When I told my sister I bought pink overalls, she laughed. Like a lot. Then said something about how she wouldn’t even let her 1-year-old daughter wear pink overalls. Never mind the fact that they came with buttons attached but no holes to fasten them with, and the hooks for the straps required assembly, I ignored the teasing because knew I could rock them. I think that the pink overalls is either me style, or I'm reverting to childhood because real life is coming for me.
Tests, papers, and projects are slowly dwindling down and I am 1 research paper, 2 exams, and a mobile app prototype away from being completely done with college. That reality is hitting me harder everyday, especially with the daily text countdown from my dad reminding me of exactly how many days are left until graduation. A kind gesture from him that makes me feel equally as loved as it does panicked.
College is almost over, and I’ve never understood more of what Taylor Swift meant when she said she’s happy, free, confused, and lonely in the best ways. It’s miserable and magical. There isn’t a better way to describe leaving a place you love, and stepping into the unknown.
To answer the all too frequently asked question, “what’s next?” I thought I would answer in a very adult way.
I have no stinking idea.
(If you have suggestions, feel free to contact me because my temporary gig will end around August.)
I think the craziest thing about ending this season, is that while it is only four years (or five, or six, or however long you need) they are of the most transformational and molding years of your life. I’ve learned, grown, and changed. I’ve walked through some deep valleys as well as some some pretty sweet mountaintops. These have been some of best years, years I’ll always remember, but I’m rejecting the idea that they are my best years. College has been one of the greatest seasons, but I think life is only going to get better.
C.S. Lewis said, “there are far, far, better things ahead than any that we leave behind.” If you don’t already have that painted in calligraphy on a canvas, you should. The idea of leaving somewhere you love is nerve wrecking, yet the idea presented by Lewis is calming. God isn’t going to pull you out of something and not place you in something better.
Transition is hard, and with newness comes refinement. In the coming season(s) I will fail, I will struggle, and I will long to be back in a season that was comfortable, but I will also be made into something new. Isaiah 43 explains this so well, “Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert” (vs. 18 & 19).
I love this because it’s talking about the old and new exodus, calling the Jewish exiles to not live in the past but to look at God to bring them home. I especially love the word picture of the second part of verse 19, He’ll clear a way in the wilderness even when there isn’t a clear path, and he’ll provide relief and refreshment when it doesn’t come naturally. God cares more about my refinement than my comfortability. He is going to provide what I need to survive (praise), but even greater than that He’s going to lead me when I can’t see. He loves me too much to leave me where I am, and He pursues me to stretch me.
So here’s to college, pink overalls, one direction, and new beginnings. The best years are only ahead.
College Grads, what advice do you have for me to transition into this new season well?