The first three weeks.

The first three weeks of the semester are strange, because they’re not really an indication of what the rest of the semester will be like, but they aren’t anything like the three weeks before them either.

You get up and you go to class and you do homework and you work and then you go to bed and do it all over again.  But you’re not having to work for it.  There are no late night study sessions.  You don’t spend the night on the floor of your bedroom with your notes and a cup of coffee. You just, exist, in a routine, simple sort of way.  Until suddenly everything is late, everything is hard, the world is on fire, and you’re crying.

The first three weeks of a Capstone semester are even more strange, because they’re a sort of limbo. Nothing happens, nothing is due.  And yet, if you do nothing, you’re suddenly behind and scrambling.

No one is presenting, no one is finished, but some people are close, in their final stretch, running toward the finish line because they want to be done so badly that they can taste it.  But no one is there quite yet. They’re writing their papers and building their presentation and scheduling their time slots and looking toward graduation day with hope. And then next week, suddenly their advisors will be expecting something that they wont have and they’ll realize the end is closer than they think and they’ll panic a little.

But for now, all is calm.  The storm won’t come for a little while more.

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