Tuesday, July 7, 2015

The One Thing

"Uncertainty is a sign of humility, and humility is just the ability or the willingness to learn." - Charlie Sheen

            My college graduation was one of the happiest days of my life. The people I loved were there supporting me. The friends I spent the past four years with were there sitting next to me. And my professors had nothing but praises for me as I thanked them for everything they’ve taught me. It was great. So great even, that I think it was God’s way of giving me one last really happy day before – LIFE!

            I think every post-grad can concur that life after college sucks. Responsibility sucks. Expectations for things you’re not ready for sucks. And all the independence, freedom, and low responsibility you had in college is gone, which really really sucks. Now it’s time to get serious and figure out pretty much everything, and you just don’t have a clue. And for all those people who do have a clue and things mostly figured out – I hate them just a little bit (kidding... kind of).

            But for most of us normal people, there’s just a whole lot of uncertainty. It’s funny to me, because over a year has passed since I’ve graduated, and when I reflect back, I just think to myself, “What the heck am I doing with my life?” Growing up, a lot of people don’t know what they want to do with their lives. They may have ideas, or dreams, but not sure how to achieve them or don’t think they are realistic. My one dream since I was nine was that I wanted to become a novelist. 

            I always knew I wanted to write, but I always knew that it wasn’t entirely realistic. I can’t live off of my writing alone, because I am no Jane Austen (who lived 'by her pen' rather successfully), and I don’t want to be Stephanie Myers or E.L. James (become very rich and famous for horribly written books). In college, I became an English major with a Sociology minor, but I still had a lot to figure out. During my last year of college, grad school was on my mind, but where the heck did I want to go, and more importantly, what the heck did I want to study? I knew everything I didn't want, but aside from writing, I didn't know what I wanted to do with my life. So, I graduated (happy day), then a whole lot of miserable reality after. My plan of going straight into a master’s program after undergrad and getting a decent job (that pays more than minimum wage) didn’t happen. And every aspect of my life just seemed completely uncertiain.

            And just to lay it clear, here is everything I’ve been uncertain about during this past year:
  • What program to study
  • What school to go to
  • Where I was going to live
  • Who I was going to live with
  • Where I wanted to work
  • Where I wanted to volunteer
  • Where to go to church
  • How I would afford loan payments, rent, bills, food, etc if my parents couldn't help me

            Pretty big life decisions that I think is part of the twenties struggles, and that's not including those who are considering marriage and starting a family. But, I kept making plans, that honestly all fell through. I had wanted to take a year off to figure out school stuff and start Fall 2015. I finally decided that I want to get a master’s in counseling to get my MFT, but by the time I decided that, I missed the deadlines to start in the fall. I planned on moving out with a few friends, but one by one that didn’t work out. After months of post-grad depression, I got a minimum wage job, that at first I was thankful for and I liked. Been there for nine months now and I plan on quitting very soon. And all I can say to all of that is that life sucks, and it’s hard sometimes and just likes to kick you around a lot.

            Thank God, I’m an optimist. This past year has been so hard and so uncertain for all these reasons and more, but there is one thing that has kept me grounded. I haven’t stopped writing. It’s been my one thing that I’ve been certain about through all the uncertainty. I stopped writing for a couple months after I graduated, but thankfully I have a very good friend who shares my passion. So, we started meeting once a week to write and critique each other. I also, became dedicated to my blog again. So that at least I knew that every week I would be writing. My blog would be to help others, and meeting with my friend would be to help her and me. And it’s given me a lot of happiness.

            There are other things I’ve had that I’m thankful for, like all of my close friends, my pets, my family, etc. There all there being constant and supportive in my life, but writing is the one thing I’ve been giving to myself. It’s the one choice I make constantly that I know I want to continue doing. Even if I didn’t have a clue about grad school or where I would be living, I knew I would post a new blog every week (mostly), and meet with my writing buddy once a week (mostly).

            Uncertainty happens. No matter how much we plan and prepare, we can’t predict what will happen or what direction our lives will change. We can’t even know for certain if the people who are there for us will always be there for us. But you can have one thing that you give yourself. It could be writing or music, or it could be painting, photography, dancing, reading. It could be your ambition to start a business and keep going after every failure. It could be the choice to go back to school and finish a degree. Or maybe it's the constant choice to go out and explore the world, acquire new experiences, and meet new people. Whatever it is, it’s what you constantly choose to do for you, and it’s the certainty that you can give yourself. It may not bring you success or money, but it will bring you happiness and peace of mind.

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