Moving On to the Next Chapter of Your Life and Other Clichés

Moving On to the Next Chapter of Your Life and Other Clichés

Like life is a roller coaster?
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I am writing this to gain some closure on a point in my life that substantially painted change all over me, from my body to my mind and even hair color. Just like the last four years, this will be messy because I have very little idea about where this piece is going.

To be honest, I never liked the metaphor of life as a book. A 'chapter' of a life sounds too linear. I don't know; there is something so plain about that metaphor, maybe because clichés are exhaustively boring.

What about a web? I think lives could be webs: delicate, scary but beautiful, all over the place, from a spider's butt.

Perhaps I care little for life as a book and moving on to the next chapter of your life because an event as big as graduating college doesn't feel like moving on to the next chapter. It feels like jumping out of one book and into another. It's like going from a young adult fiction novel to a hardcover nonfiction book. It feels weird.

But I've already committed to making this leap, so what next?

No, really, what comes next?

You see, the other assumption behind lives being books is that the ending has already been written. That's crazy! I don't even know if I believe in destiny or predestination. I find comfort in the idea that we can change any projected course of our lives, whether these courses have been instilled by family, religion, or societal pressure. But who knows? Whatever the truth, I like to think that the end of my life is not already written.

However, an aspect of my life is ending, and that is the part that includes Odyssey. I was aware of what Odyssey was before I decided to be part of my university's team. Pieces that saw the widest audiences were either controversial, listicles, or very broad yet relatable open letters. Writing stuff like that sounded like bottom feeder content. Then I wrote all three of those types of articles because I realized you have to start somewhere, and most start from the bottom. After gathering a sense of who my audiences were, my pieces branched out to satire writing, obscure listicles, music reviews, and attempts to replicate Clickhole articles.

I would call my time with Odyssey wild and occasionally frustrating. Writer's block is The Absolute Worst, and pieces you work harder on never gain as many views as the ones that you think of at the last minute and mold into a fully fledged article. I would have never expected my list about Dance Dance Revolution to attract almost 6,000 people.

The team also published some amazing work, and my other fellow Denison Odyssey writers always seemed to be more in tune with how to take a trend and make it your own than I was. We all wrote about different topics in varying formats, and watching their writing styles develop has to be one the top reasons why I loved being Editor-in-Chief.

Tomorrow, a Google calendar reminder will light up my room, reading "COMMENCE THE COMMENCEMENT," reminding me of the fact that I have to leave a place I called home for four years.

So, here's to the next...part of my life, because chapters are too cliché.

Cover Image Credit: Photo by JESHOOTS.com from Pexels

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The Truth About Young Marriage

Different doesn't mean wrong.
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When I was a kid, I had an exact picture in my mind of what my life was going to look like. I was definitely not the kind of girl who would get married young, before the age of 25, at least.

And let me tell you, I was just as judgmental as that sentence sounds.

I could not wrap my head around people making life-long commitments before they even had an established life. It’s not my fault that I thought this way, because the majority opinion about young marriage in today’s society is not a supportive one. Over the years, it has become the norm to put off marriage until you have an education and an established career. Basically, this means you put off marriage until you learn how to be an adult, instead of using marriage as a foundation to launch into adulthood.

When young couples get married, people will assume that you are having a baby, and they will say that you’re throwing your life away — it’s inevitable.

It’s safe to say that my perspective changed once I signed my marriage certificate at the age of 18. Although marriage is not always easy and getting married at such a young age definitely sets you up for some extra challenges, there is something to be said about entering into marriage and adulthood at the same time.

SEE ALSO: Finding A Husband In College

Getting married young does not mean giving up your dreams. It means having someone dream your dreams with you. When you get lost along the way, and your dreams and goals seem out of reach, it’s having someone there to point you in the right direction and show you the way back. Despite what people are going to tell you, it definitely doesn’t mean that you are going to miss out on all the experiences life has to offer. It simply means that you get to share all of these great adventures with the person you love most in the world.

And trust me, there is nothing better than that. It doesn’t mean that you are already grown up, it means that you have someone to grow with.

You have someone to stick with you through anything from college classes and changing bodies to negative bank account balances.

You have someone to sit on your used furniture with and talk about what you want to do and who you want to be someday.

Then, when someday comes, you get to look back on all of that and realize what a blessing it is to watch someone grow. Even after just one year of marriage, I look back and I am incredibly proud of my husband. I’m proud of the person he has become, and I’m proud of what we have accomplished together. I can’t wait to see what the rest of our lives have in store for us.

“You can drive at 16, go to war at 18, drink at 21, and retire at 65. So who can say what age you have to be to find your one true love?" — One Tree Hill
Cover Image Credit: Sara Donnelli Photography

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To The High School Senior Nearing The End Of This Chapter, Feel Free To Look Back

Trust me, you're going to want to.

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Right now you can't wait to leave. You can't wait for that fresh start, new friends, independence… the list is never-ending. But coming from someone two years removed from high school, please take it all in. Take in those last goofy times in class. All those fun car rides in the middle of the night with your friends where you laugh so hard you cry. Spending all day long with the friends you've known your whole life… remember how it feels in your heart. Enjoy graduation and take lots of pictures. Remember to always remain in the moment during all of these events. Don't let anything ruin it for you. That carefree feeling you have right now and will continue to have this summer will pass whether you believe it or not. Adulthood crawls in quicker than you think…

You will be left with the memories of what was, never to see or speak to so many people you once genuinely had so much fun with. High school is such a unique experience and I believe many of us take it granted because it is a necessity. We look at it as a chore because of mundane things like it being boring and having to wake up so early. In the moment we fail to see how fun it actually was. It is often only afterward that we realize just what we really had in those 4 years. Admittedly, I never thought I missed much of anything about high school, and I especially never thought I would. But here I am, two years later and I'm just realizing how easy I had it. High school was hard, but when I say the real world is harder, please take my words to heart. I am a firm believer that high school, in general, is a massive bubble.

Not to say that the bubble is bad. But the bubble will break, and it's more jarring to some than others. So don't let it impact you in a negative way, be prepared for its impact and conquer it! My point is, know that high school is not supposed to be the best four years of your life, but it is a time of your life where most people have the least worries, and that is something you can't get back. Worries and stress are subjective, so of course, we all thought our lives were over multiple times in high school, but we shortly realized that was not the case.

Your last teenage years should be taken in stride. Don't wish them away for older age, enjoy them. You'll never get them back, so you might as well stay in the moment.

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