But that January I started sleeping my life away—if I wasn’t in class, I was crashing in Bob’s dorm room during the day since I wasn’t getting along with my roommate. I would miss my early morning classes on a regular basis because I couldn’t get out of bed on time. I had been waking up at five in the morning ever since I started at State my senior year of high school, and I suddenly couldn’t get conscious until eight or nine. At midterms I had one A, two B’s, four C’s and an F. I couldn’t seem to grasp the concepts in my basic computer class—spreadsheets, word-processors, or basic computer programming. I was still working for the paper, breaking a story early in the semester on MSU being the first university in the state to offer co-ed dorms coming that fall. But I had trouble rewriting press releases and turned in a few stories that needed corrections run in the next edition. I was finally fired from there after my editor took offense at comments Bob made to her at the end-of-the-year dinner, but the incoming editor said he would accept a resignation letter instead.
I had met Bob’s parents earlier in the summer, who wondered at my manic state and tried to forbid him to date me. But as I stumbled through my senior semester, I could see the wheels coming off of our relationship anyway. I was trying to interview for jobs and land one for after I graduated, but the economy wasn’t doing well, and people were leery of hiring a nineteen-year-old college graduate. My parents only reinforced my fears at not finding good work by suggesting that I apply for secretarial jobs that didn’t require a degree—my mom commenting that I had “wasted” my education majoring in journalism. I knew I was depressed but put it off on my circumstances, which seemed dire to me. I was facing the prospect of moving back home after graduation and being a failure at life.
I kept going because I knew I would only require six hours of classes to finish my degree if I could only survive this semester. And survive I did, making four A’s, three B’s and a C. Bob and I ended the semester with an agreement to see other people over the summer—he was going to Germany for an internship, and I would be finishing my last two classes that summer. He had another year to graduate, and I still hasn’t found a job