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College is funny.

You graduate from high school, and that summer you are supposed to decide what you want to do for the rest of your life. You (or your parents if you are lucky) spend or borrow tens of thousands of dollars for you to get a degree and find a job in that field.

YAY! Welcome to your career!…at age 22.

Most people stay in that career for the rest of their working lives whether they like it or not because it is “what they went to college for.” Maybe 10 of the 247 people Facebook says I know are incredibly happy with their jobs and seem to want to wake up in the morning to go because it’s awesome and “F-YEAH, my job is so fulfilling!!!”

As a creative person, I am thankful that I went to college for something creatively challenging: “Advertising Design in Visual Communications.” That is what my degree says. I am lucky to have learned from amazing professors that started the transformation of my once “quiet girl” persona to be the sarcastic ass that I am today.

I was what I was supposed to be for a while, then I even became a “Senior” version of that title.

I don’t like titles very much. I have learned more from people 10 years younger than me than 10 years older than me.

I have had some wonderful experiences working for people. I have also found myself at jobs I thought I wanted that turned out to be some of the worst yet most amazing teaching experiences of my life thus far.

I have quit and I have been laid off. I have turned down jobs that paid ridiculous amounts of money because it didn’t feel right. I’ve been yelled at, called crazy, and been judged for not taking them.

I’ve made people proud along the way, and I’ve let people down.

I have let people convince me of things that I knew were wrong because they were my higher-ups.

I own my successes, and I have learned to own my failures.

When I first signed up for being a part of this blog, I thought we were supposed to write just about things in our city. You know, restaurants and fun things to do, but it has become something more important – 6 women FINDING THEIR WAYS in the cities they live in.

Sometimes you don’t figure out what you want to do for the rest of your life until you are 32…54…73, and that is OK.

I realized this year that no one really cares what you do, and no one cares who makes the stuff that they like. Being a part of something that makes or does great things does not matter unless YOU are happy doing it.

Happiness is everything.

Embrace the path it takes to get there. It will be littered with shards of glass and bear traps of instability.

Drag them, bleeding, until you shake free.

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