I Switched My Major 1 Time & I'm Still Not Sure If I'm Happy

I May Have Only Switched My Major One Time But I'm Still Not Sure If I'm Happy

I'm just really lost about almost everything.

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I've written way too many articles about my major and I have some conflicting things. I also want to mention that I wrote an article titled "I Didn't Pick My Major, It Picked Me", and while this is still true and I still love my major, I'm just not sure or happy with everything. Let me explain, and start out by saying

I have mental illnesses.

I'm not going to go too much into detail about what, but the biggest one is depression. I get depressed about a lot of things, pretty much everything, so it's no surprise that college can be depressing for me as well. A big hit to my depression when it comes to college is that

I do not think I am smart enough to be here.

What do I mean by that, you may ask. In short, I feel really lost. But you're not here to read the short version. The long version is that I'm a junior in college, which means that I'm in my 3000 level and 4000 level courses. I feel incredibly behind my peers. For example, I'm currently in a class called Critical Theory where we study theorists such as Freud and Derrida. My peers and professor have these incredible discussions about ideology, interpolation, phenomenology, and ideas of post-truth. I can't contribute in the slightest because I have no idea what is going on. Obviously, I had classes leading up to this course but I still feel as though I went in blind with zero preparation. Is this the university's fault? Is it my fault? Regardless, I feel this guilt of it being my own fault. Most of my classes this semester are like this. There are references to Derrida in required reading and assignments that need me to use a theorist's eye to assess novels. I still feel so incredibly lost.

This may be the lamest reason for choosing to be an English major, but I picked it because I love books and I love to read. I'm currently reading "The Marriage Plot" by Jeffrey Eugenides for a course and it says "English was what people who didn't know what to major in majored in" (pg 21) and I found myself thinking "Am I one of those people? Because I can't do math and science is boring and history is too dry? Am I fooling myself into thinking I am more than that?" Maybe I am, but at this point, I don't really have any other choice. I've been at this university since 2015 with graduation looking like it could be in the summer of 2021. Switching again isn't a viable option because I have spent too much time and money becoming an English major. Even if I could switch, there's nothing else I could even fathom doing.

Sometimes I wonder if I should drop out.

It's not because I'm not motivated; the fact that I'm still here pushing through these thoughts should prove that, but I can't help questioning it. I've questioned it a lot the past year, especially after losing so many people in my life this past year. I think of the people I graduated high school within the sticks, seeing them stuck in a small town with no job opportunities and living awfully, and I try to convince myself that I'm doing this to be better than being stuck and I remind myself how incredibly blessed I am for this opportunity. However, it's really difficult to stay most days.

This may be cheesy or possibly idiotic, but the thing that honestly keeps me going through this doubt is my mom. I watch her sacrifices, her struggles, and how she overcomes the impossible. I see her working her butt off for me and for her. I see her being the most selfless human on this crumbling planet and I keep pushing in college. I want to succeed and get a well-paying job so that I can make sure that she's taken care of since she's always made me her priority. Maybe it's dumb to force something I don't feel is working, but I don't care at this point. I'm too determined for her to give up.

Another thing is that I think about "What in the world am I going to do with this degree?" I'm an English major, what am I going to do? I have no idea, I have zero plan. I keep wondering what my options even are. I keep telling myself "Well, I like my classes so I must be on the right track." This was true, until this semester. My courses this semester are sucking that optimism from me but they're required so I don't really have a choice. I'm just... lost.

You may have guessed it, but I was selfish and wrote this article to vent. That's the purpose of Odyssey: It's a place to share your voice. I know some friends who are in the same mindset, so maybe this will help them feel less alone. Maybe there are others that I don't know/ aren't that close within the same boat. Whatever it may be, I'll keep pushing on.

I know I'm very fortunate to be in college getting a higher education, I know this. I try not to take that for granted, but I know I fail. I know that this is just my path in life, even if I don't understand it right now. I also know that I've worked harder for this degree than most of my peers, due to my mental health. I know that, when I graduate, it'll feel so sweet and so worth it. But for right now, I'm in this mental pit. I'm trying my absolute best through it all and still trying. I still write my papers, complete my homework, and go to class. I allow myself to skip my classes one time a month to keep myself mentally sane and my grades up, and so far it works for me. All will be well one day, I just have to tell myself to take it one day at a time.

