Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about my future. Everyone in college does this. Everyone is always obsessing over what to major in, how to get a job after graduation, or finding out if they can really support themselves pursuing a specific career.
It’s easy for us to get caught up in what will pay the bills. I know it’s important to be practical, but I’m also beginning to realize that I’ve given up several things that I love doing in order to focus on what will allow me to graduate on time.
I used to be a performer. I loved acting and being on stage. I started dancing when I was three and most afternoons after school would be spent in classes. One summer I spent everyday in a dance workshop where the average workout consisted of 300 sit-ups! Just thinking about the pressure, I realize how dedicated I was to becoming better.
I began acting in plays when I was pretty young as well. One of my favorite memories was being Wendy in “Peter Pan.”
After the show, several little girls came up and wanted my autograph. I will never forget that feeling.
Being on stage made me feel like there was only that place where I belonged and nowhere else.
I sang in choir all through middle school and high school. I just loved exploring new roles through different songs or characters.
Somewhere along the way, I stopped everything. Events in my life resulted in me shying away from the limelight. I just didn’t want the attention anymore. I got to ULV and decided to pursue writing. I love being a journalism major, but sometimes I wonder.
Am I going to be a writer because it’s somewhat easy for me or because it’s what I’m meant to be doing? Am I going down this career path because I need to or because I want to?
I’ve gotten very good during my 22 years of justifying all the things I can’t do instead of trying to optimistically decide to achieve all of the things I can.
I can give myself dozens of excuses for why something can’t be done, even if it’s something I want very badly.
Although I think ULV does a great job setting students up with advisors to help them achieve their goals in school, I have never had someone sit me down and ask what really makes me happy.
The result is I’m nearing graduation, and I’m completely rethinking what I see myself doing in the next five years. I’m sure that this situation arises frequently in higher education.
I recognize that I am still very young to be planning the course of my entire future.
I’m still immature in so many ways. Still relying on my parents, still procrastinating, still hoping that things will fall in my lap without having to work for them.
So I guess I’m just wondering how we’re all supposed to figure it out. It doesn’t matter what you feel like you’re giving up – your career being an actor, your “Guitar Hero” high score, whatever.
I think if you feel like your dream has been taken away, you’ll never be truly happy.
So here’s good luck to everyone reaching for what they want – I hope we all get it.
Erin Konrad, a junior journalism major, is arts editor of the Campus Times. She can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.