CHAPTER FIVE HUNDRED and FIFTY-THREE
“It’s a crazy thing,” her advisor said. “She only needs a few thousand dollars — three, I think. But …”
Jill set her bag and her book satchel down.
“I’m sorry. I probably shouldn’t have said all of that,” her advisor said.
“I’m glad to know,” Jill said. “What an awful thing!”
“So many people don’t even remember we’re at war,” her advisor sighed.
“So.” Her advisor took a breath and smiled at Jill. “This is a little happier appointment.”
“You’ve done well in school, Jill.” Her advisor pulled Jill’s file out of a stack on her desk. “You’ve met all of your basic requirements. It’s time to declare your major and move forward into your profession.”
“I want to be an interior designer,” Jill said.
“Of course,” her advisor said. “I remembered that. But I like to talk to every student at this moment. It’s good to be clear and focus on what you want, at the same time, life is long. You may want to take a minor or a more general major so that you can have a broader base. Twenty years from now, you could need another skill and would draw on those skills.”
“Oh, I see,” Jill said. “If I focus up on just interior design, I might limit myself in the future.”
“Exactly,” her advisor said. “You’re already good at interior design, Jill. You and your husband rehabbed a friend of mine’s home. It was stunning. Truly beautiful.”
Her advisor caught Jill’s eyes.
“Why not learn something you don’t do as well?” her advisor asked. “Going to college is such a great honor. It’s unlikely that you’ll take this kind of time later in life to just learn. These last two years are a great chance to draw deeply into other topics. I’ve seen it really change lives — maybe not at first, but later as their passion for their careers matures.”
“Why not …?” Jill asked. She stumbled a bit in her mind. “Well, I don’t …”
Jill’s eyes caught the date on the “Quote-a-Day” calendar on the advisor’s desk.
“Is that the date?” Jill asked.
The advisor’s looked concerned for Jill. She nodded.
Jill felt the ground come up under her. Her feet were on solid ground again. She was steady again.
Trevor was killed three years ago tonight.
Ha. That’s what was wrong with me!
“I’m sorry,” Jill said. “You must think that I’m a complete nut. I’ve been really spacy today and I couldn’t figure out why.”
The advisor silently tracked her words.
“My ex-husband was killed on this date,” Jill said.
“I’m so sorry,” the advisor said.
“It’s a mixed bag really,” Jill said. “I would never be here if he was still living. I mean, you don’t want to celebrate in anyone’s death.”
“I understand,” the advisor said.
“So, what would you recommend that I spend time studying?” Jill asked.
Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…
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