The music of Ingrid Michaelson hums through my headphones, laced with the occasional whirr of the coffee grinder. I am surrounded by friends, strangers, strangers that I wish were friends. The cushions on this bench do practically nothing, and I am uncomfortable, but I stay here for hours. I don’t want to leave, because even though I’m alone, I’m with them. Hearing the overlapping voices, the intertwined conversations, the laughter peppered throughout. I will miss this place. I’ve decided to start saying my goodbyes now. One goodbye a day, for the rest of this time I have here on this dot of the map that I’ve come to love so much. Today, I say goodbye to the Student Union, with its ridiculous temperature fluctuations, its eclectic outdated architecture, its lack of sufficient space. It has become the hub of my graduate school life. I come here to work, to talk, to eat, to write. I love running into people here, and enjoying unexpected fellowship instead of working like I “should.” But really, this is what I should be doing…soaking up every minute with these beautiful, crazy people. The clock is ticking, and I feel its hands pushing on my back, forcing me forward second by second toward a future that is still blurry, out of focus. This moment, right here on the bench in the Union, however, is crystal clear and perfect. And for now, it’s all mine.