Today I am beyond excited to introduce all of you to Miss Kerry DeVito, a beautiful young lady and fiercely talented writer who is near to my heart. I think you will discover quickly that her soul matches her prose. Stunning & Refreshing. Find more of her inspirational writing here. Thank you Kerry for posting today!
“Dad, I’m going to live with her now,” she said, her little curls of sand leaking from her ponytail. She walked over to me and took my hand and said, “Let’s go!” I’ll never forget her four-year-old determination, the look of pure happiness and all sorts of excitement in her blue eyes. So intent on reaching big girl status.
But there was something she’d need to know before she left the safe and comfortable confines of her parents’ rustic home. I knelt down before her, holding both her fragile hands in mine, and told her an important truth: “Delia, you know, I’m not a very good cook,” I said, and with that, Delia, her dad and I laughed, giggling at the classic moment when a child wishes they could instantly soar their way into adulthood. But as I think on it now, I’m not quite as jolly as I was then, mostly because I find myself in a completely opposite pair of shoes than Delia; I’m wishing I could float on back to the blessed moments of childhood.
Here’s a fact concerning my new adulthood: I was miserable the morning of my college graduation. And though I wish I could, I can’t attribute it to a minor hangover and slight case of dehydration. No, instead, I was bathing in my misery just for the sake of being miserable—a cold, marbleized I-could-care-less-about-my-diploma gloom. It was quite the pity party, and I’m glad I didn’t send out any invites, because, honestly, I’m rather embarrassed by it.
So I sat, shrouded in black, listening to the commencement speeches and looking around with a dewy daze that my blue eyes sometimes get. I pretended that the moment didn’t matter; just another chapter ending, doors closing, a comfortable fist releasing me into the wild. I wasn’t feeling the hysterical “yays” or teary “nays” that my fellow classmates were experiencing. I was just there to get my diploma and get the heck out of the crowded mess. I dodged a lot of post-diploma acceptance photos, made a quick round of hellos and goodbyes, and set off to pack the rest of my things into my little blue Honda. Then I was off, heading back home to Rhode Island, a really small place with a really small job market. And I was starting to realize how really real it all was.
It was an hour and a half later that I pulled into my driveway, and the first person to greet me was my four-year old neighbor, little Delia, bouncing along in her youthful glory. She had recently taken to the art of bicycling, and hardly had use for training wheels. As she pulled her two-wheeler into my driveway it hit me that she was growing up just as quickly as I was. If I didn’t have half of my life to unpack from my car I would have gratefully shed fifteen years and grabbed my own bike to ride down the road with her. But I had to unpack the last four years of my life and put it away in picture frames, store it in my memory, pretend that it wasn’t over just yet.
Most people are surprised when I tell them I only recently finished unpacking. Yes, two solid months and five days later I completed the process. It wasn’t the usual brand of procrastination I usually sold myself; it was something more like a fear delay. Two feet of fear blocked me from unloading all those boxes of clothes and memories. I can’t quite say when the apprehension started to melt away—perhaps it was when my new RAs (they prefer to be called mom and dad) reminded me that I had graduated college and should start my adulthood with a clean room, at least. And so with each pair of shoes and shiny picture frame that I put away, I was one step farther from what I once knew, and five steps closer to what I still have no idea is to come.
I wish I could reveal the secret to transitioning, maybe write a book about its lost history, but I can’t. I still don’t have a definite answer to the deafening question, “So what’s next?” I’m stuck wondering just the same thing. The only piece of wisdom I have on the matter is not to give up; pursue the unknown. There is only one guy who knows what’s ahead, and He’s pretty discreet about the whole thing. I’ve put all my trust in God, and we’ve been working together at this whole next chapter thing. I might be blind as a bat right now, but I think this guy’s got my back. After attending school for sixteen plus years, I’m suddenly finding myself without homework and the excitement of back to school shopping. Instead, I scour job sites, send out ten resumes a day to different places, hoping for one thing: the start of a new chapter. My pen’s ready, and I’ve more than enough paper—now all I need is a storyline.
Kerry lives in southern Rhode Island next door to a little girl who she considers to be a best friend, a teacher, and bicycle extraordinaire. She can be found blogging here.