Moth, I Shall Be | Teen Ink

Moth, I Shall Be

February 26, 2013
By JackieH PLATINUM, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
JackieH PLATINUM, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
36 articles 0 photos 22 comments

Favorite Quote:
Don't break character, you've got a lot of heart. ~ The Killers

Why is it that when I see purple I automatically associate it with NYU instead of Barney or whatever freshman associate it with? I would say it’s because I’m an overachiever who can’t help herself when she gets reminded of leaving her home and her family to go to college. Others would argue it’s because I’m a crazy woman whose insanity has turned into color-blindness. If I were a teenager who took everything as a jab and a knife in my ear maybe it would offend me, but my superiority complex has too much of a strong foundation for that.
Everyone thinks rudeness stems from jealousy. My peers have told me on multiple occasions that they think I would rather be a normal girl than the workaholic I’ve grown to be. First, I make it clear to them that I’m the normal one and they’re the clichés. Then I tell them how it is. My ‘workaholism’ is stemmed not from jealousy or to fill a social or domestic void I have in my soul but it comes from the hatred I have for their popular butts. They haven’t had to work a day in their life and suddenly they’re better than me. If society had labeled me as a gorgeous cheerleader the minute I walked in the door I would’ve put them in line and said, ‘I refuse to be the robots programmed by the deformed minds of the students who are refusing to be anything more than social butterflies. I enjoy being a social moth so a moth I shall be!’ All in all, I can’t wait to be out of here.
One of the hardest parts is getting my parents to cooperate. I’m their youngest child and they’re sick of supporting children. I couldn’t help being born but hey, I’m to blame. My father works day and night while my mom claims to do the same, although I come home to find her napping daily. I love the two of them, I’d just love them more if they made dinner every once in awhile. I knew college would be trouble in freshman year when I brought up the idea of NYU. They said, “Wow, that’s expensive. Good luck.”
I knew I would have to handle it. I joined newspaper, started a literary magazine and entered every contest I could get my hands on. I won an Ipad once. I couldn’t really put that on my application though. I didn’t have room. That National Honors Society takes up some space. I didn’t expect to get a full scholarship, but I did expect to get on the New York Times Bestsellers list before my college career was over. Maybe not the best thing to depend on but it was probable. It physically hurt to apply to other schools. The only thing I had to make me laugh was the brochure the University of Las Vegas wasted on me. I was accepted to Temple with a full ride. I cried when I got it. It made me feel impressive. For the first time in my life something confirmed my belief that I had potential. That day I went to my room and cried into my pillow with the widest smile on my face. If my parents weren’t going to give me paddles the wind would sail me towards success.
I’d been having dreams as a future NYU student for months. Every night I close my eyes knowing I’m going to fade into a world where I’m handing in an essay I just wrote about life in a small town full of preps and pretentious high schoolers. I picture myself dancing with Ellen before answering questions about my inspirations. If only I could skip a couple years.
Like I was saying, I see purple. There’s a purple envelope sticking out of my mailbox. I know what that means. I know what it could mean. This was in many dreams. What if I didn’t get in? What if they told me I was too late? What if I got a major papercut while opening the envelope and died? I opened the mailbox and saw it was from NYU and was most definitely addressed to me. I took it out and started peeling away at the flap holding my future from revealing itself. By the time the envelope was open my heart was racing like Lance Armstrong, double the steroids.
I looked up from the envelope. I figured this was a moment I’d remember for the rest of my life. A moment I would tell me kids. Instead of looking at my future I was looking at my past. I spent the last four years of my life waiting for this moment. I was sure this was what I wanted. I was sure my fellow students would be happy to have me far away in the big bad city. I was sure my parents wouldn’t care much. I took out the paper. The first words were,
‘We are...’
I closed my eyes. Could I really look at this? Could I just throw this whole town away and leave my parents behind? What would I do around peers that respected literature and were equally as talented as me? Could I survive? I told myself I was strong. I lived through 18 years of settling. I’ve lived through 18 years of living in a place where paper was primarily used to make faulty airplanes. I took one more deep breath and opened my eyes.
‘happy to congratulate you on your acceptance to New York University.’

The author's comments:
I wrote this for the school newspaper.

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