I started college as soon as I finished high school. I thought I’d have a head start and get done early, right?
It took me a long time to finish. Stuff. Supporting myself, and family stuff.
But I loved school so much. I love college and I wanted to keep going. Years went by when I couldn’t take any classes.
It was a long deferred hope. And it was a cherished cherished cherished goal.
Until one year, circumstances aligned and I could go FULL TIME for a whole semester. Then that glorious moment when I realized if I went ONE MORE full time semester I could actually graduate.
That one year was the only time I had spend a full school year in college. All the night classes finally added up and I could spend a full year.
What a year! Studying and reading and carrying fat books. These teachers shared their knowledge with me, and I looked at the requirements in the handbook. I checked them all off and I GOT MY DEGREE.
The worst part about getting my bachelors’ degree? Being done.
I loved sitting in classes and learning new things!
What was I supposed to do now?
Seriously. I’d had this nurtured hope for so many years. Once I’d accomplished it I didn’t really know what to do.
I felt like I’d been travelling a paved road. It was steep, sure. But I always knew exactly where it was and how to travel it.
Once they handed me my diploma, the road ended.
It was the jungle, baby.
Now if I had somewhere I wanted to go, I had to break out a machete and cut a trail.
That’s a different thing altogether.
It’s very nice to have the trail already laid out. All the milestones and detours specified.
But going on my own? That’s a mess.
I’m not likely to get there directly.
And it’s an unanswered question of where “there” even is.
I’m finding it’s changing a lot.
Lately, I think it’s even more important to pay attention to what I am looking for in this path.
There are still other people in the jungle, and they will come alongside and pull me onto their path.
I can get swept into their orbit, and be influenced by their idea of where we are supposed to go.
Yet, in the end, I am the one who knows where I am aiming for. Other people can’t tell me what I want.
It’s better if I listen to where I want to go. I’m the only one who knows that.