On my last night of winter break, my family finally obliged to my relentless begging and set up our old, chunky video recorder to watch family home videos. I mean, who doesn’t love watching their cute miniature self running around with no cares in the world? I certainly do. But as much as I adore watching mini me and my minions (aka siblings) dancing with no cares in the world, it also brings rushing nostalgia back in the bad kind of way.
How is nostalgia bad, you ask? When it makes you realize how old you actually are and that you most definitely are not a cute, innocent, and carefree three year-old anymore. Watching my little self run down a hallway shrieking after my older sister only made me want to curl up into a ball, ignore life, and live at home forever. Unfortunately, the next morning would instead be spent driving five and half hours back to reality where I’d have to wake up at 8 a.m. the next day to attend class to eventually attain my undergraduate degree. When it’s put like that, it sounds a little overwhelming.
I know I’m not the only person in the world who is scared of growing up, or figuring out what you want to do with your life, or knowing what your future will be like. Hell, I haven’t even had a tax-paying job yet (although don’t worry Dad, I’m applying for some this week). Mind you, I have nannied a few times (which in my opinion requires a skill set unlike any tax-paying job can provide).
I remember over break, my dad asked me how it felt to be halfway done with my second year of college. And, honestly? It scares the crap out of me. Knowing that in a measly two more years, I’ll have to be qualified for a “real” job in the journalism work field, living on my own, paying off my student debts, and supporting myself scares me unlike anything I’ve ever known.
But instead of freaking out, I decided to do something else. Stop thinking. And no, I don’t mean become an airhead. I mean stop thinking about the future. Stop worrying. Just stop stressing about every facet of life ahead of you. Because the more you concentrate on that, the less you’re going to remember what’s happening around you right now. Just looking back on those videos of my three year-old self, I wished I could remember more times like that. Playing, laughing, having fun, feeling loved.
But the thing is, those are all things that I could be experiencing right now if I wasn’t so focused on the future and how I’m going to get there. You just have to take on life day by day. Instead of loathing the future and yearning for the past, I have to just appreciate every day I have here in the present. Especially here in college, where I’m surrounded by friends, my sorority, and a beautiful place to live for a limited time.
My parents are always telling me that college is the fastest & best four years of your life. I know my time here at Cal Poly is going to fly by just as fast as they say. So instead of flipping out over resumes, applications, and the general “responsibility” thrown at us as a part of growing up, let’s just remember today. Because even though you don’t notice it, you’re growing up every second without even thinking about it. And I want to make every second worth it.
See you guys in my next post!