What do you guys study in college or do for a job? I have a month left to finalise my college course options and im so stressed. My parents want me to do nursing but frankly id rather die and i cant do any arts course because i cant financially afford a degree that won’t lead to a clear job. Im thinking about creative computing because its both technical and arty but i dont know anything about computers and i hear computer science is hard and um ya gal is dumb at maths and anyway i want to cry and i hate being too poor to do the courses i actually want to do that arent in my local college and then too “rich” to qualify for financial aid
So I know I’m not very active on my studyblr. I struggle to keep up with school much less a blog about school. It’s been difficult since I started college in 2015. Had I been on track. I would have graduated last spring in 2019, but as it stands, I believe I’m set to graduate around 2022. It probably would have taken longer had I not switched my major.
I started my journey to college terrified of the future. My childhood was tumultuous. After the age of 7, I moved so much (over 10 times) and even experienced homelessness one summer. I saw my mom struggle to support my brother and I in a job that seemed exhausting. I worked my first job at a fast food chain and experienced first hand how people treat you when they see you at a certain level. I didn’t want to work 60 hours a week and still be on food stamps. I didn’t want to work in a job where I had no respect.
If you asked me what my favourite class was in school, I would have told you English, but I already knew the humanities hardly had any career options outside of teaching which I wasn’t particularly interested in and had wildly varying conditions and incomes. When I told my mom that I enjoyed chemistry (because science seemed safe to me), she told me that I probably wouldn’t do much besides be a lab tech or maybe a researcher if I did well. I was nervous, and I decided going for something more ‘well regarded’ would save me from this future I was so afraid of. As a result, I started looking at schools that offered chemical engineering.
I thought it would be fine. I would do something close to my interests, and I wouldn’t need to worry about security, but the transition to college was difficult and left me feeling alone. I was struggling in classes that I never would have been interested in. I was legitimately failing which was something I had never experienced before. I felt like my friend group didn’t really understand me, and I missed the friend group I had in high school which had been the longest friendships of my life. I was taking the number of credit hours to keep me on the four year track (19 and 20) without knowing that was well over full time. I was attending a private college on scholarship, and I was terrified because it had been my first choice.
I couldn’t understand why I was struggling so much, but when I ended the first semester I was hopeful. This quickly changed as my workload didn’t change. No one, not even the advisor I had a mandatory scheduling meeting with, told me that what I was doing wasn’t normal. I just assumed I was failing while everyone else was succeeding.
I fell into an awful depression. I didn’t know what was going to happen to me, and the thought of facing that seemed impossible. I stopped going to all but one class (which I went to because it was based around group work). I stayed up until the sun started to come up and slept until dinnertime. I tried to act normal around my friends, but I probably wasn’t succeeding. I wanted to die, but instead, I started self harming again.
It was an awful time, but when the year ended, I knew I couldn’t stay in that major. I went to community college and eventually figured that something like a lab tech couldn’t be too bad, and after taking a biology class I actually enjoyed, I thought biochemistry would be a good option. However, while the subject was interesting, I was still struggling. I couldn’t understand what was wrong with me until I came across information online about adhd in women.
Suddenly, things made sense including things from before college. Between what I read and having two immediate family members who were diagnosed, I was pretty confident I had found some of the cause for my troubles, but with no ability to pay for therapy or the costly test (the cheaper option through the university is still hundreds of dollars), I wouldn’t be able to get accommodations that would allow me to succeed. Additionally, I had reached the point where I could no longer take a key class for my major because I had attempted it too many times. It was clear I had to switch majors, but to what?
Recently, I had seen someone talking about their work as a librarian, and I was curious. I looked up information and found that it was a lot more work than I imagined, but the idea took hold. I knew getting there would allow me to take classes on what I truly enjoyed, and when it came time to find a job, I would be in a field that combines my love of books, community-oriented service, and organization. As a result, I’m now an English major with the plan to go to school for a Masters in Library Sciences.
I’m sharing this because I know there are people in the community who are still in high school or in the early years of college who may also be afraid to pursue their interests. While I still chose a career path that seems to make a decent living wage, I’m also on a path towards something I love. I understand my path is passion tempered by the events in my life that gave me a harsh sense of realism or, at times, pessimism, and to some extent, it’s good to know what to expect.
However, if you are comfortable with the potential struggle following your passion may introduce to your life, you should follow that path. I’ve never had something that I wanted to do no matter what besides live a comfortable life with those I love, but that’s not the case for others. I guess the other point of this is that whatever you decide to do should bring you the most happiness whether that’s struggling in a field you love or choosing one that will allow you to live the life you want outside of work. The truly lucky ones will have both, but as long as one isn’t awful, the other should be fulfilling enough.
Quite frankly, I think the way society has us think about our futures is inherently flawed. I think all people really want to do is love and be loved and leave a mark on the world, even if that mark isn’t earth shattering. Please don’t let your own fears get in the way of achieving that because there is so much to be gained when you allow yourself to really consider the possibilities, and if it takes you a little longer than some people to get there, that’s okay. We all have our own journeys that are difficult in their own way.
You may feel behind others, but they may eventually feel that way themselves. I don’t know if it’s a saying outside of the Alien franchise, but in Prometheus, they say nothing God created ever grows in a straight line. The same is true of people. Sometimes we aren’t planted in the best soil or receive enough water along the way or just have bad luck in the genes department, but we will grow despite those obstacles.