My Quarter Life Crisis Changed Me For The Better

My Quarter Life Crisis Changed Me For The Better

Listen to "Quarter Life Crisis" by Olivia Lane while reading.

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Your twenties are hard, confusing, and one of the most difficult times of your life. Everyone seems to be on a different page: people are going to college/trade school, getting engaged, getting married, breaking up, having babies, moving, making career changes. No paths are the same, and it's okay to feel a little lost or confused for a while. You are supposed to make the wrong decisions.

Lately, this has been my future and what will make me the happiest. I thought it was being a teacher, but lately my heart and gut have been leading me in a different direction. When I decided to be an English major, teaching was the safe go-to in my mind, but I always wanted to work in publishing. Books have been in my life from the moment I was born, and I have always pictured myself working in a publishing house reading manuscripts, and that puts the biggest smile on my face. I always told myself to be safe and to make the safe choice, but what's life if you just stay safe? Life is messy, hard, and risky. If you don't take risks in life, you aren't living.

Big risk offers a big reward.

I'm on a different path and page than some of my friends, and that's okay. The finish line doesn't move; everyone goes at their own pace- and my pace right now has to be a little behind some of my friends. I'm making a change to my studies and trying to find out who I am as a person. My life seems to be falling apart, but falling together at the same time. I have the greatest friends and family who support me in everything I decide to do.

My dad has always told me to aim for the stars, and to never apologize for who I am. I am going to carve out the life I want for myself, filled with great people, great stories, and great adventures. I like having a plan, and that is why deciding to not be a teacher freaked me out. I know life kicks plans to the curb, but having a plan where I know my next step helps me remain calm.

My best friend smiled at me when I told her how I wasn't going to be a teacher and said, "I knew you'd be a great teacher, but I know you wouldn't have been happy doing it your whole life." Everyone I told about changing my concentration just smiled, like they knew it was going to happen.

My biggest fear was telling my parents. I didn't want them to be disappointed in me or disappointed that I wasn't sticking with a career I had decided on three years ago. But they weren't. My dad was hoping I was finally going to follow in my Mom's footsteps and be an RN. No Dad, blood and taking care of people is not for me. Either way, both of them just said, "do what makes you happy, and do your research, like you always do." I research everything I can before making a decision, and I know this is the career path I am meant to go down, and I look forward to working in the industry I have admired my whole life.

Life is difficult, beautiful, and messy, but it's one hell of a ride.

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Saying Goodbye To Freshman Year

"High School goes by fast, but college goes by even faster."
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“High School goes by fast, but college goes by even faster”, we’ve all heard it and probably all ignored it as well. I mean time is time. It moves at the same pace no matter what you’re doing right?

Nope.

High School is over, I’m now a freshman in college and it’s April. I’m sitting here in my dorm looking at all my clothes, and bins thinking, how in the hell will this all fit in my car again? It is crazy, I need to be thinking about all of this now because there is one month of my freshman year left, just one.

All I can keep thinking is how? Wasn’t it just last week that I moved into my cozy room at the end of the hall, or just yesterday that I ran home to two hundred beautiful new sisters? As much as it seems like yesterday, it wasn’t.

It was almost eight months ago that I stepped onto this campus as a freshman, now it is my last four weeks and they are jam-packed. From formal to finals I am in the home stretch of my first year of college. I just registered for my classes next semester, and can’t get it through my head that I will soon be a sophomore.

While walking around campus I still catch myself thinking, wow I am really here. I am a college student, at a school, I fall more in love with every day. So, how can I be a sophomore now when I feel like I just got here?

Yes, I still have three amazing years of college ahead of me, and I can’t wait to see what those years have in store in for me. But, I just can’t help but feel a little sad that I won’t be a freshman anymore. I won’t be the youngest in my sorority family, I won’t be coming back to a dorm every night.

Now don’t get me wrong, I am stoked to live in an apartment next year with my absolute best friends. And you definitely could have heard me saying “I am so over this whole dorm thing” once or twice this semester, but now I can’t help but see all the things I’ll miss.

Freshman year is just unique. You get this giant clean slate, a fresh start. And it is just waiting to see what you’ll do with it. It truly is a year of firsts. My first failure, the first time being on my own, my first time not knowing anyone in my classes. Yes, that can all be a lot to take on, I was terrified at the start of the school year. But before I knew it, I had a routine, I had friends, I had a life here.

And this life surpassed all my expectations. I have a home away from home. I have friends that I know will be my bridesmaids some day. I have experiences that I’ll never forget.

Now as I head back home for the summer I couldn’t be more excited to be with my friends there and my family. But, I also couldn’t be sadder to leave my friends here, even if it’s only for three months because they’ve become another kind of family.

Despite leaving freshman year behind, we have so many more memories to make whether it’s doing the Seminole chop in Doak, coordinating our Halloween costumes, or just chilling at the house. We’ve all come so far this year, and I can’t wait to see just how far we go. So bring it on Sophomore year, I’m ready for ya.

Cover Image Credit: Cameron Kira

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To The High School Graduating Seniors

I know you're ready, but be ready.

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Seniors,

I am not going to say anything about senioritis because I was ready to get out of there and I'm sure you are too; however, in your last months living at home you should take advantage of the luxuries you will not have in a college dorm. The part of college seen in movies is great, the rest of it is incredibly inconvenient. It is better to come to terms with this While you still have plenty of time to prepare and enjoy yourself.

Perhaps one of the most annoying examples is the shower. Enjoy your hot, barefoot showers now because soon enough you will have no water pressure and a drain clogged with other people's hair. Enjoy touching your feet to the floor in the shower and the bathroom because though it seems weird, it's a small thing taken away from you in college when you have to wear shoes everywhere.

Enjoy your last summer with your friends. After this summer, any free time you take is a sacrifice. For example, if you want to go home for the summer after your freshman year and be with your friends, you have to sacrifice an internship. If you sacrifice an internship, you risk falling behind on your resume, and so on. I'm not saying you can't do that, but it is not an easy choice anymore.

Get organized. If you're like me you probably got good grades in high school by relying on your own mind. You think I can remember what I have to do for tomorrow. In college, it is much more difficult to live by memory. There are classes that only meet once or twice a week and meeting and appointments in between that are impossible to mentally keep straight. If you do not yet have an organizational system that works for you, get one.

I do not mean to sound pessimistic about school. College is great and you will meet a lot of people and make a lot of memories that will stick with you for most of your life. I'm just saying be ready.

-A freshman drowning in work

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