On this exact date, a year ago, I was preparing for my graduation at home. I remember preparing for my drive by graduation that my family & close friends would come and support me on my big day. I remember being so happy to officially be done with school. This was the moment that I had been working towards and I was just relieved that the moment finally arrived.
The stress and mental anguish I went through of wanting to know what my next steps would be, but also realizing I needed some time to rest and recoup.
After someone accomplishes something BIG everyone always asks the question, What’s Next? Which would annoy me in different ways because I felt I just accomplished something that beat me down in so many ways. ALL I wanted to focus on was this milestone and working on myself in the coming year. AND that‘s exactly what I did. I focused on myself getting to know my wants, needs, and desires for an entire year.
I know everyone doesn’t have the luxury of living at home with your family and having time to figure things out, but I’m lucky and grateful that was my experience. Now, my parents definitely pushed me to figure things out, they wanted me to find that job or get back in school. I was trying to find full time employment and thanks to the pandemic it was extremely difficult. I knew that I wanted to go back to school, I even thought after six months I would be ready, but I wasn’t. I needed more time, time to prepare myself mentally and also figure out exactly what I want to go to school for.
In college I would always talk to family and friends about taking time off after school. There would be two completely different reactions. Most of my friends and peers would understand the need for a break or time away after school. However, my family and those older than me would frown upon this idea of taking time away.
I would always hear, “Oh don’t do that, you will never go back.”, “That’s a bad idea, just stay in school and finish right away.”, “What you need time off for?”, and the list of commentary could go on.
I never thought in my mind that even if I did take time off, I wouldn’t go back to school. I’ve always had higher education in my mind since I started college. If you truly know what you want, nothing will STOP you from accomplishing those goals.
Of course I can only speak on my journey and what I experienced, but I know there are many people who move into the next phase of their life right after undergrad. Whether thats a big full time job opportunity or continuing their education, and many are successful. However, I knew that was not the case for me. I just had a complete year from HELL, I just remember praying and asking God to give me rest.
So, here I am, ONE year later from the day I graduated, and I’m excited to share that I’m heading right back to school. I’m so excited for this journey, I feel prepared and ready for what’s coming my way. I’m mentally in a different space than I was when I started as a freshman in undergrad. I will be starting my graduate program at DePaul University in January. I’m so excited to attend school in my city, I’ve always wanted to go to school downtown. LOL I know it’s so random but seriously it’s always been a dream. Who knows what opportunities this will present me for what’s to come in the future.
So take this as your sign to take time for yourself, figure out who you are and what you want. Those around you will want the best for you and will push you, but stay true to your COURSE. I was always grateful to have people in my corner that would push me. I loved that people wanted my success to continue. But when it came to making BIG important decisions, I wanted it to be on my terms, not someone else’s. At the end of the day it’s your life and sometimes only YOU know what’s best for you.
I can’t even imagine what my mental state would be if I automatically jumped into a graduate program right after undergrad. I don’t regret my decision in taking this full year off, I feel so ready to jump back into things. Never allow anyones doubts or opinions to deter you from what you feel is best for your life.
Stay positive and prayerful that God is leading you in the right direction. Don’t second guess yourself or the decisions you make even when others do. Follow your heart and your gut.
So stay tuned for what’s to come and please keep me in your prayers as I embark on this new beginning and journey in my life. Peace, Love, and Blessings!
XOXO - TAY ✨