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Why I’m Both Terrified and Excited to Graduate College

Change isn’t something that everyone is comfortable with, but it’s something that comes frequently throughout life. We all enter different stages of life that will bring new experiences, new people and new opportunities. When I enrolled in college, I started an entirely new chapter of my life where I made new friends, figured out what I wanted to do with my life, learned information to prepare me for my career, fell in love, experienced heartbreak, learned how to live on my own and experienced my fair share of breakdowns.

College overall was a great experience, but now that I’ve been here for four years, my experience is about to end and I’m going to be thrust into the real world of adulthood. Leaving college means that I will have to provide for myself, find a job, figure out where I want to live and potentially have to leave behind everything and everyone that I know. The idea of graduating fills me with terror because I have no way of knowing what awaits me after receiving my diploma, but, in a way, the unknown is also exhilarating because I know the opportunities that await me are endless. 

It’s always scary to leave what makes you feel comfortable such as the environment that has come to feel like home, the friends you’ve made and the family that supports you. However, there comes a time where you have to do what makes you happy and pursue the dreams that you have for yourself.

When I imagined my future career, it always felt like something that was far off in the distance, but now it’s suddenly right here within my grasp. The place I will end up working, the place I will end up living, the people I will meet and the opportunities that will arise—all of it is up in the air. I have no way of knowing what will happen, but I do know that I have a fresh start.

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I can make any of my dreams come to fruition, do anything I want to, go anywhere I want to. There are no limits at this point in my life; it’s all up to me what direction I want to go in. I have a completely new beginning, and what happens is under my control to some degree, but I also have no way of ensuring that anything happens.

I just have to hope that things fall into place as I want them to and that if they don’t, I’ll figure things out as I go along. Throughout this journey, I just have to remind myself that this is my chance to recreate myself and accomplish all that I want to; all I have to do is focus on what I want and go after it. Like everyone, I will likely have obstacles along the way, but most things that are worth having don’t come easily. 

It would be a lie to say that my worries about the future don’t keep me awake at night sometimes, but I also stay awake at night imagining the endless possibilities of my future. I manifest happiness and growth and hope that the next phase of my life will be even better than the last, and that’s truly all I can do.

Despite feeling exhausted after going through four years worth of coursework, I still feel invigorated to push for more. I know there’s more out there in the world that I want to see and more that I want to accomplish, so I’m going to do everything in my power to get what I want. Sure, I could end up unemployed. I could not find a career doing what I want to, or I could even end up moving far away from my family and friends then regret it, but there’s always an equal chance that none of those things will happen either. 

As you enter new phases, it’s important to just try to stay positive and hope for the best. Worrying about what could potentially happen can stop you from living in the moment and enjoying the present, so I will just tackle problems as they arise.

I want to use this new opportunity that’s in front of me to set myself up for happiness and success in the future, and even if things don’t go as I planned, I’m going to use unexpected obstacles as an opportunity to develop myself so that after all is said and done this phase results in my own personal growth. 

Britney Simmons is a senior at Virginia Commonwealth University who is majoring in Mass Communications with a Concentration in Print/Online Journalism. She has loved reading and writing since she was a child, and is an animal lover. She loves to travel whenever possible, and you can usually find her binging some new series or napping.
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