Thursday, 17 July 2014

Turning 20: A New Chapter

So it has only really just dawned on me that I would have been alive on this Earth for 20 years by the end of this week. That amounts up to 240 months, 1043 and a half weeks, 7304.84 days, 175316 hours, and I don't even want to list those seconds because its scary to think that I am here now, after all those long days and short hours and man did that speed by quickly. I've never really been that type of person to look forward to saying that I'm now a year older because I've always been content with the age that I am. Part of me is so looking forward to being 20 but a whole lot of me feels a little cautious about it. I mean, that's it. I will officially be in the adult category (well, technically speaking that's at 21 but it's practically the same thing in my book). Entering the world of the 20s seems to me like it is filled with new opportunities, experiences, friends and so much more and that I am really looking forward to. What's scary is that I still have absolutely no idea what I want to do. I mean, I love marketing and I'm really enthusiastic about the research behind understanding those processes and I really enjoy it, but is it something that I enjoy or is it a prospective career? It's confusing because I never thought I'd be lucky enough to ever enter into a job where I would enjoy each working day and now after having studied marketing as part of my degree I feel as though that opportunity is now on the cards and that excites me. When I first started university I said I wanted to be a journalist because I couldn't think of anything else to say when tutors and classmates asked me 'so what's your plan post graduation?' with a glint of wonder in their eyes as to what the future me would look like. I guess this stemmed from my love of writing and I still think it's amazing that, through these little shapes I am some how magically able to communicate with you and express my thoughts and feelings with what is really is just a bunch of squiggles and lines on a page. I love to write. My number one dream would be to get published, to have my name at the bottom of a cover or a final verse in someone's hands and communicate to them endlessly throughout history. Well, perhaps not throughout history but as long as people would want to read what I have to say I suppose? We eventually stop breathing, stop speaking, but words on a piece of paper will forever remain and to me that's just so incredibly powerful.

By time I graduate I will still be 20, which is so daunting and I can't believe that it will all be over in less than a year now, but whilst it scares me a little, I'm more excited than ever to leave university with a degree under my belt, and I feel lucky that I am able to do that before I even reach 21 because it gives me the time to take a masters degree if I want to, it gives me time to go travelling to the places I've always dreamed of visiting, it gives me time to really try to achieve my dreams and it gives me the time to put into perspective what it is that I want to achieve before I reach 30; which I am very thankful for because if we are here now, already at 20, then my guessing is that 30 will come by a lot quicker than initially imagined. I want to make something of each day and at the end of each week I want to be able to list the productive things that I did that week so as to run onto a new page. I don't want to waste any time that I have on this Earth any more because it is only now that I realise just how much I could have done if I had believed in myself more and had the confidence and time to do so. I look back now and see that my greatest barrier was my education, sucking up all my hours, wearing me down as to not have the energy that I needed to spend time fulfilling what I wanted to, rather than what other people wanted me to; but whilst it may have been my greatest barrier with regards to time, it has to have been my greatest asset as to give me the skills necessary to hopefully enable me to achieve those dreams that I so long for. Each element taught me something different, of course, but I really feel like I am at that stage now where this is the final hurdle and I can get there and I will be able to achieve it because of all that time and effort I put into all those exhausting years.


After having achieved a 2:1 class degree for my second year of university I feel now, more than ever that the following year is my time to shine. I've never been one to swat for hours in the library, complete all the readings on the list, start my deadlines or even revise for exams a week in advance, but next year I am determined to switch that around. If my natural ability means that I am at the level of a 2:1, imagine what I could achieve if I were to really knuckle down and put in those hours that this past year I neglected? By no means will I be disappointed if I don't graduate with a 1st class degree overall as I started university with the mindset that I wanted to get a 2:1 out of my experience, and I am determined to achieve it, anything above that is simply a bonus I guess. I'm hoping that if I knuckle down and work hard I'll be able to secure that grade which would be the perfect finish to the past 16 years of education. Do I want to take a masters? I'm not sure. Initial thoughts are yes it would be lovely to achieve an MA. in something, but do I need it? No. Is it worth the money? I'm not sure. But I still have a year to think it over, so I guess what will be will be.





My main aims and goals for this next chapter of my life are a little scattered, and arguably don't all inter-wine with each other well and are bound to change as I enter into and explore my new found options but from a 19 year old's mindset these are some of the key things that I would want to be able to look back on when I reach 30 and think, wow, I did it.


1) Graduate with a 2:1 class Bachelor of Arts degree.


