When you reach a milestone in life, it’s a lot more affecting than you might think. I guess because I didn’t have a lot of people in my family that went to college before I did (well until my parents got remarried, but even then I never really heard stories), I never quite knew what to expect. I’m the oldest of my family, and because I don’t know yet what my 8 year old brother and 5 year old sister are going to grow up to be like, I don’t know what I’m supposed to tell them about college. I mean, here I am, spending my free time sitting in Starbucks reading and writing blog posts for hours on end, listening to quality music like “Under the Boardwalk” by The Drifters, which is what is currently playing was I write this in the back of my Math/English notebook. I don’t know if they will enjoy down time like this, as much as I hope they will. And who’s to say they would even have the same college experience, considering I’m a film student? For all I know, my brother could end up being a social worker, and my sister a biochemist. Hell, for all I know they could just not go to college at all. I just want to be able to give them good advice about the rest of their lives. That’s what a big sister is supposed to do right? Be a mentor?
Except, I don’t know anything about the rest of my life. I sit around wondering what will become of me every day; I contemplate if this is what I’m supposed to be doing with my life.
In high school, I dated a guy for 13 months, and it’s the typical love story that I won’t get into detail with. Boy meets girl, they fall in love, hearts get broken, it takes years to recover; you know what I’m talking about. Anyhow, after a long time of internal arguing over whether I hated him, loved him, or wanted to at least be civil with him, I decided (at this current time; I’m an indecisive person) that I wanted to be friends. So we are, and we talk, and I may have forgotten to mention that I unintentionally followed him to school. Same major and all. Well it’s convenient because I have somebody reliable to tell me the truth about all of my school and future worries. However, that reliable and unbiased truth isn’t always something I want to hear. The most recent update: he hates school and is dropping out at the end of the semester to do what he wants to do with his life.
And I give him major credit for that; I hope one day I focus my future on what makes me happy no matter the case.
But, at the end of his senior year, I thought he was somebody that had it all figured out. He was going to be a successful film maker/musician and be okay either as a broke artist or big name. So to hear that what he originally dreamed of isn’t working out at all for him, kind of scared me. I mean he has changed as a person so of course his dreams are going to change also. Just like mine have. But he’s not the only one in my major at this school that hates it. Granted, most are sticking it out, but it doesn’t mean they’re happy they are there. Hearing so much of this is terrifying and has been really making me think about my life. I’m beginning to doubt my future.
Let me clear something up: I’m good at what I’m doing and I enjoy it. I keep getting told that with being a sound concentration, I’m going to make a lot of money. And I’m sure I’ll enjoy my work. Isn’t that all you’re supposed to need in a career? Enjoyment and success, in that order? I should be set… I mean I can’t even see myself doing anything else…
See, originally I had multiple dreams. The first was to be a photographer. I’ve loved it for years, I have a good eye, and I have experience. Lately though, I’ve lost touch with it, only using my camera once every few months. I still love it. But the field is competitive, as photographers are a dime-a-dozen, and I’m not the best in the world. So I let that dream fade. Well next on the conveyor belt was the dream of becoming a graphic designer.
In my junior year, I started my second education at the local vo-tech school in their graphic design program. In our first year, none of my classmates, including myself, were all that talented. We got a lot better towards the end of the year though. It became a new passion for me. I began to see my new career path. My senior year, I returned as a second-year sutdent, and while the assignments got more in-depth and detailed, so did my life plan. My talent soared that year, and I became the most artistic I’ve ever been. I became a student my teacher appreciated, halfway through the year that is, as we had a falling out in the beginning of the year that made me consider dropping out. By the end though, my dream that I developed the previous year, faded. In the transition of fall to spring, I applied to La Roche College in the North Hills of Pittsburgh for their graphic design program (FYI for any aspiring GDs in Pittsburgh: La Roche is the only school around worth your time, money, and attention. It’s got the best program in the surrounding area. DON’T GO TO THE ART INSTITUTE). I was genuinely looking forward to school here, but then I toured Point Park, and I decided it was where I needed to be. Point Park became my home before I even moved in down there (plus they accepted me months before I even heard a word from La Roche). So my graphic design dream faded over the summer. I realized that after the program ended and I wasn’t doing work every day, my talents dwindled. All the work I did back then, I don’t think I could do now. Or rather, I can do it, but I’m not nearly as creative when it comes to layouts and such as I used to be. So that just tells me that I would not have been successful with it as a career. So here I am. I’m carrying my audio experience from working with the theater at my high school over to film and studying the great movies of history and learning what it means to be a film maker. And I am enjoying it. I really, truly am. But I still have these aspirations that I plan to carry out.
The first one, and the longest lasting one will be traveling. But that can be saved for another post.
Film is the only thing I have left to myself. The thing is, what if I end up hating the program? What if I’m unhappy with my life after? What am I going to do?
I just don’t want to fail at this. And the sake isn’t even for myself, but for my siblings. I want to be able to give them the advice they need. But I want to make sure that advice is the truth.
P.S. I wish I could have ended this better, but I wrote this this afternoon in my notebook while sitting in Starbucks after my coffee. I am out of my element now.