Last saturday I walked across the stage on my campus green, and accepted my degree in English with minors in creative writing and art history, wearing At Last by Lollia and just a small dash of Miss Dior by Christian Dior. During the ceremony I was caught in a frenzy of nostalgia. Memories of sitting in the middle of the green late at night tipsy and in the company of good people, or of the time it took both my roommate and I to throw out a rotten pumpkin that had exploded, or of all the nights when my friends and I would have dance parties in a tiny dorm room, stomping through the art dorm reeking havoc, and just being young filled my mind.
As a freshman I wore a cheap weave, acid wash jeans with band t-shirts, and drenched myself in Very Hollywood by Michael Kors. I was confused, naive, and spunky. Princess by Vera Wang made me feel confident and girlish. I remember fondly splashing on some Very Hollywood just before class each morning thinking I’d found my scent. I thought I found a lot more by that point too. Sophomore year brought on not only a slew of more interesting friends, I hope will become lifelong, but also a brand-new selection of scents thanks to a sample set my mother gifted me. That’s when I met the classics both in poetry and perfume. I was thumbing through poetry anthologies from the romantic era while sniffing White Linen. I was curious and vastly more aware of my naivety, which I embraced. I took courses in subjects I knew nothing about, made friends with people outside my comfort zone, and lived in the infamous art dorm. Armed with romantic poetry and my mother’s perfume hand me downs, I survived for better or worse.
By the end of junior year I had discovered the world of niche brands and a greater appreciation for black literature. Junior year me was confident and excited about all of the new creative inspirations that fascinated me. I started to fancy french things by way of Josephine Baker and naturally Miss Dior became a favorite. It wasn’t until winter break of my senior year that I realized which notes I craved over others or, that I could even make such a distinction. In the same way that I had realized my love for notes like patchouli, sandalwood, and jasmine I had also discovered my passion for jazz, its history, and the way all of this effected my writing and rendered my womanhood.
I wore At last at my graduation because it is a beautiful scent from a niche brand that captures the essence of things like graduation. I also wore a small dash of Miss Dior as an ode to the young naive girl I came here as. I loved college and I won’t forsake the ones that I met nor the passions I discovered there. But, it’s time for the next chapter.