This Is What It Feels Like

David V DartelIt’s been quite a bit of time since I last wrote on this thing, huh. What’s strange is that it is not for lack of things to say because, let’s be frank, anyone who has ever met me knows I’m never without words. If I’m being totally truthful, I can’t say I’ve been too busy – because I could’ve found time to write here and there. I will say, however, that I don’t think I wanted to hear or read what I would have written in those stolen moments.

Upon graduating nearly three months ago, my day-to-day has taken a complete one-eighty. Gone are the days when I trekked to and from Grand Central, the pages and pages of notes procured in dozens of lecture halls have been trashed, and the hard-earned, yet still imaginary, paystubs of interning have been bid adieu. Now, my Monday through Friday consists of working nine-to-six at a desk. My weekends are suddenly free game, my paychecks are suddenly gargantuan in comparison to what they once were (yet they seem to disappear just as quickly…), and if I stay awake past eleven pm, it’s considered a “late night.” What’s more is that my days feel like the crawl by but the weeks seem to race faster than light. I’ve blinked and my summer has all but disappeared, without so much as a good suntan to remember it by.
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I know it is such a “first world problem” to say that I’m afraid of monotony but I also know that the root of my woes right now lies in that fear. I’ve spent years being occupied by honors classes, textbooks, internships, part-time jobs, club meetings, family issues, friendships, and everything in between. The boredom and monotony I had during those times was welcomed and encouraged. Now, my schedule is ridden with responsibility and the pressure to “act like an adult.” I’ve been lucky so far and staving off the humdrum routine has been easy because I have a boyfriend who enjoys doing a lot of the same weirdo things I like. I’ve followed up my workdays with trips to oyster bars, plays, happy hours, long dinners, craft beer festivals, and walks around Manhattan. I’ve taken day trips to the East End, a week sojourn in Costa Rica, and even thrown a party or two. It’s been a very eventful summer. Sadly, il boyfriend left for medical school so the constant activity has come to a halt. Now, let’s not be dramatic, I’ve already made plans with friends and have more plans to do fun things with them as well but I can’t deny the fact that I will suddenly have a lot more hours at my disposal. Thus far, I’ve made a list of the things I plan on doing with my newly acquired time – things ranging from getting my butt back to the gym to reading the books from the three Amazon carts I recently (and impulsively) purchased to scrapbooking to blogging more (yay? yay!).

To know I have all of these things to do is both exciting and mildly depressing (…am I the only one who still enjoys a good scrapbook?). I can’t help but feel like going through the motions of these activities is so far removed from when I did these same activities during winter and summer breaks from school. Before, they were things I did to kill time and keep myself entertained between hanging out with friends and family, that is, until the semester started again. Until life picked up in full-swing again. When friends, family, school, interning, and a part-time job were what it meant to have a fulfilling schedule. But what about now when there is no school bell waiting to ring me back to class? Am I to while away my days at work, come home to my meaningless hobbies, go to sleep, and repeat every single day until I die? I’m being wildly overreactive, (right? of course), but you get the point.

Niki Duffy Drawing

Really, I just hate not having some semblance of what my next year is going to look like. Or, hell, even just my next month. It seems absolutely insane to have children go through a structured school system for all of their lives and then at twenty-one, push them out of their nests and expect them to fly. In theory and on paper, we’re ready for this big bad world but even as a “successful” graduate, with a full-time job in Manhattan, and still living at home – I don’t feel ready.

The world has millennials coined as the “Peter Pan generation” and I can’t help but think that that term is correct. As a milennial, I will be the first to say I don’t want to grow up and become a miserable adult. Being the working woman-child I am now, I am surrounded by adults who have many regrets and drooped shoulders from the weights they’ve carried and I don’t envy them. And maybe that makes me sound entitled – that I think I’m too good to have to suffer like they did. I don’t think I’m too good to suffer because I know that I will have moments when I am miserable and life sucks and I won’t be able to fix it completely; I welcome those moments because that’s part of living. I do, however, wholeheartedly believe that those will not be my majority moments. I cannot agree to sit at this desk, every Monday through Friday, for the rest of my life watching things happen to other people.

Being twenty-two is weird.


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