Recent college grad, jumping into the work force, living with parents and living away from friends. Twenty-two is weird, really, really weird. Every aspect of life has changed, drastically.
The Work Force
Okay, so this may seem silly and self-explanatory but going from a college students to a full-time, salaried employee is like jumping into the ocean but not knowing how to swim. Or as some would say baptism by fire, or a swift kick in the rear. And, words like savings, retirement, insurance and taxes take on a whole new meaning! Whatever you prefer to call this change, it is absolutely terrifying, overwhelming and fantastic all in one package.
Living with Parents
Now, first thing is first, not buying groceries, not cooking and not paying rent are all exceptionally great! I mean, really, no real expenses makes saving money MUCH easier. It also makes luxuries a little more doable. BUT going from college life to living with parents again has it’s thorns too. Like the dog who wakes up incredibly early and has no regard for staying quiet. Or the sometimes too healthy food options or the weekends that no longer mean sleeping in. It’s a change for all parties involved.
Suddenly Long Distance
Coming home from class, he’s there. Coming home from practice, he’s there. Grocery shopping, he’s there. Sick, he’s there. Going to bed, he’s there. Waking up, he’s there. And THEN, one day he’s 316 (soon to be 100) miles away and we are relying on texting as our main form of communication. With and occasional FaceTime mixed in! News flash! Not a fantastic mode of communication.
Talk about a drastic change and a change that I am not wild about. But hey, I realized that I’d much rather have his opened dresser drawers, his boxers left on the floor and the melted chapstick in the dryer than 316 miles between us.
(Sorry about the photo, Scott)
Marriage, Kids, Ahhh!
Twenty-two is also weird because you have some friends that are unemployed (some by choice), some friends still in college (getting intoxicated all too often), some friends that are engaged (or married) and some friends that already have a kid (or two)! It’s extremely hard to keep track of and to comprehend the different pace of life. You really gotta just go with the flow.
Away from Friends
And to stay on the topic of friends… all these different life stages are taking place hours away from me!
“Want to go out on Friday?” Sure! I’ll drive 100 miles after work and I’ll sleep on your couch for the night.
“Come to my wedding!” No problem, I’ll take a day off work and find a hotel for the weekend!
Nothing is as simple as it was three months ago and I definitely cannot show up unannounced to friends houses on a moments notice or stop by just for fun. Thank goodness for Instagram, Snapchat and twitter for keeping me updated about daily occurrences.
No Longer an Athlete
My workouts are no longer planned for me and let’s just stay my workouts no longer exist. Okay, I’m exaggerating a little but I definitely should be working out more than I do. As much as I dispised getting up at the crack of dawn for workouts, it felt so good to start the day like that. And not only that, but not being surrounded by my teammates on a daily basis is completely bizarre. Not know every single detail about every players’ day is weird. And I even miss those miserably long practices.
Telling people “I used to play softball” is still not natural and I imagine it will be awhile before it is.
Reading for Pleasure
I’m pretty positive that if you were to ask college students if they read for pleasure, the answer would be no. Reading was dreadful because reading meant homework or studying. Most the time reading meant skimming, taking notes and doing just enough to finish the assignment. Reading a textbook was a sure fire way to fall asleep. However, I have started to read for pleasure and my most recent book is “Twenty-Two”, shocking, right? Well I love it! And reading for pleasure has given me a whole new insight and thought process! And I don’t dread opening the book!
What this all means…
In all honesty, I HAVE NO IDEA. I’m reading a book to figure it out (no, really, I am). However, I’d like to thinking it means that I’m growing, I’m learning, I’m building a life, I’m figuring out what I want and what I don’t want. I would like to think that this craziness is good and normal. I come to realize that mistakes are inevitable, spontaneity is crucial and positivity is the only answer. I’m finding motivation among the crazy and goals among the confusion. “I’m feeling twenty-two” has taken on a completely new meaning. No wonder Taylor Swift made a song about it…