It seems as though time is flying by rather quickly recently. I graduate from college in about 75 days and I am not really sure how it happened! Last I remember, I was driving to Cumberland Farms with my new friend Emily for the first time, or I was sitting through my first Resident Assistant Training, or I was playing football outside of May House with my residents, or I was eating breakfast in the dining hall at 12:00am. I don’t remember fast forwarding to the part of being almost done with college.
Of course, I am ecstatic about graduating, who wouldn’t be?! For me, it is a little more than that. After going 250 miles away from home for college, I realized that this place became my new home before I knew it. I walk down the halls and know so many people, some who have become part of my family over the years. I drive all over Massachusetts and know where I am going, like the back of my hand, which still confuses me daily. I feel comfortable here, and I am going to miss that.
So the mundane question that comes from everyone, “what’s next”?
In my opinion, this answer should not be simple. I am 22 years old and I have so many opportunities ahead of me, most of which I don’t even know about yet. Maybe I will go to medical school, or maybe I will get my PhD, or maybe I won’t. Maybe I will travel abroad to work with animals and research. Maybe I will move to a different town or even another state. Maybe I will get married. Maybe I won’t. Maybe I will have children and dogs and horses, but maybe I won’t. Why does the graduation of college mark the day that you have to make all of these decisions for your life. In my opinion, nobody is obligated to do anything in life, unless it makes them happy. I have written before that I want to engulf myself in everything and anything possible. That still holds true except in 75 days, I will be engulfing myself in everything and anything possible with a nice Bachelor’s in Biology by my side.
This is one of the most beautiful things about life: it is wide open. If you don’t like your job, you can try to find a new one. If you want to go to more school, make it happen. If you want to move to another state, figure out how that will be possible. If you want a new car or to travel, save some money. If you want to go out and make an ass out of yourself (providing there is no legal trouble), great, do that. Figure out how to apologize to your friends in the morning. You get out of life what you put into it and it is as simple and as complicated as that.
It seems that we are always so ready to rush life. When you are in 8th grade, you can’t wait to get to high school. When you get to high school, you can’t wait to graduate and move away from home. When you’re in college, you can’t wait for every semester to end. When does it stop? Why can’t we take life one day at a time? Evaluate every opportunity as they come up? Change your mind about your career or even your major? Why does everything we do have to be set in stone? I don’t think it does and I definitely do not plan to live my life like that.
So, what is next might you ask? Well, I am going to keep living my life. I am going to do things that make me happy. I am going to work to make myself a better person each and every day. That’s what is next.