This is the time to live. This is the time to earnestly, truly live. To open your wild heart and free spirit to the possibilities of the new and wonderful and familiar and distant places you’ve never set foot on before.
The cliche is true. Post-graduation is a weird, albeit exciting time. It really is. I won’t go on to give you step by step layout of the highs and lows you’ll probably run in to (besides, you’ve probably already read fifteen BuzzFeed articles prepping you for a series of post-grad woes). Telling you how you’re going to feel is not my place. I’m no guru. I’m still a mess. I still am trying to navigate through the real world with my head above water and a sense of grace… and I graduated two years ago. But what I do know is that from the time you walk across the stage and flip your tassle (like a boss!) to the time when you’ve moved back into your old bedroom where you would listen to Bright Eyes and contemplate where you would be after college, a lot of feelings happen. Let me say that again… a lot of feelings happen.
Hope, envy, curiosity, jealousy, sloth. They all sort of meld together into this weird, overarching sense of confusion and excitement. Suddenly, a zillion avenues revealing themselves and you’re left debating which route is the “right” one to follow. (Hint: there’s a zillion “right” routes to follow. Sorry to add to the confusion!) The world appears to be a bigger, brighter place filled with possibility when the structure of collegiate life is all but washed away. No course selection or an anxiety fueled need to push-push-push towards finishing that paper will ever haunt your dreams again.
The only ONLY suggestion I could ever give to you all is that this is your time to explore. The best investment you could ever buy into post-graduation isn’t a television set or a new sound system, and it isn’t a new bed frame or purse. The best graduation gift you could ever give yourself is a passport. Because 140 dollars can buy you the world. And that world is begging for you to finally get out and take it all in.
The world you read about, the cultures you’ve spent countless hours analyzing and comparing, the food your cafeteria always tried to mimick. It’s out there. The feeling of complete freedom and the solidarity of discovering something incredible. It’s out there. The exhilaration of complete newness and the unseen. It’s out there. It’s really, really out there.
Burst your own bubble. Bust outside of your comfort zone. See what others experience every day in passing. Befriend people who are of different from your own age, beliefs, socioeconomic standing and nationality and watch your life fill with inspiration. See the world you debated and researched and slaved to understand in class. Appreciate where you’re from. Broaden your own perspective. Find a deeper appreciation for your home. Find clarity. Welcome peace. Ask yourself the deeper questions while you traipse around a cobble stoned alley. Wonder what your true aspirations are.
These things happen. They happen when you instill a sense of wonder and appreciation for the world. Get out there. I beg of you, get out there.