“From The Nest”: A Poem About Post-Graduation Anxieties

  • March 23, 2021

As my final year of highschool draws to a close, I can already feel my

Heart racing. Then again, this feeling is nothing new, this feeling did not come out of

Nowhere, this feeling has festered within me for many years.

The voice in the back of my brain, whispering wildly with cruel whimsy, finding joy

Through my anxiety surrounding such an occasion: Graduation. 

I suppose I am the baby bird leaping enthusiastically from the nest, ready to feel

The biting wind on my soft, untouched feathers, watching the multicolored quilt of

Fallen leaves rapidly approach me, smelling their earthy and comforting scent. 

But whether I am ready for such an experience is a question I have yet to answer.

Am I ready to step, run, leap out into the world, unprotected by the 

Temporary safety which childhood once provided me?

Some days I tell myself that becoming an adult and venturing out

Into the world will be unbearable, eyes watching me as I pitifully attempt to look like 

I know what I am doing. I will step into college classrooms, tweed coats observing,

And criticising, and disapproving, and marveling at my lack of sophistication. 

Poor Ellie, they will say, how helpless she looks, attempting to blend into the rest

Of the world. 

Then again, maybe it does indeed take practice to blend in so effortlessly, as I perceive

Everyone else to do. Perhaps they, too, make many embarrassing and stupid mistakes-

Yet they still make it through. They still make it to the crunchy landing onto the leaves

Of the past season.

That’s what I am told, anyway. My mother assures me I am smart enough to figure

Things out, that there have been people much less prepared for adulthood, and they are

Doing just fine.  

Is there a chance that all this worry and trepidation for the future is unneeded?

Maybe one day I’ll be able to travel nations without a second thought, and I will

See myself blossom and grow and be proud of my creations that lie in front of me.

So, maybe this first step- graduating from highschool- while intimidating,

Is my chance to finally live up to my potential and become the person I always

Wanted to be. 

No longer will I stall, and that first fall, as I am called to it all as the world awaits my

Presence will be the one thing that finally lets me step forward and break out of this

Painful cycle of doubt, anxiety, fear, and all of the other emotions plaguing me. 

 I think about my new life as an independent adult, free from the tethers that hold me to

My home.

And whether this new freedom is enlivening or overwhelming, (perhaps both),

I can only hope that someday I will learn to relish it, to be able to thrive in the new 

Environment I am awaiting once this final year of highschool is done. 

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