In just a little over a week I am graduating with my undergraduate degree from the University of Maine, where I have spent the last four years of my life, changed my major/minor on three plus occasions, met some of the most amazing people in my life, grew as an individual on so many levels and have had some incredible opportunities. But I am the only one leaving, my friends are continuing their education here, my family moved to Florida and I am going to Oregon.
Oregon, over three thousand miles away.
So should I be happy and excited for this new chapter, or scared and nervous?
Should I be sad to be leaving my family in Orono and sadder to be further away from my real family?
Why can't I feel all six of those emotions?
I should be incredibly excited and happy to have finished my undergraduate degree, in incredibly good standing, in four years when the majority of the University finishes their bachelor's degree in five or more. I accomplished something that my immediate family never did. I even did so with minimal debt, because I worked incredibly hard to get where I am. I should feel excited and happy.
I should feel excited that I was accepted into the top Chiropractic school in the country on the grounds that I graduate in good standing (which I am). I was accepted to do a concurrent degree as a Doctorate of Chiropractic and Masters in Sports Medicine.
But I should also feel nervous, I am moving from the east coast to the west coast. From the middle of nowhere (x2) to a large city. To live and spend all of my time with people I have never met before and incredibly far away from my entire family who will reside on the East coast while I finish my degree. I should be nervous about finding a place to live near the campus and all the test but excited that I was given this opportunity.
While I am incredibly grateful to be graduating and continuing on with my life down a pathway where I know I am going to be happy and successful, I cannot help but feel a little sad and scared about the entire thing.
I am scared to leave everyone I love here and am sad that I will be so far away from them. They are my entire support system and are constantly making me smile and laugh. I am sad that I will be leaving the University that I fell in love with and the scenery we have here.
I know that my friends will always be my friends, even from across the country. My family will always love and support me, no matter where I go. And I can always come back to visit, but just the reality of everything coming to an end is definitely difficult.
So I feel happy, excited, scared, nervous, and sad.
And honestly, it is super weird to feel all of these emotions about a simple thing: graduation.
And sometimes it feels really dumb to be sad about it, or really weird to be excited to leave, but in reality, it is all completely normal. It is normal to feel a plethora of weird emotions and not be entirely sure how to react to them completely, but it is important to understand that you are NOT dumb, and you are not overreacting.
You are being human.
So keep your head up, let the emotions run high, finish the year out strong and laugh your ass off with the most important people because in the end, you did something amazing and they will always love and support you through it.