It occurred to me that this year I haven’t really had a chance to let things occur to me. Not in the way I normally let things occur to me.
Basically, it’s been almost two months since I was laid off, and I finally feel like I’ve had time to pause and reflect on this year so far. I’ve tried to do so before, I’ve written previous entries this year after all. But only now has it sunk in a bit.
It still floors me I moved out this year. Like, I would have never bet on that happening when it did. I thought maybe at the end of this summer I’d have moved out. Maybe. Or even this December, after finishing my Associate’s.
And I’m surprised how well I’ve adapted. It scares me how well I’ve adapted.
I don’t exactly have the run of the city of course, and I’m thankful for my roommate — without whom I would have been completely alone in a city full of strangers.
This isn’t exactly a new theme in the world or on this blog, but Real Life™ is a lot more open-ended than school (college, high school, you name it.) You have micro decisions (what to buy at the grocery store so you don’t starve to death) and macro decisions (your next career move.) When you’re in school, living at home, those aren’t your concerns. But then, all of a sudden, it’s all you are.
Speaking of career moves, I’m trying to plan the next phase of my life, but part of me hates doing it because of how many plans I’ve made in the past, and how most of them were upstaged or never brought to completion.
Like, take last October:
The past week I’ve been focusing on getting my driving license, and should have it soon. With it in my possession, I now have two paths in the near feature.
The first, I get a job somewhere like Dunkin’ Donuts, earn minimum wage or slightly above. Save the money, pay off my small college debts so I can return in January. Go places, do things with my friends — would be a first for me, really, not having a license has hampered me these last couple years. Eventually move out, finish college and basically live the life of a normal 20-something.
The second, pursue a startup opportunity that my uncle is willing to invest in. Become an entrepreneur — which means not taking a pay check long into the future. Work late nights, worry over finances and deadlines and managing my team. Have my uncle breathing down my neck, or yelling at me that I’m not making a return quick enough. Probably even go bankrupt, like most startups do.
I never got my driver’s license. I never got a job at Dunkin’ Donuts. I never took my uncle up on his offer.
I thought by thinking of two paths that I would fall into one or the other. It never occurred to me that it would be neither. But really, that’s all you can do. Plan as best as you can; there will always be unforeseen circumstances, but you take them as they come.
I know that some day, I want to run my own business. I know I’d prefer it to be in tech, but honestly even the thought of owning a restaurant excites me. But yeah, a tech startup would be awesome.
I believe I now have a plan for how to bring this future closer. Instead of accomplishing it in my 30′s or 40′s, I intend to fight tooth and nail to at least start on it next year. If I were still in school, I wouldn’t really have the flexibility to plan things like this — but I’m not in school. I’m in the Real World™, and these decisions are mine to make, for better or worse.
I’m pretty open on this blog, so I’m sure I’ll talk about the finer details later on. But 2013 is going to be a big year for me. This year was already pretty eventful, so much so I’ve barely caught my breath.
There are definitely things that could happen which would prevent me from setting this all up. A sick or dying close relative, the tech market or the entire economy imploding, some kind of national disaster. As an adult now, those things worry me when making plans like this. But I still have to do something, even if it gets upset later on.
I can’t wait for the rest of this year, because I’m planning it to be one long rampup to my personal take-off in 2013. And I can’t wait to fly.