Anyone who knows me personally understands I have, or had, a firm stance with my education and school habits. I worked hard, paid attention and always had my eye on a distinct goal. From a young age, I understood my predetermined circumstances (my color, race, and gender) were going to create serious obstacles for me, so I decided I was going to work harder than everyone that I felt “threatened” by in order to be on top; to get on top. Recently, all of this changed.
As I’ve matured and obtained more knowledge and experience, I’ve come into tact with reality here and there. I noticed that my color, race, and gender would always be an issue within my lifetime, but people were beginning to accept modern development in the business world; people were beginning to accept people like me. It’s ridiculous that the involvement of certain races and genders in particular groups, activities, or political affairs is even remotely considered a controversial predicament. People are people and should be able to join any affairs they please. I am proud to say that the world is slowly, yet unsteadily proceeding in such a direction. This evolution means that nonwhites, the once-poor, the minority, and females are being handed a more valid voice and greater opportunity. How is this affecting my views on school?
Becoming a freshmen was a huge fear that festered in my thoughts long before I was even going to attend high school. Now that I am one, I realized it is nothing like I imagined. I was starting to form connections between my fears and reality. I realized I wasn’t going to have to work as hard as I thought, and that high school, or at least my high school, isn’t exactly a four year trip through Hell itself. These two realizations alone changed my whole view on school. I kind of care a little less about it every year. When I was about 5, I wanted to be an artist, then I wanted to sing, then I wanted to be a veterinarian, then I wanted to be in animal welfare, and now I’m old enough to understand my interests, my comforts, my strong suits, and my weaknesses. I found comfort in reading and writing, and later discovered I had the potential and willingness to make a career out of it, if God allowed.
I have thought long and hard about how I could one day survive without a lengthy college education and a stack of unnecessary degrees. Then I thought some more on how I told everyone I’d make it big and be someone great. I’ve always been a snotty little people pleaser, and I disappoint myself when I disappoint others. This was a very negative trait which has been gradually degrading over the years. I’m at a point now where I attend school because of the law. I honestly believe I would show up to school just out of curiosity a couple times a week, if school was an optional activity. But, since it’s not, I tell myself I attend because I have a list of people I have to prove something to. I have to go to a university, graduate, get certain degrees, write books, be on Ellen, and become known world wide. I don’t want even 50% of that, but if it showed the world that a mixed female can do whatever she says she’s going to do, then you better believe I’d make fame and fortune my life goal. Sad, huh?
At this point in my life, I see school as an opportunity that I can either take or leave. I am forced to show up, but I voluntarily participate and engage myself in the curriculum. I am starting to view my future from a reasonable eye rather than a childish one. I want to graduate from high school with the highest GPA I can earn while exuding my best efforts. I want to be accepted into whichever college I decide on and graduate with whatever degrees I decide on earning. My point is, I want to be able to accomplish the things I want to do. Maybe I just want to graduate high school and do a few years of community college just to get the college experience, or maybe I will want to go to Stanford for 8 years (sike). Whatever I plan to do will be done because I have thoroughly thought out how my future will manifest if I take that specific path.
I just want to be happy. Happy to me is living in a little studio apartment with my pets and lover. Happiness is being a freelance writer and blogger who can travel with her lover all over the world indulging in the many vegetarian pizza options. Happiness is really simple to me, and I truly believe I am not happy at times because I know I don’t want to be in school for another four years. School can be a really diversified, accepting place, but other times it can be the reason you have dark eye circles and missing chunks of hair. I don’t want dark eye circles or any less hair than I have now, but because I’m so pressured and programmed to get good grades and attend years of school, I’m not happy.
Education is not something that everyone gets, especially not for free. I understand that, and that pushes my gratitude beyond it’s previous limits for the opportunities I am constantly given to learn. I also understand that just because society has forced you to believe something is mandatory or normal, that in no way means it is. If school is not something you enjoy, and your future plans don’t include 8 years at Stanford, then don’t follow that path. Yes, in America we have a wide range of opportunity to learn, and guess what? That means you don’t have to attend school to do it. After you finish high school, do what makes you happy. What you do from then on is going to affect you more than anyone else. Be a freelance photographer, an artist, an animal trainer, a carpenter, a musician. Do and be whatever is going to make the rest of your life enjoyable.
Do what makes you happy.