RIP summer break, long live the Fall semester.
And RIP me... Or long live me, depends how well this semester goes.
This is undoubtedly the hardest semester of my life. I'm taking 19 hours of classes (15 is normal), involving no less than three semester-long projects. Plus running a VR booth at conventions, running a club, and running 2-3 miles per day..
Just thinking about it all is overwhelming. This last year of school feels like the end of the world.
Since high school, through college, everything has been leading up to college graduation. It's been my ultimate goal, consuming my attention for over seven years.
But that's backward. Undergraduate school isn't the end , it's the beginning. While cliche, what I need is a paradigm shift
Just because I haven't the faintest idea where I'll be in a year doesn't mean I can't enjoy getting there. If you fear the uncertainty, it becomes the enemy, and you'll never want to go outside your comfort zone. Relish the uncertainty, and it becomes both a challenge and an adventure.
In truth, everything since first grade has been preparing me for life, not just for college. It's not the end of the world, it's more like the final boss battle of this phase of life-- it requires the most effort, and it also has the highest payoff if you do it right (and grave consequences if done poorly.)
Speaking of the final boss, it takes loads of effort to even get to the final boss. In that time, you take on all the minor challenges and grinding in order to get to the part that really matters, the climax.
After years in school, I've gotten all of the "grinding" through required classes out of the way, and now I have a full year to take on the challenges that really matter. While it's a metric ton of work, this is the work that I want to be doing. This is the academic equivalent of a dream job - lots of electives, lots of projects. While that looks different to different people, reaching that "dream job" is something to be proud of, and something to be grateful for.
Today, someone asked me if I know everyone on campus. While I'm terrible at names, I literally couldn't count the friends I've made through classes, clubs, shared meals, and random happenstance. Neighbors, friends, and colleagues all blend together in college. It's even helpful having a roommate who keeps me sane and prevents me from taking life too seriously. As someone who can feed off the energy of others, I thrive on social interaction, despite being an introvert.
There's a lot to love about humans when you get to know them. Even still, the most baffling thing is not when people are in a place they don't like, it's when people don't do anything to get out of that place.
My heart goes out to moonlighters, it's a hard life. It's truly a blessing being able to spend my days working on interactive projects like this, I'll try not to waste it.
- If you take action to get where you want to be, you're a winner.
- If you complain when you do get what you want, you're a whiner.
- To quote Dr. Eggman, "Chaos is the constant." Life is always changing. (someone else may have said it first...)
Despite the change, old wisdom is still invaluable:
- Sleep, eat, take care of yourself
- But don't be self-centered, it leads to taking ones self too seriously and becoming a jerk.
- Through hard work and prayer, nothing is impossible.
- Through intense laziness, anything can be impossible.