Closing the distance

Belvidere North graduate poses with his college mascot.

Belvidere North graduate poses with his college mascot.

Haley McCoy, Editorials Editor

     Last year, two hundred of our closest friends surrounded us in the halls of Belvidere North. However, fast forward twelve months and they’ve scattered around the country, some scarcely finding the time to return back to the one horse town they spent their school years in. So instead of waiting for them to remember their younger friends back home, those of us with friends who’ve left the area have found our way to college towns this fall, to visit the very friends that left us behind.

     “Thankfully my friend only went to Rock Valley, so she’s not too far away,” said Payton Lindsay (‘17).

     As freshmen, it wasn’t terribly difficult when the seniors of the year before took off into the real world. We hardly knew them, so it didn’t impact us at all. But as we got older, we befriended the older students and watched them grow up and take off, waiting for our chance to follow. Many of us have just one year left until we, too, take our leave, but for now, we’re left pining after the freedom and new opportunities our friends now have.

     Be that as it is, it’s bittersweet to visit friends or family away at college. Brief glimpses at their new lives make us envious of what they have and sad they’ve moved on, even if it was what was best for their futures. That’s perfectly fine, but that selfish desire that every one of us has tells us that they should stay home where we are. Leaving them again is almost harder, especially after we’ve had a small taste of the new life that awaits us next fall or in the coming years.

     “My sister is away at college in Wisconsin,” said Jake Martocci (‘17). “It’s weird now that she’s gone but I can’t wait to leave, too.”

     While it’s difficult to leave our college friends once again, it’s also exciting. Next year, or the year after or, heaven forbid, the year after that, we will be following them on our way out of town. There’s a whole new world out there waiting once college arrives, and whether we stay home or venture out to the real world, it’s thrilling to see everything that the rest of the world has to offer.

     Visiting friends at college in a new city or even a new state is a whirlwind of emotions. It leads to the one solitary and terrifying conclusion we must all accept: pretty soon, that’s going to be us.