It isn’t until you are so close to the edge, so close that you can feel the wind push your hair and chill your bones, that you realize: this is it. You are leaving the warm comforting womb of college and academics and venturing off into the great, big world. You’re probably thinking, “I’m not ready,” and you’re probably right, you’re not. Fears of becoming unemployed forever, useless beyond opening pickle jars and killing flies, fill your head and you can’t see past that. You breakdown, you cry, you get back up again, you start over. This is the process of the college graduate. I am experiencing it, my friends are experiencing it, and you may too.
You’re not alone.
I’ve been told that writing things down helps you deal with the stresses and anxieties at hand. Okay, time for one final assignment. If you feel sad or anxious or scared, take out your phone or a piece of paper or write on your hand exactly why you feel this way. Explore this feeling. Delve deep into your heart and pull out the fear, pull out the sadness, and look at it for what it is: temporary. Write them all down and after each one, in huge, bold letters write that word. Let them remain temporary and they won’t bother you anymore.
I never saw myself graduating college. The process itself was grueling and tedious and expensive. You just think that there’s nothing more to life than this, right now. Class, drinks, study, tests, pay tuition. There may be no beauty in the process, but the product is stunningly radiant. Then you reach those penultimate days where the finish line is in sight and you can hear the cheering crowd. Your parents are crying with joy, your friends are with you, feet stamping the pavement, and you don’t know they’re there until you look around. Forget about the finish line, forget that it’s something ending. Look around at your family and your friends and see this for what it is: It’s the beginning. Your whole life is right there in front of you and it’s bright and shiny and new. It’s okay to be afraid of the unknown. It’s okay to not be ready. It’s okay to feel whatever you’re feeling.
I’m not ready, but that’s not going to stop me.