The Real World?

I’ve decided that there is absolutely no way to truly prepare anyone for “adulthood” or entering the real world. You go to high school to prepare for college. When you’re in college you’re preparing to get a job, or to go to another school where you will prepare to get a job. And then you’re just done. You’re thrown over the fence where they keep all the hungry, snarling dogs and you wonder if you’re actually going to make it out alive.

When we’re in college we are in a little bubble of essays, and exams and eating bad food because that’s all we can afford. And then we are no longer in our bubble. We don’t get to stick our foot in the water and see how it feels. We don’t get to step outside and then quickly come back in. Nope, we are catapulted from our nice, comfortable bubble and told “Good luck” and “Congratulations!” And we’re supposed to just know what to do.  The problem is, we’ve been in schools our whole lives, supposedly preparing for this moment. While we were in those schools we were too busy filling out scantrons and cramming for tests and just trying to make it through the busy week that we didn’t have time to take a step back and really ask what are purpose is in doing all of this? And to ask, “Do I actually feel ready to go into the real world?” “Will the fact that I aced this test mean a damn thing to my future employer?” Or maybe the most important question we can ask ourselves is “Is this really how I want to spend my life?”

Is this really how I want to spend my life?

I just turned in the last essay I will write in my college career. And while it feels as though a giant weight has been lifted off my shoulders, I also feel a little heavy hearted.

My relationship with writing has been tumultuous at times. And over the past four years, I have questioned why I am doing this, if I’m any good at it, and more importantly, if I care whether I’m good or not? I have beaten my head against the table trying to reach page limits or word limits or works cited. And I have laid my head down on the same table, just trying to write the words that I was too afraid to say aloud.

Writing has been the bane of my existence and the saving grace in my life. 

And now, I am no longer forced to write. I have no more assignments that require my voice to come through or my thoughts to have some sort of cohesion to them. I have thrown essays away when I saw the grade, only to fish them out later and have a conversation with the teacher. As angry as I was that they could dare give me lower than an A on a essay, those are the teachers I learned the most from. They helped me improve; and more importantly, they humbled me. My writing is better because of the teachers that pissed me off.

The last post for this blog is already being drafted. I find myself having to stop and take breaks to make sure I am really saying what I want to say. I also take breaks to keep from having too many emotions escape. I never thought that I would fall in love with writing the way that I have. 

Pen and paper will always listen. Even if you don’t think you need to talk. When tears come streaming down my face, I turn to pen and paper. Pen and paper will catch your falling tears.

I don’t think I ever fully realized my love for writing until now. When life breaks my heart, or the LSAT breaks me down, I write. And I let myself feel. Even when I reread posts like that I can feel a lump in my throat and a tear forming in my eyes. But that’s what you need to do. That is why I write.

I don’t think I am so passionate about the written word until someone tries to devalue or belittle it. Until someone says, “English, what are you going to do with that degree?!” And even though I know what the job market looks like, I continue to defend my decision and I still believe I made the right choice. Because despite the lack of appreciation for writers and a beautifully composed, emotional piece of writing, I fell in love with writing because of my degree. Despite all our ups and downs, I fell in love with writing.

Your writing voice is the deepest possible reflection of who you are. The job of your voice is not to seduce or flatter or make well-shaped sentences. In your voice, your readers should be able to hear the contents of your mind, your heart, your soul.


Ugh, emotions

I’m terrified of opening up. I would rather keep all my thoughts inside my head than say them aloud. No matter how hard I try and how hard other people try to get me to open up, it doesn’t get easier over time. And that, above anything else will scare people away. And I’m sorry.

However, lately I’ve been wondering why I cry more often than before when I am truly happy overall. I think I figured it out. You allow me to. And I feel again. At this time last year, I decided once again that I wasn’t going to let myself fall and I definitely wasn’t going to show any tears or weakness. And I didn’t for a really long time. And now I’m happy and I sometimes still feel the need to cry. But I’m not afraid to do it anymore. Thank you.

Let it all out

What I learned this weekend, is sometimes you have to let it all out. 

Coming from someone who doesn’t like to show vulnerability, who hates to cry in front of people and generally releases emotions through writing or yoga, I hate to admit it but sometimes it’s best to just let it go. 

Let your head fall, you’ve been holding it up high all day, take a break. 

Feel the chin start to quiver, the lump in your throat start to form. 

Take deep breaths thinking that that might help prevent the tears from forming. 

Let the inevitable tears form and more importantly, let them fall. 

Just let it flow out of your eyes. 

In my case, I was laying down so I ended up with tears in my ears and black eye liner marks all over. It was my extreme smoky eye look. 

I didn’t think I really needed to let it go. I had done everything that I thought would help to make sure that I didn’t cry.  And it’s true I didn’t cry while I was doing all of those things, but somehow, I still did. 

And I was lucky enough to have an amazing person there with me to comfort me and hold me. He kept wanting me to talk about it, about why I was crying and what was going on in my head. I told him that it’s so much easier to think about things and just let them stay in your head than to say them out loud. But I did anyways. And it made the tears fall faster and my chin quiver more and my voice shakier. But I said them nonetheless.

And then I was joking around with him and started crying again. It confused us both but I just had to go with it. 

Sometimes you just have to go with the tears.