The vacation eventually ends. The Earth begins to rotate again and the world around you becomes privy of your existence. And just like that everything comes surging back to the surface. Bills, relationships, responsibilities; everything you have been avoiding comes down on you like a torrential downpour of utter misery. Do you grab an umbrella? Do you swim through it? Do you allow yourself to become drenched from head to toe in nothing but sadness and misery? The decision is up to you, but I’m here to tell you that the answer should be no.
The world is a scary place and it gets through to everyone in some way, shape, or form. The first thing you must do is cry. Yes, cry. Let it all out. Buckets and gallons and aqueducts. If you didn’t already know, the actual function of tears is to preserve and hold all of the anxieties and sadness and misery and keep it tucked very neatly in your brain. The more tears you hold back, the heavier the emotions become. So I say cry. Release your body from all of the negativity and emotions. Scream and shout and bang your fists against a pillow, because if you don’t then these feelings will remain within you forever.
Next, I want you to breathe and to not panic. Simple, I know, yet you’d be surprised how little people think when they stop breathing. So, breathe. In and out. In and out. Everything will be okay, because this is just one moment in your life. It doesn’t define you. Your moments of weakness, like the one you’re having right this second, will pass. They will evaporate and cease to exist. You will get through this, I promise you that much.
When the vacation ends, it’ll hit you hard. The world is ruthless and relentless like that. We can’t change that. All we can do is cry, breathe, and take it one small step at a time and know that it will get better. We may not be able to change the world, but we can change how it affects us. Let’s not let it.
I have noticed that there is always a lingering sense of finality in this world. The week always has an end. Our college careers are loomed over by graduation. We dwell on the fact that we could die tomorrow. So often have I been told to live in the moment, to see where things go. But when my life has been ruled by the fact that everything is so final, I can hardly focus on anything but that. For so long, I was obsessed with the final destination and not the journey. That’s why I took my final Spring Break to focus inward; on my life and my decisions. For three years, I have seen Spring Break defined as the time to let go of our inhibitions and get as drunk as our bodies will let us. I felt like my break wasn’t as good and couldn’t compare to my peers who were going out, blacking out, and losing teeth (literally). I thought that if I hung out alone and scarcely saw friends or went out or got drunk, that I wasn’t “doing it right.” Especially this being my final Spring Break, the pressure was on. Adventures were to be had every day and alcohol should be consumed at a minimum of 90% of the time, excluding sleeping hours. What was different this time around was that I realized that that notion was a reality; moreover a reality that I didn’t want to adopt because it just made me feel sad. So instead, I went out on adventures when I wanted to. Sometimes with friends, mostly alone. Alcohol was not consumed. And memories were made. My decision was to define Spring Break as something that doesn’t make me feel like a total loser. My decision was to do what I wanted and not let anyone else make me feel like I was less than. I’m not less than. Even better, I learned to own my decisions because to live with regret at the young age of twenty-two is probably something my doctor would highly advise against.
Spring Break Cabrillo Point
Spring Break Mount Soledad
Spring Break Presidio Park
The Tools for Spring Break
One of the major things I had learned from this break is that things that you plan sometimes don’t work out. At that point you have a decision to make: let it go and admit defeat or make the best of it. I chose and will always choose to make the best of it. Failures are inevitable; regardless of that you do have the choice to hold back and reevaluate or move past them. Your life can be planned out and calculated, but the possibilities are still endless. Don’t let that deter you from achieving greatness. Adventure is out there if you seek it. It comes in different shapes and is experienced with different people or alone. It can have drunken stupors or sober epiphanies. It can hurt and it can heal. The world is what you make of it, don’t let someone else’s views corrupt yours.
Go forth and wander.