One of the first things I was asked after my college graduation was, “so what are you going to do next?” My answer… “Well I’m about to go have dinner with my family and friends that’s about it.” What else was I going to say? I wasn’t going to lie because there was no need. I had no idea what was going to happen next. Don’t get me wrong I looked at some graduate schools and applied to some jobs, but I had no real answer. I had no idea and me not having any idea stressed me out even more. However I learned to cope, deal with it and try to move on. I instantly threw myself into work until about 7 months later when it was time to begin payment on my student loans, the stress that I thought I had locked away only began to resurface. Not only was I clueless, but now I was going to be clueless and in enough debt to cover a swimming pool.
Little by little I started looking into things I wanted to study and set my sights on going back to school part time. Once I settled on majoring in Occupational Therapy, I thought for sure this was what I was going to do. I just knew it was. However, that was not the case. Left and right God kept throwing me signs until one day I decided to stop ignoring them and face my truths. I was forcing myself back into school for all the wrong reasons. So instead of starting the semester with my new classmates, I decided to pack my bags to start a new life. Not necessarily a new one, but the one I was blocking myself from enjoying. I set my goal, I applied myself and within two weeks I was gone. I’m not going to lie, I didn’t quite plan everything out how a normal person should, but dammit if it wasn’t then, then it was going to be never.
With the help of my mother, and a lot of God’s blessings, my life went from stressing to just seeing what happens next. This may sound crazy to a nonbeliever, but once I stopped worrying so much my faith grew a lot stronger. To this day I really can’t tell you how I knew, but I knew and I still know, everything is going to be ok. Once I stopped dwelling on that question of “what are you going to do next”, life has been a little bit easier. I have no idea what I’m going to do next. I HAVE NO IDEA! I’ve learned to live with not knowing for right now and just enjoy being 23. Who said I HAD to have a Bentley or Mercedes by 23? Why can’t I enjoy the fucking Jeep I have or my apartment that the bedroom in alone is bigger than my cousin apartment in Manhattan? I blame Instagram and Twitter for that shit.
Growing up I just knew my life was going to be the way I planned it out to be at 16. There was no way I was going to steer away from my step-by-step roadmap. I was tripping then. If I knew then, what I know now, I would have told myself to be better. Ease up on myself and to just breathe. I remember telling myself if it wasn’t going to happen for me by 30 then it wasn’t going to happen. And that was for everything, kids, my career and marriage. Not only was I trying to sell myself short, but I was also putting an unrealistic time stamp on my life that was not going to do anything but make me miserable later on. I’m not saying forget your dreams and be a bum, but what I am saying is I am 23 and I have dreams, I am ambitious, I am a hard worker, and I am motivated. I’m just not 100% sure what I want to do right now at this moment.
I laugh when people tell me “you’ll find your niche” or “you’re just young right now, you’ll know by 30.” Not because I think they’re crazy or telling me lies, but because even in those moments of self-doubt, there are people still rooting me on. I admire and adore those who know exactly what they want to do and have found their niche right out the gate. However as for me, I have no worries that it’s not going to happen and I have no doubts. But what I will say is, for the moment, I am ok with not knowing. God willing, I will figure it out by 30. –XO J
“Find what you love to do and let it consume you.”