A (Nomadic) Post Grad Life

22 Jul

So, I am not going to lie, my senior year of college I was actually terrified of the real world. It was like the apocalypse: something unknown and vague that every adult who was living it went more than enough out of their way to warn me about how quickly it was approaching.

“You know, in the real world you will have to learn this…”

“This would never happen in the real world…”

“The real world is an awful place! Get ready!”

That’s just a rough idea of some of the things repeated to me by virtually everyone less than a year ago. Everyone who was envious of our youth. Jealous that on most weekdays my biggest concern is not my 9-to-5, kids or bills, but the fact that I am secretly praying no one realizes I’m wearing the same clothes again because I ran out of laundry quarters or that I am dying in my Friday 9am because Gill’s Bar has once again kicked Jessayyy’s ass the night before. 

Those were my college concerns.

Now, here I am, months later with a $200k ‘Media Communication’ degree in hand, moving across the world to do something I spent only 4 months preparing for instead of 4 years. Am I crazy? Lazy? Wasteful? A genius? An evil genius? Who knows.

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(Above: The tradition of all RWU seniors jumping into the school fountain the night before graduation. Rough life, I know.)

But let me tell you, so far the real world is disappointing. Disappointing in the same sense as if Mozart were reincarnated and you got to sit front row listening to him play symphonies…and then I came out after with my ‘Joy of First Year Piano’ book to struggle through Pagoda Tree. That kind of disappointing. NOTHING COMPARES TO PERFECTION!

And you, my fellow hawks, know that was exactly what we had! 

You wanted a gym? We had two story athletic heaven! You wanted food? We had a stir fry oven, quasadilla station and a freakin’ annual steak & lobster night when the school spent thousands of my tuition dollars to ensure you had the prime cut of ribeye! Don’t even get me started on location. Roger Williams is smiling down from a religiously-free heaven upon his beautiful university which is situated in prime beach front real estate! The Rog is a pretty nice place!

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 (Above: I lived here! Beautiful Bristol, RI)

Do you know how I know this? Because the real world told me so! Sutton is BORING. Gyms charge you $20 when you lose your pass, dinner is whatever food my ravenous wolf pack of brothers & dad don’t eat, and as for scenery…the inside of Dunkin Donuts hasn’t really been cutting it. My post grad life is so monotonous. 

Cue the people who are now automatically thinking/saying “That’s the real world, college is over!”

Yes, I know this…but does that mean that the fun has to end completely just because actual responsibility is introduced into my life? 

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(Above: Hi, I’m Ms. Graves & I will be teaching your children soon…)

I say NO! Sure, we all technically have to grow up, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that we all have to grow old too! I may no longer be able to do all the crazy things that I did in college now that I am in ‘the real world’, but adult life doesn’t have to be so damn adult. 

I’m lucky though, because I found the loophole! I am leaving for Prague exactly one week from tomorrow, and cannot wait. So many of my friends already have adult jobs, and are entering the real world. For a while, deep down I felt like pursuing the TEFL Worldwide program was me running away from reality. I was terrified of unemployment…living in my old room, Mama G nagging at me to make my bed, rejected applications & wearing a brown apron for the rest of my life. I didn’t want to be stuck. So I took control. I chose my own fate. And guess what? You can too!

Just because I get to live in a town full of castles doesn’t mean that my world is any less real than your 9-to-5. I will have a job, rent, bills, and may very well be going hungry some nights. I will be overwhelmed, homesick and lonely. But I think that’s what’s supposed to happen. Just like fledglings take a while to learn to fly, recent college graduates stumble a few times too before we find our way. 

But we all eventually do 🙂 

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 (Above: my family & I at Roger Williams University graduation, May 2013)

Actually, that’s what I think this mysterious ‘real world’ truly is. It’s the (sometimes scary) realization that no one is holding your hand anymore and you are completely on your own. But you can get through it alone. Because you are so much stronger and capable than you think. You learn how to cook other food besides Ramen and how to save money for more than just liquor store runs.

…but as for themed parties, pshh, no matter how old I get I will ALWAYS go all out!

JG 🙂

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