I am traveling now so that regret doesn't get me later

I am traveling now so that regret doesn't get me later

There is no room for "next time" or regrets

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Over a year ago I chose to go to Thailand for my Spring Break. Not only did I meet my grandpa and his wife for the first time, but I lived with them. And although it was just a week, it changed my entire plan of how I wanted things to be for myself after college. I not only traveled alone, but I knew I was about to spend a week with family and people I have never met before. Not only did the time I spent with them change my life but the people throughout the five different airports did as well.

Now a year and four months later, I am going back. Everything in my life right now is exactly the way I want it. I have an amazing family who will be so hard to leave, I have graduated from college, I have become friends with the most beautiful people, and I have met a man who has shown me what love is. Although it has broken me down the past few months knowing I am about to leave all that is good in my life behind, for the time being, I am still doing it.

But why? Why now and not later? Why would I leave everything I didn't think I would once have for something I am so unsure of?

Regret. I refuse to wake up in two years and regret not going across the globe because a guy wants me to be with him. I refuse to stay because of family and friends. I refuse to wake up for a 9-5 job wishing I took the opportunity to live in Thailand. I refuse to worry about all that comes after I come back. I refuse to regret not taking the chance to travel. I simply refuse to let myself stay in America and do what is normally expected of a 21-year-old graduate when I have the opportunity to go outside of what is comfortable for myself.

And of course, I do think "what if?" What if I come back and those friends are no longer my friends? What if I come back and this guy has moved on? What if I come back and am forced to live with my parents because finding a job is that hard? What if I cannot get into graduate school? What if I become a failure? Or, what if I am not meant to come back?

These questions and more sit with me every day and have for the four months building up to me leaving. They have become what has kept me up at night along with the excitement of not knowing. I am such a control freak and having absolutely no control has left me anxious but so thrilled for what is next. And truthfully, regret keeps me going. Regret reminds me that everything that is mine will be mine when I come back but all that I do not take now will not be mine later.

Jobs, love, opportunities, friends, and family; It will all be right where I left it if it is meant for me. But now, as I have the opportunity to move across the country with only having to buy my plane ticket, that is what is meant for me now. As I get older and become more settled, I might never get this opportunity again.

Cover Image Credit:

Sylwia Bartyzel

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10 Things Someone Who Grew Up In A Private School Knows

The 10 things that every private school-goer knows all too well.

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1. Uniforms

Plaid. The one thing that every private school-goer knows all too well. It was made into jumpers, skirts, shorts, scouts, hair ties, basically anything you could imagine, the school plaid was made into. You had many different options on what to wear on a normal day, but you always dreaded dress uniform day because of skirts and ballet flats. But it made waking up late for school a whole lot easier.

2. New people were a big deal

New people weren't a big thing. Maybe one or two a year to a grade, but after freshman year no one new really showed up, making the new kid a big deal.

3. You've been to school with most of your class since Kindergarten


Most of your graduating class has been together since Kindergarten, maybe even preschool, if your school has it. They've become part of your family, and you can honestly say you've grown up with your best friends.

4. You've had the same teachers over and over

Having the same teacher two or three years in a row isn't a real surprise. They know what you are capable of and push you to do your best.

5. Everyone knows everybody. Especially everyone's business.

Your graduating class doesn't exceed 150. You know everyone in your grade and most likely everyone in the high school. Because of this, gossip spreads like wildfire. So everyone knows what's going on 10 minutes after it happens.

6. Your hair color was a big deal

If it's not a natural hair color, then forget about it. No dyeing your hair hot pink or blue or you could expect a phone call to your parents saying you have to get rid of it ASAP.

7. Your school isn't like "Gossip Girl"

There is no eating off campus for lunch or casually using your cell phone in class. Teachers are more strict and you can't skip class or just walk right off of campus.

8. Sports are a big deal

Your school is the best of the best at most sports. The teams normally go to the state championships. The rest of the school that doesn't play sports attends the games to cheer on the teams.

9. Boys had to be clean-shaven, and hair had to be cut

If you came to school and your hair was not cut or your beard was not shaved, you were written up and made to go in the bathroom and shave or have the head of discipline cut your hair. Basically, if you know you're getting written up for hair, it's best just to check out and go get a hair cut.

10. Free dress days were like a fashion show

Wearing a school uniform every day can really drive you mad. That free dress day once a month is what you lived for. It was basically a fashion show for everyone, except for those upperclassmen who were over everything and just wore sweat pants.

Cover Image Credit: Authors Photos

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I Never Wanted To Go To College

I never wanted to go to college, but I stayed because I learned some things along the way - who knew.

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I went because it's what the family expected from me. It's a step towards a successful career path. And obviously because it's a natural progression from high school. But deep down I never wanted to go because I really found no reason to be there.

In my view if you weren't going into traditional career fields, going to college was an expensive long shot. I was also careful to pay attention to all the people that attended college only to work in fields different from what they originally studied.

I was wary but didn't care so I don't put much thought into it. I applied to a handful of schools and attended the one that was more convenient. Once there I found the whole process disheartening.

I relied heavily on financial aid and felt the interaction and choices I was making were more transactional then enriching. It was just like high school again. Go to class take notes, read the book take the test, rinse and repeat until you get the degree.

That was until I fell into a philosophy class that was really challenging. It was challenging in a way that I hadn't been experienced in a while. I was having trouble understanding the material but desperately wanted to learn it. I read books over and over until the concepts were crystal clear. It also helped that I had a teacher who was passionate about the subject as well.

It kind of changed my whole approach to picking classes. Sure I'd visit the advisors and get their take on how to follow the quickest path to graduation. But I also wanted to be intentional with my course selection and take classes where I would learn as much as I could in topics that interested me.

Whether or not they fit my major. That's the only thing that made going to school worth it. Learning topics that change how I approach life and challenged my thinking. Then I was growing intellectually and not just checking boxes for a degree.

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