Well friends, inanutshell is almost a year old. Time sure does fly when you’re having fun! If you’ve been following along, you know that I’ve been working away, attempting to complete my Master’s Degree in Legal Studies. I can proudly say, that today marks the last day of my academic career. (At least, for now/the foreseeable future).
I have to say, even though I have complained about the workload and wished that I wasn’t in the library countless times over the past two years, now that it’s all ending, it’s definitely bittersweet. This program has been one of the most challenging things that I’ve ever taken on, and while I should celebrate by throwing my cares to the wind, I can’t help but feel a little bit overwhelmed.
For the past 20 years of my life, I’ve been a student. And tomorrow, that changes. That abrupt shift from ‘student’ (read: young) to ‘working’ (read: adult) is terrifying, to say the least. ‘Student’ has literally helped shape my identity for as long as I can remember.
Luckily, I have a wonderful group of friends who have made that transition before me and have set wonderful examples. I have watched them leave the realm of academia behind and in turn, focus their time on their own interests. They’re still some of the smartest women I know, and they haven’t been to a class in years.
I guess what I’m trying to say is, that after a bit of reflection, I’ve realized that even though I’ll no longer be a student at Carleton University, I’m still going to be learning and growing, but for myself instead of someone’s syllabus. And while it’s instinctual to feel nervous when our lives change and we set off onto a new path, one aspect of our identity does not define us. Even though it’s going to take some time getting used to the fact that I’m no longer a student, it doesn’t make me a different person.
And so, to all the other young adults out there who have the same anxiety about ‘growing up’ and leaving a different part of your life behind, I’ll leave you with some home-cooked advice from my Mom: “Relax. Breathe. Things happen for a reason. And when they happen, you will always find a way to land on your feet.”
I’d also like to take this opportunity to specifically thank my family, my man and my wide circle of friends who have continued to support me over the past year, and specifically, the last few months. Your words of encouragement and your genuine interest in my work have helped me in ways that you don’t even know. From the bottom of my heart, I thank you all.