I remember first school day eves better than most rituals of my childhood. The way it felt to be totally organized for a few hours — school supplies lined neatly up on the carpet, so I could just take all the possibility in. It was exciting, that freshness. Even though I went to the same school for nine years, there was this sense of being on the verge of something, of reaching benchmarks.
I think tomorrow I’ll have Joe take a picture of me standing on our stoop with my new Drake University briefcase filled with my books for the first day of graduate school. I haven’t laid out color-coded folders or sharpened pencils, but I do feel that I’m coming up on some exciting chapter, to get all cliche. I’m looking forward to meeting people in my classes, to being challenged in a new way. Ask me again how I feel the night before my first accounting exam and it all might be a different story. But for tonight, I’m that little kid again, laying out her clothes and hoping she’ll sit next to a new best friend on the first day of school.