Marina Keegan had just finished her degree at Yale University. She was a prolific and talented writer. Yet I would never have heard of her had my friend not sent me the link this afternoon.
It’s not quite love and it’s not quite community; it’s just this feeling that there are people, an abundance of people, who are in this together. Who are on your team. When the check is paid and you stay at the table. When it’s four a.m. and no one goes to bed. That night with the guitar. That night we can’t remember. That time we did, we went, we saw, we laughed, we felt. The hats.
In the article Marina spoke of not letting go of the urge to try for more, to not stop until we reached our goals, and that the end of university did not signal the end of the chances we had to try something new.
Of course, there are things we wished we did: our readings, that boy across the hall. We’re our own hardest critics and it’s easy to let ourselves down. Sleeping too late. Procrastinating. Cutting corners. More than once I’ve looked back on my High School self and thought: how did I do that? How did I work so hard? Our private insecurities follow us and will always follow us.
I was shocked when the first comments said 'Rest in Peace'. So much so that I wondered whether it was another internet hoax. Sadly it wasn't, instead, here was a talented, determined, hardworking, and loving young woman; who had given so much of her time and energy to promoting a better world, dying in a tragic road accident aged 22.
We’re so young. We’re so young. We’re twenty-two years old. We have so much time. There’s this sentiment I sometimes sense, creeping in our collective conscious as we lay alone after a party, or pack up our books when we give in and go out – that it is somehow too late. That others are somehow ahead. More accomplished, more specialized. More on the path to somehow saving the world, somehow creating or inventing or improving. That it’s too late now to BEGIN a beginning and we must settle for continuance, for commencement.
I urge you to read Marina's essay, it has a profound poignancy knowing how little time Marina had after it had been written. Personally it made me want to strive to do more with the time that I have, it made me thankful that I am alive, and forced me to sit down at my desk and finally start writing that play I've been banging on about all year.