Dedicated to my fellow victims of pre-college jitters.
‘Twas the night before college, when all through my head
My thoughts formed a clutter of worry and dread.
The fears of what lay ahead of me were deep,
Preventing my mind from getting some sleep.
I sprang from my bed in my jittery distress.
“If I don’t sleep right now, I’ll wake up a hot mess.”
But these questions wouldn’t stop agitating my mind,
Bombarding me from the front and from the behind.
Will there be people I meet, who will like me for me?
Or will I have to compete in a social Grand Prix?
I’ll oil my engine and shine up my hood.
Heck, who am I kidding? I’m a loner for good.
Is everything ready, my supplies all set?
Is there anything that I happened to forget?
What if I’m late or I can’t find my class?
And what if I make myself look like an ass?
“Stop being so glum,” I said under my breath,
“You’ll choke in your stress and worry to death.”
So I tried to imagine the best case scenario,
But only succeeded in thoughts “au contrario”:
“You loser! You failure! You stupid, dumb idjit!
You’re foolish! You’re hopeless, you slow-minded nitwit!
Don’t open your mouth for fear you might spread,
Your numbskull ideas and your IQ of bread!”
Well, that didn’t help. Good Lord, was I sweating?
Who knew that college could be so upsetting?
And I’d yet to start. It was still Sunday evening.
I had a few hours left before I’d be leaving.
No sugarplum visions would waltz in my head.
I’d be screaming of nightmares if I ever got to bed.
It was like Christmas eve, except without all the joys.
And without the fresh cookies and waiting for toys.
It was more like death row and I’d committed one crime:
Failed college in a day – a Guinness record of time.
I’d eaten my meal that I’d blandly requested,
A plate full of nerves, which I sourly ingested.
At that moment I looked at the mirror beside me,
And I jolted upright as I saw my own zombie.
My eyes – how they drooped. My dimples – how bleak!
My cheeks were like ashtrays. My nose sprang a leak.
This couldn’t be healthy. I mean, what the heck?
It was like Halloween from my scalp to my neck.
I had class in the morning! I needed some sleep!
I did everything from poetry to counting some sheep.
So I went back to bed and I pulled closed my eyes
And changed up my strategy by thinking of lies
Of good things happening on my first day of classes,
Instead of me drowning in my mind of molasses.
At first, it was tough because of the jitters.
It was worse than Starbuck’s apple pie fritters*.
But after a while, my mind settled down,
And giving a snort, I was knocked outta’ town.
Off to the land of “La La’s” I went,
Where no drop of fun was left unspent.
As soon as I reached my own slice of heaven –
“Holy crap! It’s noon! Class started at eleven!”
* I don’t think Starbuck’s apple pie fritters are bad. I just needed something to rhyme with “jitters,” so don’t sue me.