Tuesday, September 16, 2008

I just don't know, yet.

My best friend turned seventeen today. I made her seventeen cupcakes and gave her a ticket to a concert we will both attend next weekend. I drove her to school with Stevie Wonder's "Happy Birthday" blaring from the speakers. We even took silly pictures at stop lights. Before she got out of the car she thanked me and said, "I thought today would be like any other day, but thanks to you I know it won't." Moments like this have been stirring a lot of emotion lately. If it were possible to have a teenage midlife crisis, that's what I'd call this. I feel trapped. Everything seems final and scary. This might be the last birthday I celebrate with her for sometime. By this time next year she'll be off to college and who knows what I'll be doing. Thinking about plans for the future leaves me overwhelmed and anxious. I don't know that I'm ready for any of this. I know I need to stop watching the days drift by and take charge, that my future is only as bright as I make it. I'm turning seventeen on Friday. I'll celebrate, but I fear that it will be tainted by what I'm feeling. The future should not seem like a burden. I need to flip my thinking, make the most of what I have. I just wish it didn't seem as though any choice I make today or in the near future will shape my entire life. I just want to feel that not knowing right now is an okay thing.
I don't know where I'm going with this. I just needed to put it out there.

I sincerely apologize for the melodramatic teenage me, me, me-ness of this post.


Cara said...

The future can be very scary. I remember having that feeling my last year of high school. As well as my last sememster of college and even during my transition from college to work.
My best, and only, advise is to keep the friends you can't live without. Make the effort to stay in touch.
And don't be afraid of the new people in your life. The can be a surprise blessing in so many ways.
And happy early birthday.

Scott K. Johnson said...

I too felt a bit like that when I graduated high school.

I think it is scary, but taking from what little I know of you through your blog, you will lead a fantastically fun and satisfying life.

Change is good!

Colleen said...

You made cupcakes, you drove her to school while singing and took photos. You are a GREAT friend! I think you'll find that you keep good friends.
And nah, you're not melodramatic, you're a teenager. We like you just the way you are.

Ashley said...

that's a wonderful birthday, and you're good to be such a great friend. it meant something to her, i bet she'll keep in touch.

when i graduated i felt like that too, like everything was my "last." last year, last english class, last choir concert, last cast party. it's the ending of an era, you know.

the good news is, there are more eras, and they have a lot to offer.

and it's okay to be a teenager sometimes, especially if that's what you are. :)

kkonmymind said...

wow - great post! I never wrote about it, but that is exactly how I felt when I graduated high school. You are definitely not alone!

The choices you make will shape your life, and not necessarily in the scary ways you are thinking. I am 34 now, and when I look back on the choices I made, I think, wow - there were some pretty serendipitous choices I made seemingly haphazardly at the time, full of tension, that many years later brought me to a wonderful place.

I know that probably sounds all weird, but it's true for me. I'll keep you in my thoughts. And happy birthday, a little early!

Jillian said...

Thanks everyone! It's good to know that this happens to more than just a few people. So many of my friends are so excited, and I'm just freaking out. It isn't really about loosing those friends or moving away from them. It's more about what these moments seem to signify, which brings about a total fear of not knowing what's next.