This is the first time in 17 years that the month of August is not filled with anticipation for a new academic year. It’s the first time I am not purchasing new pencils, new folders or new binders. It’s the first time I did not anxiously wait to receive my class schedule. It’s the first time I did not need to plan a first-day-of-class outfit.
It is the first time I am no longer expected to further my education.
One part of me is relieved. Relieved that I don’t have to travel for six hours and spend 8 eight hours unpacking my belongings. Relieved that I no longer have to prepare myself to eat “school food.” Relieved that I won’t be four hours away from a Wawa, and relieved that I won’t be an hour and a half away from a Chipotle or a mall.
But part of me is feeling a little empty as if I’ll be missing out on something. In the beginning, I would get severe anxiety when thinking about not going back to college. Maybe it’s the conclusion of my youth that has me shaken. Maybe it’s the realization that I’ll probably only go back to a place that shaped me a handful of times before I die. Maybe it’s the fact that I want my friends at my fingertips and the residual effects of debauchery to linger long after a wild weekend has passed.
But most likely, it’s just that accepting change can be a hard thing to do.
This is the first time in a long time where my life isn’t planned out for me. I don’t have anything I absolutely have to do. A schedule was once drilled into my brain. I went to school during the fall and spring semesters, and I interned during the summer. But this is the first time that my life is an open book. I’m learning to feel less anxious about my future and to feel more optimistic. This is the moment in time where the quote, “The future is what you make it,” truly comes to fruition. Understanding and accepting that I have time to figure it all out has been the best thing I could ever do.
Not being pigeon-holed into a situation has given me plenty of time to figure out where I’m headed. Everyone says, “Well, what now?” My response to them is, “Everything.”
Everything happens now.
I’ve got a lot of things cooking up in this noggin’ of mine, and we all know I’m always on the go. So stay tuned and check back for me because I’ve got some big things planned out. Now is the beginning of my life. Not the life my peers expected of me. Not the life my parents expected of me. Not the life my significant other expects of me. The life that I expect of me. So for right now I’m just doing me, and being T.