I was going to be an engineer. I was going to have a doctorate. I was going to join engineers without borders. I was going to help people. I was going to make a difference in my own way.
I took the first step. The first few steps, even. Went to a specialized high school, ran the robotics club, built robots as independent research projects, got into a college with a great engineering program, and started on my way.
Well, the classes sucked and I was miserable and I woke up every Wednesday wanting to cry when I realized I had to sit through a three hour Fundamentals of Engineering Design lecture. I failed physics even though it was my third college physics class and dropped my calculus two class even though I had a ninety nine average through all of calculus one. I did not drink enough to blame alcohol for my shortcomings in the things I used to be the best at, and I did not sleep enough to blame not trying. I tried. I tried with everything I had, and yet, the only thing I managed to ace was humanities. As a mechanical engineering major.
Needless to say, I had big dreams, none of which could be fulfilled by what was proving to be minuscule ability and rapidly dying motivation. This whole past semester I have tried to find the ambition I needed. The ambition to go to my engineering classes, to study for physics, to become an engineer, to push towards that doctorate. Even with my dead ambition and the feeling of my soul withering inside of me, I did these things. I went to my engineering classes and I studied for physics and I tried to become an engineer. With each new day, I tried a little bit more, and each time it was a little bit more than I could take.
Now, here I am, planning to transfer, or maybe even not go anywhere at all. I want to write books, short stories and novels and so much fiction. I have been told that I have the talent, I know I have the ideas. The money? The experience? The time? Those I have none of, and I will not be getting any of those from college, especially as an engineering major. College is taking my money and my time and giving me connections in the wrong field. I could go to college now for journalism, start making the kind of connections I need, increase my chances of getting a job I will not abhor and making money. Yet, that would not launch me into what I actually want to do. It will take more money, and more time, to keep making more hardly useful connections, and give me experience in one field, without even guaranteeing a job the way my engineering major did, and definitely not guaranteeing enough money to get to where I want to be. I need to experience life, the world, cover as much universe as I can. Live, learn, experience. That is what I need. Not that you seem to have any value in this world unless you have that one extra line on your resume.
My heart breaks a little more every time I hear or see the word engineering. Typing it hurts because it feels so familiar, so safe. For the first time in a long time, I have no direction, and god, do I hate it. I miss the thought process, the drive that having a goal gave me. Now? Now I have nothing. My plan was shattered, a plan I spent years formulating. I do not even have a vague direction of where to go to use as the basis for a new plan. I am lost and stumbling and I have so many people screaming that I need to know NOW NOW NOW. And, of course, they are right. I do need a plan, right now, right this very second. I am too old to have no direction in this fast paced world; I am an adult now, who needs to make adult decisions about my life and my future.
It is too late to turn back. Too late to not waste my time in a technology and science based high school (not to say nothing good came of it, my English teacher for three of the four years improved my writing beyond what anyone else could have), too late to apply to the right schools and give myself a chance to learn some of what I need to hone my writing skills, too late to not waste my first semester of college in classes I physically could not care less about. So, since I cannot go back, I must go forward. Not that I have any idea which way is forward at the moment.
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