Growing Pains: Getting Ready to Graduate

About four months ago, the fact that I was going to graduate this semester seemed like the most exciting thing.

After 16 consecutive years of education, I just didn’t want to ‘school’ any more.

Everything from doing those boring online readings, to writing the best paper, to studying for midterms, to simply putting on a proper outfit, seemed like a herculean effort.

And yet, with two months to go, I am filled with an amassed amount of confusion and fear towards the future.

Yes, I am psyched to graduate, but also, what on earth am I going to do next?! 

Getting ready for more adventures post-graduation.

It’s not like this snuck up on me. The classic question for people who are finishing up their degrees is “so, what’re you going to do when you graduate?”

My easy answer was that I was going to get a job. What I really want to do is travel, but you need money for that. So, first: job.

With four co-ops under my belt, and what I think to be my charming and sparkling personality, four-months-ago-Ali thought this plan was foolproof.

I was hopeful that I would be able to find the kind of job I wanted as soon as I was done school.

But the more that I apply for jobs, the more I think that I am just not going to get one. There are so many jobs and so many people out there. Frankly, it’s overwhelming.

I was excited to escape the pressure of being in school and maintaining perfect grades, but now the job search feels like a whole new weight on my shoulders.

I feel like I’m in a soccer stadium and everyone in my life is in the stands staring down at me. This is it — this is her moment — will she manage to get a job? Will she make something of herself?

Also — where on earth am I going to live? I come from Edmonton, home of -4o winters, flat prairies, dead grass, and a really big mall. After spending the last four and a half years in Victoria, I am quite certain that I will no longer actually survive in Edmonton. So. I can’t go home.

My boyfriend lives in Vancouver. Shall I go there and try to get a job? Where will I live in Vancouver’s horrific housing market? What about all my friends and the life I’ve built here?

Looking into my potential future in Vancouver

I know that, like everything in life, this will sort itself out. That’s how life works — even when nothing goes according to plan, you muddle through, and end up better for it. I know that. Yet, the planner in me is freaking out.

This is the first time in my life with a big, hollow, unknown in the middle of it.

Life has been pretty easy for me, so far. This whole graduation thing is giving me a foreboding feeling that it’s about to get a whole lot harder.

Going into the future, I don’t have a plan.

I don’t know where I’ll be living in two months, or what I’ll be doing, but I know I’ll be okay. And I know that if you’re also going through this, you’ll be okay too.

P.S. Is anybody hiring? 😉

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