“Living with regrets is the biggest regret you will ever have.”
Right when you graduation from High School, the expectations are much higher and not just from your family , but from society. You are expected to follow the rules of society and expect to start paying for your taxes. Lots of expectations and new rules to follow. You have all these stresses that you did not imagine. The reality of the world hits you like a rock. You start to stumble around finding where you belong and sometimes you might not even find it. With all these possibilities of the world, you are unable to focus on where you fit in this world.
Before I graduated high school, I was very excited to get out into the real world. I wanted to see what the hype was all about. Have the freedom to get my own place, my own car , but I never thought about the … stresses. More the reality of the situation, facing the real world head on. My parents have sheltered me from paying bills, what we could afford and could not. Why mom said No to ice cream many times. Why dad would not let us get those expensive toys, Why we did not take trips to another countries.
Leaving high school, I had this blanket of expectations put on me, by society. I was expected to follow the rules of the road, fall into a pattern of work, sleep , eat and so on. These were my expectations. I was expected to go to college, graduate, get a job, get married and start family. ALL IN THAT ORDER.
If I wanted to step outside this order, I was faced with “What ifs..” or “Just stay where you at..” or ” This is just how it is…”
I was not given that option to explore my options or asked what I wanted. The only thing I was asked as “What did I want to be when I grew up? Not… “Where do you want to go in this career when you grow up, where do you want to live and how do you want to get there? All I knew was this “safety blanket” that consistent of following the steps society that my parents had taught me is what I was expected to do.
Not only that, I was expected to do all this in my 20s. Right when I turned 20, I was expected to do so many things:
- Graduate college
- Find a good career job
- Get married
- Get a house
- Having children
- Provide for that family
This is the blanket I am referring to, the blanket that society is putting on our 20 year olds. If people in their 20s have not reached any of these, that is when the depressions starts and it will be hard for them to find their way. I was expected to do all these steps in my 20s and by the time I reach 30, I was supposed to have make my comfort in the blanket and make my home. This blanket is more like the rules of 20. By the time you turn 25, you were suppose to be fully graduated , married and maybe a child on the way and a career right? That sound like the prefect picture, perfectly painted and no smudges, no mistakes.
If we fall out of the normal, we are viewed as different and unliked. We are viewed as someone who will fail, someone is different. Not because they will fail, but because we do not know what will happen to them. They took a path different than ours. They took a path that we do not understand.
Sometimes, we have to learn and teach ourselves to reach beyond our blankets and into the stars or into ocean or maybe into other places. Nothing comes easy in this world and slowly we expect things to be easy. As we enter the world at the young age of 20, we expect older than us to have followed the rules or at least know what they are doing. But, the reality is, they are stumbling around as much as you are, just with more experience. Making a mistake at 20 , is life lesson for us. Not only does it affect us, but the people around us. Not only does it just hurt the people that were in house, but it hurts the people in the world. So when a young person makes a mistakes, it is like the whole the world is watching and waiting for someone to fail. Someone to be judged and someone to make us feel better about ourselves. That is just being human, so when these younger adults come into the world, they are being judged based off things they do not know yet.
By the time I turned 25, I began to fall into depression, but all around me my friends were moving forward in this “society driven” world. I was stuck! I was stuck!! I did not have a big house, children. I did look at the pros in this situation, at least I married, but was I happy? I was stuck in a dead end job that I knew I did not want but, in rules of society “You have to do what you have to do..” right?
I would dream about having children as 25 and a big house with nice cars and a good job. But, those were all just dreams at that time. Realistically, this could be possible, but I had to step out the normal to find my new normal. I had to step out of this blanket and find my own blanket in this world. I had to step out of this blanket of comfort and safety , the place the I knew and where I grew, I had to find see the realities for myself. I knew that I could not listen to the “whispers” of society or listen to the judgement as I worked by way out of this blanket. I had to just do it.
When I step outside my blanket, I was faced with losing friends, being far apart from my family and expected to survive on my own. I was expected to do things that were already done for me. My parents had everything setup for me, but I wanted to start over. That is what scared me the most, starting over. My parents invited me to stay at their house to help me, but I knew I was never be truly happy under this blanket. I had to form my own blanket, I had to find my own way. This left fear in their hearts, because anything could happen, Anything was possible. I was miles away from my dads help and my moms hugs. I was miles away from my comfort blanket.
Leaving behind 8 years of experience in Early Childhood Education, leaving behind my old experience in everything that I knew. I started over. I applied in a new career, not knowing if it would work. I went for something that I knew would bring me out of my comfort blanket. I spent 2 years losing weight to get into the Air Force and throughout those years, I still had no idea if I would reach my goals. I still had no idea of I would retreat back to my blanket. My family comfort blanket, living with my regrets.
I wanted more, I wanted to see the world and explore my options. I was 26 at this time and I knew that if I did not make my change, society would snatch me up and I would end up just surviving and not living. I knew I would just go with the flow, and wishing and wanting, but never doing.
So, I close the blog. Remind you do not live with your regrets or your fears, because you will never be truly happy. You will never be truly were you belong. Do not just settle for one way, because there are so many options out there, sometimes you may just find your new self along the way. You may find something you did not even know about yourself. Open your eyes to the world.