Seasons and people are meant to come and go

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Seasons and people are meant to come and go

Seasons and people are meant to come and go

Seasons and people are meant to come and go

Seasons and people are meant to come and go

Seasons and people are meant to come and go

By Brooke Pawling Stennett

A few weeks ago, as I sat on the porch of my apartment, I contemplated the people I had lost during my short three years at Columbia. It wasn’t as though they had perished but rather had disappeared from my life in some way or another: petty drama, life became too busy or we outgrew each other. But I still mourned.

Earlier that night on the train platform, a woman who was probably in her late 20s complimented my shoes. I usually shy away from talking to strangers, but there was something about her that was soothing, almost sisterly. We kept talking as we boarded the train, and as the stops went by, I opened up to her and told her about the people I had lost and the grief that came with it.

She gently told me that people are like seasons. Certain people come in and out of our lives, and it’s OK to mourn them and the people we were when we had them. We mourn every time our lives move into a new season because we’ve become different people.

As my graduation date looms, I am in mourning: For the me who was brave enough to move to Chicago with no family or friends, for a major I didn’t even know I could be good at, and for the friends who have helped me along the way that I loved until the bitter end.

While I will mourn these seasonal changes for a time to come, I must thank those who have remained or became a steady constant as I weathered through those shifts in time.

Zoë Haworth and Lauren Carlton, your friendship is something I want to hold onto always, in every capacity, in every state of being. Chris Richert, I hope to be as selfless, kind and loving as you are every day. You have become a dear mentor, manager and friend that I will remember as long as I live.

To the advisers, Len Strazewski, Stephanie Goldberg, thank you for the donuts, the jokes and the lessons that will be hard to forget. Zoë Eitel, thank you for your couch those years ago and your friendship along the way. To the rest of management, I am honored to have been on the same team as you in this moment of our lives. 

To Jonathon Sadowski and Tyra Bosnic, we started together in The Chronicle two years ago and I will always be a resource of guidance or comfort whenever you need it. Jackie Murray and Kendrah Villiesse, you’re both incredible women who have found their passion and lived it fully, and for that inspiration, I thank you.

To my grandma for passing on your tender heart, I cherish it everyday. To my grandpa, who taught me to always finish a project with the utmost care, I will treasure you both until my light goes out. To my sister, you are worth more than you think you are. Don’t ever distance yourself from the light that draws people to you.

And lastly, to my parents, who have weathered the storm that is me. You have given me more love, support and sacrifices than are deserved. I can only hope to emulate the strength, stubbornness and selflessness you possess as I brace myself for the future I am so terrified of.

It’s true: I am terrified. I do not want to mourn for the rest of my life. I do not want to lose the me that is right here, in this moment, facing a new beginning head-on. But if there is anything that can comfort me, it is that the people in my life today taught me to love myself even after the season ends. 

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