In 3 weeks I will be 20 and packing my bags for the second semester of my sophomore year. And for once, I am appreciating how good I have it. I live in a suite on campus and when I’m at home I don’t pay rent. I have virtually no bills. My dad still gives me an allowance. Maggie cooks for us and my brother treats me to movies, coffees, dinners, and transportation for whatever we’re doing. It’s funny, on campus I felt so on my own. My days are jam packed and lately, my bank account has been on the verge of flat lining. But then I came home and I realized just how privileged I am.
As far as academics: this is the “easy” part. I have my schedule figured out for my next 2 years and, as far as teaching, things won’t be getting “real” until senior year (and a little bit junior year). No matter how many books or blogs I read about pedagogy and policy, at this point, it’s just a matter of waiting.
That being said, this is about as cushiony as my life will ever be. And it’s weird to be aware of that. But as much as I’m enjoying this, I’m realizing that it’s also time to grow up. As good as I am at ordering food and taking the train it’s probably time to learn how to cook and drive. It’s also probably time to make a budget that I actually stick to, to have a room that’s actually clean, and to figure out how the whole taxes thing works.
Before I sat down to think about it, 20 seemed meaningless. I always thought of it as being 1 year from 21–aka a significant age. And while I always recognized 20 as the official end of my teenage years, I failed to recognize it as entering the first decade of my adulthood. It’s crazy to think about how many hurdles are ahead: finishing college, becoming a teacher, becoming a good teacher, finding my own apartment, etc. I can only hope that I’ll be ready for them. But for now, it’s all about undergrad. It’s simple. So come block 5, as I struggle to understand a) stats b) how stats will help me teach highschool English, I’ll take a deep breath. Take out my work. And remind myself that this is the easy part.