I graduated from college last month. A few months ago, I was in a group with a couple of other seniors, and we talked about what what making us anxious when we thought about the upcoming graduation. I told everybody that the thing that I was most anxious about was the questions: “So, what’s next?” “What do your plans look like from here?” I was also dreading stepping back into the role of overachieving, “good son (/nephew/grandson/other relationship)” I thought that all I wanted to do was disappear for a little bit, to take some time to just live like I wanted and to not have ambition for a while.
The best thing about this post-graduation time has been that all those questions that I worried about have not really come to pass. My family and friends have been very supportive and proud of my accomplishment without probing into my near-term future. And it’s been so liberating to discover the profound extent to which nobody really cares. People care, of course. That phrase sounds terrible. It’s not that there are no people that care about my well being, or want me to realize my talents. But it is true that right now, all of my life choices are my own and there are very few people in the world that would question those choices.