I’ve gotten into the swing of working full time, as a girl who likes a routine I think it suits me. You feel a surge of pride when your hard work pays off, most especially when you work for a family-run business. Yet, even though I work full time I have started writing again, a hobby of which I have sorely missed.
To write something is one of the best feelings in the world. To create characters and worlds that are wholly from your imagination is an experience which should be praised and encouraged, no matter what the age or occupation. I get envious when I become lost in a good book; I become envious of their skill to capture the mind of the reader till they become consumed by the tale.
That is truly a gift.
Throughout my time at university my keeping of a diary took a backseat and although I did write in many other ways (even plucking up the courage to read one of my pieces at a Creative Writing Evening!) Finding the time (and motivation) to start writing again has reminded me of all the dreams I had as a young child to be a writer and, without be dramatic, has made me feel like me again after the chaos of the last year.
Thinking about it, I am still so young, (supported by the fact that I still get ID not matter where I go), and if I can still have the opportunity to choose what I want to be then maybe, just maybe, I will chase this dream…
It’s strange thing being back home again, it is like experiencing déjà vu every day. Although the house is different, the routine is not and since working full time my routine has become pretty standard. I wake up, go to work, come home from work, eat dinner, watch television and then go to bed, and when my alarm goes off at 8am the next morning it starts all over again. The student lifestyle is officially over. What a depressing reality.
Students go university to understand and learn independence, yet after the three years most of us end up back at home because we can’t afford to be independent anymore and that really is the sad truth about being a graduate. I sort of expected that when I finished university my perfect career would fall into my lap because I had worked hard in university, but obviously my naive dream has not come true. So after sitting on the floor of my kitchen for a good 10 minutes truly comprehending the reality of my graduate position I realised I needed a plan.
Being back home is a huge change, there is no denying it and for some it can be a little disheartening, but instead of being disappointed that I am back living with my parents I am going to spend this year doing what I would like to do. Every summer I have worked a part time job, then from September onwards I have been in an education of some sort. Since the age of five I have been in full time education and this September will be the first time in sixteen years that I haven’t had to go to school, and for me, that is quite a sad thought.
So instead of moping around I am going to start thinking about the future and I will spend this year doing what I have always wanted to do. Just as I did this for my final year at University I am going to set myself a ‘Graduate Bucket List’, or something with a less desperate title. Maybe I will learn a language, or study new subjects; read all the books I have collected from charity shops over the years; find new interests; go travelling to distant lands; take part in an internship; and maybe, just maybe, I will decide a plan for the future.
It has been just over a month now since I have officially finished University and I have an awful feeling that I am suffering from ‘Graduate Denial’. It really hasn’t sunk in that the whole experience is over, and I am still clinging to the hope that in September I will be returning to Cheltenham to continue my beloved student lifestyle of drinking all night, sleeping till noon, and reading books with words I don’t actually understand. In reality, however, I will be staying at home, getting up at eight and drinking only on the weekends. Fun. To be fair, since leaving so much has happened; I spent 5 days in the mud and rain at Glastonbury, finally turned 21 and after all the tears and hard-work I am now officially graduating with a 2.1 degree in History and Religion, Philosophy and Ethics.
So, after three of university, what do I do now?
It’s a strange thing not having a plan. I have been in full time education since I was 5, and now I don’t know if I am ready for full time employment. Full time employment.
That seems such a grown up reality, and it is a reality that is making me miss my student lifestyle even more. University teaches us so many things. It teaches us how to write essays, how to write an ‘employable’ CV, and how to make our rent money stretch, but now I have all those skills, what am I going to do with them? I don’t feel prepared for the real life and growing up is a petrifying prospect, but it is also an inevitable one. I guess I am going to have to wake up soon and face the future…