Thursday, July 22, 2010

Welcome to The "Real World"

It's over. College, that is. According to my mom, it's just the beginning. But this doesn't feel like any sort of beginning to me (I am living in my old bedroom in my parent's house).

I graduated Cum Laude from the University of Miami about two months ago. The graduation day came and went mostly unspectacular, other than the horrible blisters I got from the sky-high sandals I made myself wear.

It all went like this: one day I was in class, taking a final- and the next thing I know, my bags are packed and I'm booking a flight home. It was kind of like every summer. Only this time, I wasn't coming back.

In a lot of ways, I guess it still hasn't hit me. I'm home now, back with my parents, in a psuedo-high school state. I have my first job working full-time as a local reporter, and on weekends at American Apparel selling leggings and bandeau bras. My friends are all away at internships or their "dream jobs," even Euro trips and cross-country road trips. My social life is nil. My mom still tells me to clean my room. Let's just say this: the post-grad life is, so far, not as I had expected it to be.

My job as a reporter requires me to interview people I have never before met on a daily basis. I show up at all my interviews the same way; recorder in hand, notebook under my arm. Smiling. Wearing something I think makes me look mature. I shake hands, introduce myself. And I tell them I only just graduated college.

These are the responses I always get:
-"Welcome to the real world";
-"The party's over";
-"Working sucks."

Typically, I get a combination of all three. But the thing is, I never thought working "sucked," at least not until everyone told me that. I was excited to get into the "Real World," to make my own money, be independent, send myself all over the world. That's what I thought.

Is my first job my perfect, most ideal job? No, but whose is? In this economy, I am lucky enough to have a job. And let me say this, it is one hell of a huge learning experience. They don't teach this stuff in class.

So I raise my glass (a wine glass, in fact, as I am a classy woman now) to my college years. I look back fondly at the frat parties, those times I thought a cut-up t-shirt and flip flops looked good. To the hangovers that made me swear never to drink again, to the times I've watched the sunrise as I frantically finished typing up a paper. I remember sharing a room the size of my linen closet with a girl I had never before met, sitting at a computer in the library high-fiving friends walking by. Cheering for my football team, the Miami Hurricanes, even though they never won too many games. Studying by the campus swimming pool, playing hooky to drive down to the beach. Here's to the two boys who left an impression on me (one who broke my heart, and the other whose heart  I broke), to the South Beach nightlife, boating, cocktail parties. The list goes on and on.

I already miss college. And I always will. But in my heart of hearts, I am beyond thankful that I had the chance to go to the University of Miami, and to have the experience that I did. And I can only hope, as I move onwards, to find even greater happiness in my future.

Until then, I will keep looking and take things one step at a time. There is a wonderful future out there for me, but it's up to me to make it for myself.

Nina M.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Good Luck!! You are a talented writer, your future will be bright!!!