Thursday, January 27, 2011

Wisdom from a New "Middle Place"

Well, I have officially been a college graduate for a month, and I can tell you this: College graduation is underwhelming.  When you graduate from high school, there's this huge sense of expectancy and looking at the future--making your own way and your own path.  When you graduate from college, you go to work.  In fact, I went to work the day after my college graduation (and the fourteen days straight after that).  Talk about jumping into the "real world."  But I'm not complaining.  I didn't start a teaching job, obviously, because during those fourteen days that I was working every teacher in the country was kicking back and loving their winter break.  I got a job at a great little boutique near my house, and I work with two other wonderful women, who I already love dearly, selling some pretty fabulous clothes that I am constantly tempted to spend my paycheck on.  When I got this job in November, my mother's response was "Wow, Jess, way to use your degree!"  Thanks, mom.  While this job has nothing to do with my degree, I thought, after the hustle and chaos of my student teaching semester, that I wanted a breather--six months to catch my breath and apply for jobs for the fall.

But I cannot tell a lie, I miss being in the classroom so much.  I love chaos and noise and the sound of middle school dramas in the hallways.  I finally got my teaching license in the mail this week, and that's when it really hit me that I just could not wait to get into a classroom again.  And so the search begins for a new classroom, new students, and another new experience for me, my first "real, big girl job."  In the meantime, I plan to continue blogging, but from a new "middle place."  I've been debating for the past month, since graduation, whether or not I would continue this blog.  But I've learned a few things, even in the past month that I feel are important to throw out into the expansive blogging universe, and, technically, I'm still in the middle.  Now I'm in what I like to think of as the "almost grown-up" middle--that place between graduating from school and finding my first "real job."  I think we can all learn a lot from living in limbo.  So for at least the next six months (hopefully that's all because I'll get a teaching job!) I'll be blogging about wisdom from a new "middle place."

While I've actually learned lots of little random lessons since I graduated into the "real world," I'll just share three with you for now.

1. When your dad tells you to always check that hose behind your washing machine before you do laundry, do it.  That's right, I flooded my entire laundry room.  Like not just a little bit.  I'm talking about a semi-Noah's ark situation on my laundry room floor.  Even when you think you're a grownup, your parents still know best.  True story.

2. Don't put off until tomorrow what you could do today. Yes.  I just used an extremely overused euphemism to provide wisdom.  But it really is so applicable.  For example, if you're sick today, go to the doctor today.  Don't wait until you can barely function (I did this and was sick for a month).  If your GRE is in a week, study today (not the night before for two hours-ish....oops!).  I've found that this little saying has become very applicable in my life.  For some reason, having a little less on my plate has increased my tendency toward procrastination.  Go figure.

3. Most importantly, have a little faith.  After I made it through the craziness of the holidays, I sat down and started to think about my future.  It only took me about five minutes of thinking about that to have a mini panic attack that I would never get hired, never find a significant other, never go anywhere with my life, etc., etc.  It's almost like graduating brings on a little quarter life crisis.  However, I took a deep breath and realized that all those things weren't going to come on my timing.  They'll come when the time is right.  And that's a God thing, not a "me" thing.  While I still occasionally have moments of "where am I going" thoughts, I have gotten comfortable with the idea of working my hardest and having a little faith.  I know I'll end up right where I'm supposed to be.  And right now I'm pretty positive I'm just supposed to be right here.  Happy almost weekend!