Off the Tracks

Image by Asya Baranova


I’ve always known what I wanted to do with my life: get through school, move to New York City, pursue a career in writing, and marry Leonardo DiCaprio. As of now, I’m way behind in my life plans as I’m taking an indefinite leave of absence from school. Instead of finishing what would be my senior year, I’m working as a sales associate/stylist while living in my childhood bedroom at my parents house. 

I’ve had my life planned almost scientifically since age ten and the second things began to go south, all of my intuitions went out the window and I began calling my mom “mommy” again. After months of agonizing over what I would do next, I decided, and I make this sound much simpler than it was, I had to put school on hold and move back home to find a job and figure out my next few steps. 

I always believed I would take the estimated four years to graduate, then move to a big city and start work. That’s what happens in movies, and that’s what happens to most everyone I know. What I didn’t realize is that I’m not like most everyone I know, and as I furthered in my college career, I became more and more unhappy with where I was headed. College itself is hard, but when you don’t want to be there, it becomes even more difficult.

It’s still taking time to settle in. I haven’t been home for longer than three weeks since before I left for college, and living with my parents after living on my own for the past three years is a huge culture shock. For every client I gain and paycheck I receive, I still have to check in with my parents and fill them in on where I’m going and who is going to be there. It’s more than frustrating because I never thought I would be in this position. My transition into the so-called “real world” happened much faster than anticipated and I’m struggling with it everyday.

There are so many things people have said to me since my messy transition from college into the working world, but the one thing that sticks with me is that I’m not alone. There are so many other people struggling with their own evolution to adulthood and if there’s one thing I want you to take away from my own struggles, it’s this: YOU ARE NOT ALONE!!!!!! Everyone has some sort of early-life-crisis when they make that transition, but it is imperative you know that there is no “normal” path in life and accepting that is the real first step into the real world.

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