Graduate college they said, it’ll be fun they said.
But DAMN life after college can be a whirlwind!
I graduated exactly 4 years ago today. Ironically, I found this very blog post in my drafts from- 2 YEARS AGO! I started this but never finished. I guess I didn’t find my voice completely enough to publish it.
Even more ironic? Every bullet point listed below is still true today. I’m still baffled by how different adulthood is from college life. It’s like the second I graduated I was thrust into adulthood without a how-to guide, without any warning. It was like being pushed off of a cliff and being expected to know how to fly.
My question to those who have been doing this for awhile is…. when does it feel normal?
Like I’m 26 and I still don’t want to be an adult. Do I like the freedom of it, and the feeling of making BIG strides and awesome new accomplishments? Absolutely! But damn, where is my mom when I need her! When I’m behind on laundry and haven’t even started dinner yet. When I’m so exhausted that I zombie mode it through work. And let me tell you friends- I don’t even HAVE KIDS YET! Good Lord help me.
I try to stay optimistic and happy all the time, but forgive me for being human, some things are just challenging! I know for damn sure that I’ve realized adulthood has come with a few realizations…..
-8AM is nowhere near an early time anymore
-Going to bed at 10 is the glory of all things glorious, and the thought of getting ready to go out on the town on a Wednesday night at that time is enough to make me fall asleep standing up on some days
-A relaxing Sunday is getting all of the household chores done, leaving me, and my house, feeling refreshed for the week ahead
-Since when is grocery shopping fun (most of the time)?
-Oh bills, right, I have those now
-AND DON’T EVEN GET ME STARTED ON STUDENT LOANS!
-Which job do I apply for? Do I qualify? What if I don’t? I double majored in college, certainly there is something out there
-Oh, you mean to tell me that my dream job doesn’t exist until I gain more than four years experience of college studies in my field?
-And let’s not even talk about that word metabolism. I’m only 26 for goodness sake! How can I see the results of a slowing metabolism already!
-And don’t get me started on hangovers. For anyone under 25 reading this. IT ALL CHANGES OVER NIGHT. Holy shit, I can’t imagine 30-year-old hangovers.
-Fewer true friends are better than a hundred fake ones- cliche I know, but totally true
-Surrounding yourself with like-minded people will be your saving grace on some days
So yeah, things are different once you graduate college. Weekends are no longer for partying, Thursday’s are no longer for “pre-weekend partying”, and Monday’s are no longer dreaded for an early 8AM class wake up call.
Rather, Monday’s are now for the go-getters. I might not be exactly sure where my career path will lead me in the next 5 years, or hell where my life will lead me, but I do know what I’m passionate about. So on Monday’s I GO-GET-IT. And on Tuesday’s, Wednesday’s, Thursday’s and so on. I wake up early, go to work, and help people achieve their fitness goals. And I do it day after day. But in between all of that I volunteer in animal rescue, I write these here blogs, I read, I walk my dogs, I binge watch New Girl with my husband, I grab drinks with friends, I travel and take in new experience, and I sweat like a mad woman at Orangetheory Fitness. I have no idea if any of those things will get me somewhere farther in my career in the future, or if they’ll impact my life in the future. But that’s not what it’s about. The Go-Getting, the life-enjoying, the self-improving, that make me damn happy right now. And right now is my favorite place to be.
The truth about finding your path after college:
it’s not actually about finding a path to walk on like everyone else. It’s discovering an unfinished path that looks crazy and curvy and all over the place. But the unknown in that path is what makes you see the potential in that path’s adventure, so you take it anyway. You pave that path along the way. And when the work gets too tiring to keep paving on your own. You kick back for a few, relax with a mimosa and give it to God to lay the next few stones for you.
I spent too much of my time focusing on how different life after college was compared to the 22 years before that I sometimes missed the beauty of it. Did I find spots where I felt financially depleted? Yep. Did I work jobs that made me want to pull my hair out every day? Yep. Was I struggling, exhausted, and emotionally depleted at times? Hell yes. But here I am. Standing tall, even if I still don’t have the slightest bit of clue what tomorrow might bring me. News flash, no one does. Not one single person. So in midst of the struggles somedays I remind myself of everything I’ve done, accomplished, and been to. And then I remind myself of my hopes and dreams. And I work for them, I work towards them, while simultaneously folding my husbands underwear and rescuing a dirty sock from my dogs mouth.
Adulthood will never feel normal. I’m convinced. There won’t be a moment where I’ll be like “ah so this is how to handle adulthood”, but that’s the beauty of it. I’ve decided on that very answer. It’s not supposed to be the same way for everyone. It’s not supposed to be the same every single year. But I’m here like “Hey look Ma I made it!”.
Adulthood if a fucking whirlwind.
But you can do it
….I whisper to myself as I go to sleep