In many ways, the last night of high school felt exactly like the first. In any stage, liminalities have more commonality than we think.

First, there was the high, the exhilaration of the unknown, free from the burden of expectation, full of pure, unadulterated hope for what lies ahead. For some, this stage lasts longer than others.

There’s always an element of fear involved during transition. Maybe it’s too scary to hope. Maybe hope is the only thing you have.

Hope was alive and enough for the first few years following graduation. Friends moved to far-flung places, achieved at university, took jobs and started creating a life. But eventually, the momentum of the new and never enough begins to slow, giving way to the doubts and fears long ignored.

Am I doing the right thing?

Is this what I love, or even what I like?

Is this the fun I hoped I’d have?

Am I enough?

Is this enough?

The veneer slips away to reveal the reality of the world, of your world. This is the next stage.

I’ve not made it to where I thought I’d go. I’m still waiting, still learning, still growing as I gather the elements that worked. The hope I had, it served me well. At times, it fueled me. I’ll find it and carry it closer. The expectations I thought I needed to meet? I’m still trying to measure myself and my life by a different rubric.

You see, the stages aren’t linear. You just take what you need and leave what you don’t. As long as you’re still moving, it’s enough.