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“I don’t know what I’m doing”

“So, what are your plans after graduation?” Most college students have heard this line, but for seniors, it is often met with an “uhh….” or simply a blank stare. My go-to comeback is, “I don’t want to talk about it.”

But you know what? LET’S TALK ABOUT IT.

I’ve met several students who know EXACTLY what they are going to do after school. When I hear them talk, my heart can’t help but begin to race and my palms start to get a little sweaty. You would think it was a harmless little crush causing these feelings, but no. It’s the future.

“I don’t know what I’m doing. And it’s the not knowing that makes it interesting.” I came across this quote a few weeks ago in a New York Times article  about American composer, Phillip Glass. Though Glass was talking about music and not his post-grad plans, it calmed my nerves for the time being. So much that I made the quote my screensaver and refer to it whenever I feel a freak out coming on.

Think about your life for a second. Would you want to know every single detail about the future? It doesn’t matter because I’m going to tell you anyway.

After graduation, you will receive an offer to move to Kansas City and work for a marketing agency in an entry-level position. After five years of experience under your belt, a higher paying position opens up in Denver. A scared and nervous twenty-something, you move to a city where you don’t know a single soul. This new position is demanding and leaves you questioning your career choice, but alas you forge through, and after two years you are promoted to Marketing Director of the mid-range paper supply company. After becoming a bit more accustomed this new life, you meet a man named Simon, who you fall madly in love with. He asks you to marry him after two years of beautiful dating bliss and you move just outside of Denver, to a little suburb known as Englewood. You and your husband then have three children, Claire, Lauren and Aaron. They are totes adorbs, btw. From soccer games to backyard barbeques with the Meyer family on your quaint and quiet cul-da-sac, you watch as your children grow and go off on their own. After 27 years at the paper supply company, you retire and take off to fulfill your bucket list of road tripping to all 50 U.S. states, all the while collecting spoons from each one to complete your collection.

 No surprises. No curveballs. This is your future.

What I’m trying to get across is that most of what makes life interesting is the fact that we don’t always know what we’re doing. I’ve never been a college graduate, so I can tell you zilch about it. And while advice is wonderful, everyone’s pretty much winging it. There isn’t an owner’s manual for life and I wouldn’t want one if there were because an unknown future means you can do whatever you desire.  Yeah, it may be scary to take this next step after graduation and I know without a doubt there will be many challenges. But embrace the excitement of this new chapter. If you want to know more, you have to turn the page.

So don’t feel bad, Collegiettes™, if you can’t even map out your plans for the next weekend. Just breathe and know that whatever happens, every little thing’s gonna be alright. 

Brea Cudney is currently a senior at the University of Kansas, majoring in Communication Studies, with a minor in Journalism. Brea is an avid fan of The Office, addicted to pickles, obsessed with squirrels and a lover of all things crimson and blue. Rock Chalk!
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