Side Effects

This week I’ve been frazzled. This post is currently the eigth tab open on my Chrome browser, but on Monday there were four or five others. Earlier this week, I walked into class and a friend of mine diagnosed me with stage 4 Senioritis, a condition common among late-term college students.

Sure, it makes homework a little harder, future planning pretty stressful, and turns every conversation into “so what are your plans after graduation?” But there are some positive side effects too. Excitement. Motivation. Figuring out who you are.

So what are my plans after graduation? Honestly, I can’t be sure. I began the semester completely sure I was headed for grad school, applying for jobs would just be a safety net in case it didn’t work out right away, but as I started thinking more about it, I’ve been a student for about seventeen years now, it feels like a good time to try something different.

The question on my mind metamorphosed into, “so what do you want to do?” and once again, I was stumped. Something in my field, I guess. Something that puts the knowledge I’ve accumulated to use. Something I’m passionate about. I thought about my parents, because they’re both successful, but also enjoy their work. They’re kind of my heroes. My mom has worked in a lot of different places, but decided she wanted to work in an association serving her local community, helping to solve problems that affect her neighbors every day. She handles finances for a group that tackles gaps in access to healthcare brought on by income inequality. My dad has dedicated most of his life to the healthcare community, making it easier for doctors to focus on caring for patients. But, when I really think about it, my passion is making other people happy. Suddenly, the world felt like a map I could just throw a dart at. I could make people happy anywhere. Sure, it would feel cool to say “I’m working here and changing the world,” but sometimes the world is changed when you bring a smile to a few people. So I’m optimistic I can make a difference wherever I go.

At these times when I’m thinking so much about where I’m going, I like to pause and take stock of where I am: watching I-90 traffic and the commuter rail buzz by before the sun has even come up. My kitchen has two windows, one looks right at campus, right past the engineering buildings and Warren Towers to the two spires of the College of Arts and Sciences and School of Theology that surround Marsh Plaza, my place of serenity, my home base. The other window faces downtown Boston. The skyline is often obscured by a thick layer of fog, like it is this morning, so sometimes the buildings are difficult to see, but even at seven in the morning there are enough lights on to promise me they’re all there. One of my windows reminds me why I came here, something I’m proud of, everything I’ve accomplished so far. The other shows me my future, cloudy at times, big, bright and kind of intimidating. But it looks pretty good to me.

One Comment

Kasey Shultz posted on November 8, 2017 at 3:54 pm

I love this

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