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To The Friends I Won't Talk To After High School

I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.
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Hey,

So, for the last four years I’ve seen you almost everyday. I’ve learned about your annoying little brother, your dogs and your crazy weekend stories. I’ve seen you rock the awful freshman year fashion, date, attend homecoming, study for AP tests, and get accepted into college.

Thank you for asking me about my day, filling me in on your boy drama and giving me the World History homework. Thank you for complimenting my outfits, laughing at me presenting in class and listening to me complain about my parents. Thank you for sending me your Quizlets and being excited for my accomplishments- every single one of them. I appreciate it all because I know that soon I won’t really see you again. And that makes me sad. I’ll no longer see your face every Monday morning, wave hello to you in the hallways or eat lunch with you ever again. We won't live in the same city and sooner or later you might even forget my name.

We didn’t hang out after school but none the less you impacted me in a huge way. You supported my passions, stood up for me and made me laugh. You gave me advice on life the way you saw it and you didn’t have to but you did. I think maybe in just the smallest way, you influenced me. You made me believe that there’s lots of good people in this world that are nice just because they can be. You were real with me and that's all I can really ask for. We were never in the same friend group or got together on the weekends but you were still a good friend to me. You saw me grow up before your eyes and watched me walk into class late with Starbucks every day. I think people like you don’t get enough credit because I might not talk to you after high school but you are still so important to me. So thanks.

With that said, I truly hope that our paths cross one day in the future. You can tell me about how your brothers doing or how you regret the college you picked. Or maybe one day I’ll see you in the grocery store with a ring on your finger and I’ll be so happy you finally got what you deserved so many guys ago.

And if we ever do cross paths, I sincerely hope you became everything you wanted to be. I hope you traveled to Italy, got your dream job and found the love of your life. I hope you have beautiful children and a fluffy dog named Charlie. I hope you found success in love before wealth and I hope you depended on yourself for happiness before anything else. I hope you visited your mom in college and I hope you hugged your little sister every chance you got. She’s in high school now and you always tell her how that was the time of your life. I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.

And hey, maybe I’ll see you at the reunion and maybe just maybe you’ll remember my face. If so, I’d like to catch up, coffee?

Sincerely,

Me

Cover Image Credit: High school Musical

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Writing Saved My Sanity

Write it all down when you can't talk to anyone.

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I love writing.

I have since elementary school, and I've dreamed of becoming a published author. I started off writing stupid plays in elementary school, then it grew it almost writing a full-blown novel in middle school. I have no idea where that thing went to. It was all notebook paper and bad writing. In high school, my writing was kinda pushed to the side so I could focus on school. When I entered college, I started writing small poems about my now ex-boyfriend.

I was scared to express myself to him sometimes, the intensity of my feelings for him scared me. So instead of telling him, I wrote them down. When I tried to share them with him, he hated it. He thought writing down feelings was weird and creepy. So I didn't share anything else with him. When we finally broke up for good, everything just poured out of me. What I couldn't express verbally, I wrote or typed out.

I always have ideas flowing through my head. They never cease and I wouldn't want them to. Writing gives me an escape, from stress, work, school, or fights. It gives me a place to vent and to be open with everything. This is a reason I love writing for Odyssey, not only has this place brought me amazing friends but revived my love for writing. I'm never without my notebook anymore, I'd get distracted in class by an idea and have to write I think then and there.

I love sharing my more personal writing with close friends, especially my poems as of late. I found that I have a voice for young women who find themselves in a toxic relationship much like mine was. I want to speak out and show them that you can grow from the bullshit. It may take some time, but you will be better.

Writing saved my sanity. It allows me to express myself without having to use my actual voice. Anyone who knows me, knows I hate public speaking. I tend to psych myself out leading up to it. My current projects include writing for Odyssey every week, I'm in the process of trying to continue my short stories, and I'm excited to announce that I'm currently working on my very first poetry book!

Writing has given me so much, and I'm so looking forward to making a career out of something I love so much.

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