As a recent college grad, I did everything I was supposed to. Studied hard, got good grades, made real friends. And oh yeah, entered adulthood in the middle of a pandemic! So now what?
School for me was never crazy hard. Yes, I had to actually go to class and really study before tests. And of course there were challenging moments throughout my education. I subscribed to what I had been told my whole life: do well in school, get a degree, and you’ll find a great job. As long as I followed directions and stuck to the syllabus, I could achieve what was expected of me and what I expected of myself. And after 4 years, I graduated with a 4.0 GPA overall.
No one could have imagined how 2020 would actually turn out, and the situation us recent grads stepped into.
But as my fellow class of 2020 graduates can relate, the perfect end to our awesome college experience never came. One moment we were trying to live-up the last semester we would ever have together, and the very next our university told all students to leave for Spring Break and not come back.
I didn’t get a real goodbye with the friends I had made over the last four years. I didn’t get to work the last shifts with my coworkers I had grown so close to in three years. We didn’t have that final night out, that last walk around campus or those graduation week celebrations.
Instead we all went our separate ways, returned home, and looked toward the future (AMIDST A PANDEMIC!!). So now what??
Although it was a tough pill to swallow for my personal life, the impact on my professional career is even crazier. Now I’m searching for a job in the middle of one of the worst unemployment records this country has ever seen, all while still trying to find myself and ‘adult.’ We all did what we were told, but it’s wild how the world works out sometimes.
I can stay angry and sad and live in a world of self-pity with the way things turned out (and believe me, I’ve had my moments). Or I can choose to see the bright side.
Since Covid rocked our world, I got a sweet new gig with this awesome blog (the gatherist, have ya heard of it?). I’ve spent more time with my parents in the last two months than I have in the past four years. I traveled to Utah and Oregon (socially distanced of course), caught up with old friends, got into yoga. And I have had extra time to think about my future. Although I still don’t have a solid plan yet, I have come to appreciate the slower lifestyle Americans are living in quarantine. I’ve come to terms with the fact that everyone is on their own timeline, there’s no point in comparing yourself to everyone around you.
I just need to remind myself: stay active, set goals, and follow what makes you happy.
Everything works out for a reason.
If you missed Stephanie’s 2020 experience, check it out now!