Wednesday, November 28, 2007

It. Is. Finished.

So I'm driving home from APU tonight, cruising along Huntington, singing at the top of my lungs (I do that when I'm alone) and as the song (from the Martin Guerre soundtrack) reaches it's crescendo it hits me: I have my Bachelors Degree. I start to cry.

I know, I know. This may sound very strange considering that is what I've been working my butt off these past two years to complete. But in some weird way, it was as if I had only just realized that all the hard work was for that. A degree. I suddenly felt as if I was part of a club. For so long it's been something I've worked toward, put off, and griped about. And now it's over. I ask in all seriousness: what will I do with all the extra time?

Tonight was my very last night of class at APU. My very last class toward my BS. My very last class until I move and start a graduate program. My very last class until August 2008.

I realize I'm repeating myself, just in different ways, but you guys--this is all kind of crazy to think about and it keeps hitting me. Although I have another academic goal in mind that will take 5 solid years to complete, it feels as though getting this BS has been just as hard and time consuming.

Tonight was a fun night. Our cohort gathered for a last meal. We honored and encouraged each other. We visited another cohort who was just starting their 15-months tonight. We tried to assuage their fears. We bought sweatshirts at the student store. I had to give a speech upon receiving the "Outstanding Student Award" as voted by the faculty, staff & my fellow students. I was honored, truly. We laughed. We cried. Afterward some of us even stood outside for another half hour just talking.

We started with 30 and ended with 20. We survived. We succeeded. We gained weight.
Christmas 2006..............................................................Last day of class, November 27, 2007

For those of you who always wanted to put faces to the names I mentioned in my school stories, here are a few...
Sarah, the girl who still has textbooks in shrink wrap. Rhonda, my partner in crime. Mary, the encourager.
Diane, the helper to all.... Moy & James, the troublemakers.... Julia, my lead professor and mentor.
It is good to be finished. No wait. Let me rephrase. It is GREAT to be finished. GO COUGARS!


TheWinnFamily said...

WAY.TO.GO. I'm really proud of you Kel, you saw the goal and you went after it! And you every bit deserved that award...really, who else could they choose? :) xoxo

Liz said...

Now it's time to move to Chicago and start on that next degree, right? :) Kidding. Sort of. Maybe. Not really. :)
You rock!
P.S. I kind of miss that student store. And, now we have matching license plate frames!

DeniseMarie said...

Kells, I'm tearing up just reading this. Truly, I am beyond proud.

Abby... the Oregonian said...

kelly, i cried reading all this. i am so stinking proud of you... as a fellow non baer i know exactly what you mean... so fun to say, yeah, i graduated from azusa. and shut up liz, she's moving to portland, even if i have to drag her up my self. love you kel

Sarah S said...

congrat's friend... enjoy your year of freedom... ps. have you asked your dad for a raise yet? ;)

Liz said...

Wow, I'm feeling a little hostility here. :)
Kelly, how does it feel to have people fighting over you?

Kellyry said...

It feels GREAT! Keep going.

Jeremy said...

Wow! What an honor!


scstar2000 said...

yeah! welcome to the club.

with all the free time you can do nothing...sit in front of the fun books...dream about your new home for the next 5 with friends...enjoy everything LA has to offer before you leave. YEAH for you!!

Jan said...

Til lykke, Kelly! Godt gået :)

b said...

SOOOO proud of you too, Kell. Uber cool.

One question: why are most of your school friends wearing red?

Phoebe said...

Wow! Now you can move up here. (Is my continual plug for Portland getting old yet?)
Congrats. Congrats. I can't believe the day is here.