O Me! O Life! – Graduation: time to ‘contribute a verse’…

In just over a weeks time I will be donning the cap, gown and brown hood signalling Bachelor of Arts. Before I arrived at university I longed to be in that academic powerhouse, surrounded by people who enjoyed the same things as I did and thought the same way I do. So, coming to the end of my undergraduate degree is a big deal.

Royal Holloway was not in my original UCAS application. It wasn’t until April that I applied and got in here. You could say it was my sixth choice… Regardless, I was pretty desperate at the time. But I think I got a good deal.

My three years at Royal Holloway have been amazing and challenging. You gain so much more than a degree; you learn so much more than your degree. I am so thankful for each and every person I have encountered here, friends, teachers, employers, and all the other people you just get to know. Each person helped make my experience just what it was.

It is now that is the scary part, leaving all this behind.

Founders Building, Royal Holloway, University of London
Founders Building, Royal Holloway, University of London

What I hope for, is that I, more than ever, relish life, opportunities and strive to always be the best version of myself, and to always, always, make a difference, in spite of the fact that the majority of things in my life are now about to change. Walt Whitman has some advice when we get to these points in our lives with lots of questioning and change.

O ME! O life!… of the questions of these recurring;
Of the endless trains of the faithless—of cities fill’d with the foolish;
Of myself forever reproaching myself, (for who more foolish than I, and who more faithless?)
Of eyes that vainly crave the light—of the objects mean—of the struggle ever renew’d;
Of the poor results of all—of the plodding and sordid crowds I see around me;
Of the empty and useless years of the rest—with the rest me intertwined;
The question, O me! so sad, recurring—What good amid these, O me, O life?

Answer.

That you are here—that life exists, and identity;
That the powerful play goes on, and you will contribute a verse.

In times of uncertainty, remember to contribute the best verse you can.

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