When I compare my life now as a rising senior in College to my life back when I was a rising senior in High School I’ve come to the conclusion that for two seemingly different times in my life-they are actually very similar.
Remember that time that you were 17 or 18 years old? And remember how that automatically made everyone around you feel entitled to ask you what you were doing post-graduation? Remember how people felt entitled to ask you where you were going to college way before applications were even available? Well think about how awful and annoying that time in your life was and then think about how awful and annoying it would be to experience it again four years later-welcome to my life.
Even as a freshman I remember a few inquiries here and there about what I wanted to do post-undergrad even though I had barely even begun my college journey. Now as a senior I don’t think that I can make it through the day without getting multiple inquiries about my future from curious parents on tours, faculty members, or even my friends; and the truth is the more people that ask me about it, the less interested and motivated I am to figure out what lies ahead for me. I don’t know what I want to do and I’ve never really known what I ultimately want to do or where my life is taking me but I have been perfectly content with the opportunities that I have taken and the decisions that I have made up until this point in my life. I have always been content because even if my life path in the long run may not be too clear right now, the experiences that I have been fortunate enough to have are enough to reassure me that I must be doing something right and eventually I’ll figure things out I just need to keep doing what I’m doing.
So what’s my answer when someone asks me what I’m doing after I graduate? I don’t have an answer-I don’t know. Even though I’m okay with the unknown, I often feel like the majority of people are not. Most people seem to be unsatisfied and unsettled by the idea that a year away from entering the real world I am still entirely clueless.
I think the reason why it doesn’t bother me it because I have goals, I have dreams, I have ambitions. My goal is to be happy, plain and simple and throughout my life experiences thus far I have found things that make me happy but almost more importantly I have discovered what doesn’t make me happy. For instance, I know that my future will not consist of me wearing a suit to work every day and sitting in front of a computer screen from 8-5. I know that my future has to involve my return to the Middle East because I know if it does not I will forever regret not going back. Honestly, it’s comforting knowing that I’m not going to settle and whatever I choose to do is because I genuinely wanted to do it. Of course I have dreams-when I was younger it was to be a firefighter or an astronaut and now of course I still have those crazy dream jobs. My dream jobs of the moment are to-become a commercial pilot, become a chef and own a restaurant, or work for National Geographic. These may or may not be realistic-that is an arguable point-but I think that having big dreams keeps me sane. My ambition of the moment? To remain calm through all of this senior year chaos of finding a career or the perfect job. I don’t know what the perfect job is yet, I have no clue but that doesn’t faze me.
What really scares me is that with this liberal arts degree from the College, the options and possibilities of what I can do are endless and that is scary, overwhelming, yet incredibly exciting all at the same time. I’ll ease the pressure that people feel so entitled to put on me by just continuing to do what I love and what I feel is right because so far I’m doing fine and I truly believe that every decision, choice, or mistake that I’ve made so far has taken me somewhere. So sure I’m not sure where exactly I’m going on this journey but-I’m going.