Thursday, April 11, 2013

"The oldest of the young and youngest of the old"

Life As A Post Grad, Twenty Something
You finally graduate, thinking this is supposed to be the last hurdle to becoming a true adult in the professional world. You feel confident, educated and ready to take on your career.
 And then you get there. Just in time to passively watch your renowned status go from big man on campus to measly, inexperienced new hire. Find your way to the end of the line and start taking notes, young one.
The years of previous education feel trivial in your new context, where the leaders and top dogs have been working long before you were even officially a woman.(See Judy Bloom: Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret)
And there you are at the bottom of the totem pole. Freshman year: business world edition.
You envisioned yourself strutting as one with the big dogs, but come to find out you’re actually some kind of hybrid puppy. As Michele Kory said it best,
"We are the oldest of the young and the youngest of the old… I’m scurrying to finish up my childhood chapter while concurrently beginning to write my new adulthood section."
You thought you had life semi figured out, but then realize you were just wrapping up the first chapters in book 1. Boom JK Rowling hits you with a sequel, surprise: post grad life is an entirely new story.
Bright eyed and eager you have grand ideas on how your story should play out. But this round requires learning an entirely new skill set and strategy much more intricate and time consuming than you thought.
And all your ambitions and aspirations for your life feel like a race against time: how much coffee do you need to drink today to get it all done and succeed tomorrow? Up until this point in your life, there was always a time limit, a deadline when you needed to have it together. Learn everything before your test, turn projects in before the due date, get applications in for college, find an internship before the summer, line up a career before you graduate.
Despite no longer having finite time limits, the sense of urgency still feels present. You reflect on how many hours a day you now spend on someone else’s time. What do you really want out of your days and life anyways? Does anyone even know the answer to that question with certainty? Is it almost lunchtime? All these thoughts run through your little hybrid puppy brain.
So you pop in your headphones like a true twenty something because sometimes you need music to find clarity and get through the day. And direct from your Spotify shuffle, Billy Joel tells it to you straight.
"Slow down, you're doing fine. You can't be everything you want to be before your time."
TouchéBilly Joel, touché
Maybe trying to navigate these feelings of time sensitive uncertainty are just another rite of passage. Maybe there's a bigger picture that we just can't see yet. After all, we're just hybrid puppies. 
/( '.' )\
( UU )/ 

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