2) Hike and explore several national parks (being the huge nature lover that I am - the key two that come to mind are The Lake District and Yosemite) and travel to at least three new places I have never been before.

3) Make sure I take the time to be happy and enjoy myself. If I feel stressed, I want to make the time to go to a yoga class, or treat myself to a massage if it is needed, and not ignore my stress.


4) Find a job that I feel happy doing. I don't even care about the payslip, what's important to me is to find something that I feel comfortable doing, that I wake up looking forward to and which leaves me with a smile or at least thoughts of productivity when I return home. In my eyes, there is nothing better.

5) Move out. I think this is an obvious option for most people in their 20's but I really am looking forward to moving into a space that I can call my own, that I can treat as a blank canvas and splurge all my creative ideas to express, in a material nature, what it is that makes me feel revitalized, relaxed and 'at home'. I don't plan on leaving my parents house any time soon, I love living with them and I feel it much more wise to save enough of a deposit to buy that apartment/house that I could imagine myself living in for a long duration, rather than settling for something lesser simply for the sake of moving out. I guess its also more confusing for me because I don't just want to live here. I want to live everywhere. New York is the top one, but the thought of moving abroad or even to such expensive cities is daunting, and I know that that is definitely not something I would want to spring straight into anyway but who knows where life will take me? My friends and I have already started discussing possibilities of living together in Central London when we've all graduated which is of course exciting, but it doesn't help calm that ever growing feeling that my future is just coming at me, like a beam of light that I can't run from or escape and have to face whether I'm ready to or not.

6) Get published. I've always lovely writing poetry and have been repeatedly told by my family and friends that I should get some published, but I've never really known how to go about it. Who do I contact? What about copyright? Do I want to be published online or in a book? Is my work really good enough? I really don't know, but I am excited to delve deeper into the world of writing and I hope to rise from the other side with some published work under my belt. Never have I ever felt so enthusiastic about doing something so I really do think that it is a milestone that can happen in the near future.

7) Find someone that makes me happy? I'm perfectly happy with being single, I seriously have no idea why some girls focus their main thoughts and emotions on being in a relationship. I've never really felt like I needed to be in a relationship as to get by but I think this is because all I have endured is bad experiences on that part and I've always been pretty independent. I'm not going to go out purposely looking for a future partner, but it would be nice if I happen to find someone that I could imagine spending a good portion of my life with.

8) Learn to drive and buy my own car. Due to health issues I haven't been allowed to apply for a license and I need to go at least a year without any problems before they even consider giving me permission to sit behind the wheel. I'm happy to say that I'm nearly there now, it is coming up to that year and touch wood I can get through it and continue onwards with such reduced symptoms that I have to say, I have been very much enjoying!

9) Make sure I stay in touch with the people I want to stay in touch with. When you're at college or university, you're very fortunate as to see the majority of your friends 5 days of the week due to the necessity of weekly timetables, but when all that goes away and I enter the world of work which demands my time to be spent with a new set of (hopefully) friends, I don't want to lose those that I hold so dearly now. I want to be one of those people that can laugh alongside old friends at 30 remembering those embarrassing stories from when we were teens. I think that would be lovely.

10) Blog, and keep blogging. When I first started blogging I'm not really sure if I had any 'goals'. I had just started my second year at university and after having wanted to start up a blog now for literally years I just decided that, if I wasn't going to start then, I wouldn't ever do it. I have in the past started blogs before, but after a month or two something else in my life would become more demanding and then sweep away any time for blogging. Now however, I am much more in charge of my free time and the fact that I managed to maintain and uphold my blog despite of university, deadline and exams demands, I managed to keep writing and doing what I wanted, whilst also working three jobs during that period too. I have gotten to that point with my blogging where people are starting to read what I have to say, and every time that someone either comments or tweets me telling me how much they enjoyed my post or liked my pictures it honestly means the world to me because it's given me that confidence to believe that yes, I can be my own person, people do like what I have to say and I am doing something productive in my free time that I enjoy, and its making me enjoy my week a whole lot more. If I'm having a bad week, I can turn to my little space here on the internet and either discuss those negative feelings or explore something more enjoyable and excitable which really does make me feel better and I love that. I honestly don't care if I never earn any money, or if I never become the next 'blogger sensation' because I love that I can just sit here, write, share my life and experiences through photos and engage with people like you, reading this, talking about the things I love.

In saying that, I doubt anybody got to the end of that huge ramble but I wanted to write this more as something for me to look back on in the future to either laugh at or think yes, I did it.
So here goes! Hello world of the 20's.

Hannah 
x
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