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Four Years at the Mount

Senior Year

Dreams come true

Samantha Strub
Class of 2013

(5/2013) This is it. My final weeks at the Mount. I cannot believe Commencement is literally right around the corner. As Iím going about my classes, work, activities and adventures with my friends, I cannot help but think that this will be last time doing this at my University. Iím starting to feel sentimental about my beloved school that has been my home for the past four years of my life.

My dream of going to college has come true. In just a few weeks I will be walking across that stage, praying that I will not fall in my heels, shaking Dr. Powellís hand and accepting my diploma. Is this for real? I cannot believe that time is here already. My parents always told me that my college years would fly by, but I was always skeptical. When I was a sophomore I couldnít wait for college to be over, but my mom had very wise words for me. I remember that conversation like it was yesterdayÖ

It was on a hot summer day and my mom and I were lying out on our deck. It was a Saturday so neither of us had to work. I took the opportunity of a Saturday off in order to work on my tan. This procedure was always lying out on the deck with a book and headphones by the pool. When the heat became unbearable I would take a dip, flip sides and repeat. My mom came out and joined me. We kept to ourselves at first because, as a true bookworm, I had to finish just one more chapter, which turned into four. The heat became unbearable and Mom and I both went for a dip. Then we started talking about anything and everything, as many mothers and daughters do. We floated on noodles and talked about everything from the household renovations to my college friends.

During this conversation, I ended up complaining to my mom about drama that was happening and some of my classes that I was frustrated with. I told her that I was sick of college and I just wanted to be done and working. I wanted to be teaching already. I was done with college and the rules that went along with living at home again. I wanted to be moved out and a long way away. When I was done complaining, my mother told me not to worry so much about what the future would bring and instead learn to enjoy the moment. She told me to relax; adult life will not go anywhere. She said it will still be there when I am done with my degree; maybe by then, even though I will be ready, I will not be as excited. She told me that my next two years would be over in the blink of an eye. It will go by a lot faster than I think. My job is to work hard and have fun.

My mom told me that the responsiblities and drama that I was stressing about are a part of life. They will always be there and in fact multiply. If I think my responsibilities are challenging now, just wait until I am responsible for all of the students that I teach or coach. I will be responsible for teaching my students how to read, comprehend and analyze literature. I will bring them into the captivating world while guiding them on all aspects of their life without even knowing it. That, she said, is responsibility. If the responsibility of schoolwork, work and activities is overwhelming me now, simply wait until I enter the adult world that I am so anxious for.

The petty drama of friends and relationships appears to be a huge catastrophe, but in reality it is no big deal. It seems like a big deal because I am living in the moment. Obviously I am not going to get away from it, but I have to find a way to deal with it. Drama will continue to find its way into my life, even in the workplace. There are always business politics that I will have to encounter and handle. College is a good practice for learning how to deal with relationship drama and the business politics. It is all a life lesson that I do not realize I am learning until later. Then my mom proceeded to give me advice on how to handle the immediate drama in my life right now within my relationship and friends.

My mother is so wise. As graduation day fast approaches, I realize that she was right again. I do not know why it surprises me that my mother was right. I have lived with her for twenty-one years. I should have realized by now that my mother knows all.

I remember when I was a teenager. I did not think that my motherís advice was worth much. I thought that I knew everything and she was just that embarrassing woman who drove me places and cooked really good food. I thought she was insane for giving up her career and raising children. I did not understand how lucky I was to have such a self-sacrificing mother. I look back with regret on all the conversations with my mother when I called her crazy for becoming a homemaker and homeschool teacher. I looked at it like she was putting her life on hold, but in reality, she was living her life. She may have been putting aside her professional life, but that was a sacrifice she was willing to make for the sake of her children. In her mind it was not a sacrifice, but a welcomed blessing.

Every day I see myself becoming more like my mother. I see more of myself in her (and my father) as I grow older. I guess I did not escape the trend of becoming like my parents. As a teenager I was afraid of that, but now I realize that Iím proud to have turned out like my parents. Of course Iím a different person with different hopes and dreams, but Iím proud that I have grown up to be like my parents. I appreciate more than I ever have before how much my parents have helped and guided me. I couldnít ask for anything more than to have my mother always there, loving me every step of the way, even when I did not deserve it.

My mother is coming to my college graduation, which just so happens to be on Motherís Day. It will be the greatest gift I could give. She has encouraged me in all my dreams from the second she held me in her arms as a child. My mother will get to see me walk across the stage to receive my diploma from Mount St. Maryís University. She will be able to see her oldest daughter fulfilling her dream, which is a dream that she has had since I was born. It was difficult for her to drive away and leave her daughter behind four years ago. In my cluelessness and excitement at starting college, I had no idea that she cried almost all the way home in the car. She has been my number one cheerleader since day one.

Thank you for your immense wisdom and self-sacrifice. I will love you forever, Mom. Enjoy watching both of our dreams come true.

Read past editions of Samantha Strub's Four Years at the Mount