What this summer looks like

June. It looks like days of homework and college research and scholarship searches. Assigned novels and chosen reading and reading reflections and physics problem sets. Notes in Evernote and charts in Word, lists of colleges. A festival of poetry, words and music in the air, fries with too much oil, new acquaintances. Learning the Running Man from Youtube. Learning computer science on edX. Programming a cat to run in circles, programming a monkey to move back and forth. Dancing and sweating to music. Taking walks in the neighborhood. Sometimes, anywhere, noticing things that catch my eye, and my imagination, and writing them down. Days in a temporary computer lab set up for two weeks, learning Python and data processing. Relaxation, followed by stress, coupled with excitement. Awkwardness, frustration, impatience. And fear that I’ve taken on something too ambitious, fear that I won’t be able to make the reading and writing and sewing that I have wanted to do a reality. Thinking about what I have done so far this month, how I failed my goal checkpoints but made small successes. (How it’s okay, because it has to be okay, and because this is continuous improvement, a continuous journey. This is life.) Thinking about what the rest of this summer will be like, seeing what it will look like in my mind.

July. It looks like writing and reading and sewing. It looks like visiting museums, visiting parks, visiting colleges, visiting cities, visiting clothing stores and fabric stores and thrift stores. Building the wardrobe I have been planning. Reading and writing and music and dancing and poetry. Writing, actually writing, in the flow writing, hours and hours of writing, writing and revision. It looks like sewing, crafts, paint, scissors, glue, fabric. Having the leisure of staying in bed as long as I want, but getting up at 7 because I’m awake. Awake and excited. Walking and breathing and living the fresh morning air.

August. It looked long but when it became real, it looked far too short. It looks like life, it looks like a blob of time in the progression from the past to the future. It looks like, I hope, peace, flow, breathe, now, progress, growth. And it will look like things that I don’t imagine now, because things look different up close than far away, because I might see differently then, because things may shift in the movement from future to now. School and the rush of senior year and whatever’s beyond will come at me, possibly still as a surprise, and whatever I gain from the summer may or may not disappear with it all. That is possible. But I hope, beyond my fears that this summer will be unremarkable or worse and my thoughts that it is ridiculous to expect anything significant out of this already decreasing time of a summer, that I will have squeezed all the reading, writing, sewing, and living I can out of these days, and will keep something worthwhile that will stick with me through the school days and beyond.

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