My future, my decisions


As a senior in high school, everyone is asking me about myself. Only, they’re not asking directly about me, but my plans for the rest of my life. And sometimes I’m not so sure that everyone is asking to be courteous and to make a conversation, but they are asking for selfish reasons. Some ask me what I am thinking so that they can offer me their own opinions on what I have decided. Some ask because they simply do care. My future plans have suddenly become open-season for everyone else to jump in and tell me what they think I should do.

Those that I am close to now think that, because I am still young and am having to make big decisions about my life, I have absolutely no idea about how anything works, and I am clueless. They think that gives them a free pass to offer me advice on what I should do instead of what I want to do. But the thing is, I don’t have much of a choice. Obviously, I’m too young to know exactly how I want my life to be for decades upon decades from now, but I can’t do anything about that. Making life decisions at age seventeen is hard enough without getting mixed messages from every person I talk to. Some tell me that I am making a great choice of going to a small school close to home. Others tell me that it’s a bad decision, and I’m going to get bored quickly. I hear from some that teaching elementary school is a rewarding and fun profession. I’ve also heard that I’m not going to make any money and will get tired of kids.

Stop that. Stop telling me what to do. Stop telling me your opinions that I don’t want to hear. If I ask you why or why not or where I should go, then I’d absolutely love to hear what you have to say. However, unsolicited advice doesn’t always resonate as it should.

I finally made a decision about where I want to attend school, and it’s suddenly “not the right choice” or I “shouldn’t go there because…” Why can’t I just make a decision and be happy with it for once in my life? Deciding where I want to spend for the next four years- a decision worth thousands and thousands of dollars- is an extremely large decision, and I want to make sure that I am going somewhere I’m going to be comfortable and content. So stop telling me that I shouldn’t go to the school for reasons that would make you not want to go there; they probably don’t mean the same thing for me.

I think that I now know what I would be satisfied spending my life doing: teaching elementary school. I think that I now know where I would like to attend college and start a new chapter of my life. I have agonized over these decisions for months. Not knowing the plans for my future was killing me. It bothered me how I didn’t know where I would be living at this time next year, and it bothered me that there was so much to consider before deciding. But I have. I have made that choice. And no, I probably won’t stop continuously questioning myself until move-in day, but that’s okay. Because for now, I am at peace with myself, and I know what I am doing.