I’ll sometimes be talking to people I know and casually say, “I hate summer.” They’ll laugh, but then I’ll get serious and reiterate, “No, really, I hate summer.” And I do, pretty wholeheartedly.
I hate the heat; I get red-faced, out of breath and generally uncomfortable, and I’m honestly more of a fan of rain. I hate the time leading up to summer, with the crazy pressure of finding something productive to do for all those months among every other thing that needs to get done. I also hate change, which is overabundant for me whenever the summer months come around. Seniors are graduating, another school year is finishing up and I find myself in the throes of nostalgia. It’s terrible.
I’ve been trying to learn, however, that the change summer brings with it doesn’t always have to be seen as a negative thing. The seniors that have become your friends, and who you’ll miss dearly, are indeed moving on and away from you, but you have so many memories with them to hang on to. We’re criticized for it by older generations, but we as millenials and members of Gen Z document the time with our friends more than any others. We have pictures and videos and texts to remember each other by, to prove that our time together was meaningful.
If you’re like me and you attach sentimentality to literally everything, then the smallest mementos will hold the fondest memories for you to look back on. These memories can be bittersweet, but also so enjoyable to reminisce about, and they can be just as fun to relive as they are to experience in the first place.
The other aspect of change that I’ve been trying to unlearn is the negativity of newness. Change has always been equated to a bad thing in my mind because the result of that change, of what’s new, can’t possibly measure up to the familiarity of what I had in the past. However, what I’ve always failed to consider is the idea that change can bring about a new reality that’s just as positive, joy-filled and meaningful as that past time that’s just been let go of. The present can mean a lot, but so can the future, even without those same familiar faces and the exact same environment.
Summer can be filled with possibility; it can be changed and contain better memories than the summers that came before it. That transition period in between the years does carry sadness and the ending of an era, but a new and potentially better one can be right around the bend.
I’m still not a huge summer person. I would take a thunderstorm over a heatwave any day, and the time I spend away from campus and all my friends who live states away isn’t the easiest problem to solve. But I’m willing to give this summer a chance, and even though things are coming to an end, a new beginning is awfully exciting to consider.