I was lucky enough to grow up with some of the strongest women I think I will ever know.
My grandmothers taught me to love everyone and that education is important.
My aunts taught me that no matter the job, I could do it.
My older sister taught me you can be beautiful and smart.
My roommate taught me to see the strength within myself.
And finally the most important woman in my life, my mom. My mom taught me that I too can be a strong and caring leader.
All the women I just listed made it possible for me to do whatever I want and instilled strength in me.
In one week I’m going to walk across the stage to receive my undergraduate degree. I'll walk into a world full of possibilities, but I have no idea what I’m doing.
I’m that kid who wanted to be everything. I wanted to be a painter, a piano player, a fashion designer, a chef, a lawyer, and an accountant.
Today, I know that I could do any of those things, but I still don’t know what I’m doing.
I struggled in school because I was only interested in learning about what I enjoyed and not, necessarily, what they were teaching me. I thought I wanted to go to art school, so I focused on building my portfolio instead of my geometry lessons. I went to one college because that’s where I wanted to be at the time, but after a year I transferred. I majored in accounting because a teacher told me I would be good at it, but then a semester before graduation I changed to marketing.
I still don’t know what I’m doing.
I worked at a publishing company in London, while studying abroad. I got to work with people who had a great deal of confidence in me and trusted me with a lot of responsibilities. At first, I found the big sales projects they charged me with extremely intimidating. But with their trust and encouragement I learned I could handle it. Because I got to oversee these deals, I was able to work one-on-one with our CEO.
While shadowing such a successful business person, I learned I too wanted to have my own business, but I still don’t know what I’m doing.
Every time graduation comes up I’m asked, “Do you have a job?” and “What are your plans?”
I tell them, “I don’t know.” Because I still don’t know what I’m doing.
What do I know? Well, I know that I can do anything. I could go back to school to study fashion. I could follow in my mother’s footsteps and work in travel. I could start my own business right now.
That’s the hard part. There are so many things that I want to do that I can’t just pick one. What if I end up picking the wrong one?
The frightening part of making a decision is the possibility of failure. It’s always in the back of my mind.
Today I had my final critique in my painting class. Every one so far has gone miserably. Today was different. My professor told me that he was very proud of my work and that I needed to be more confident.
He could see the confidence glowing through my art and the personal style that I had established through my time spent in the class. It took a lot of failures and wrong decisions to figure out what I was doing with my art.
What do I know? I know what I’m passionate about. I want to be a spokeswoman for young girls in today’s society. I want to have my own cosmetics line. I want to work in fashion. I want to write my own book. I want to be a leader. I want to be a mom. I want to change the world.
I know that I can achieve all my hopes and dreams and make all of the incredible women in my life proud. I know that one day I can be proud of myself. I know I want to say yes to more things. I want to do more things that make ME happy. I know that I don’t want to play it safe anymore; I want to take more risks so that I can learn more about myself.
I know that everything happens for a reason and I’ll have to make a lot of decisions in the future. I know that these are all important things that I need to tackle in life, but, I still don’t know what I’m doing.
It’s all going to be trial and error and one day I know I’ll figure out what my purpose is in this crazy world.
One thing I can confidently say is, today, I’m still figuring out what I’m doing, and that's okay.