering if you’ve missed windows of opportunity, questioning choices made and decisions done and gone.
For what it’s worth, it makes me really want to live the rest of my years ‘eyes wide open.’ No regrets, you know what I mean? The thing is, I’m not always sure what that looks like. ‘Big and Brave’ certainly sounds exciting, but ‘Small and Rooted’ has its charm as well. And I think, to some extent, we will never know for sure that we’ve made the right choices. But maybe recognizing the risk inherent in each is half of the equation.