Quarter-life crisis

College students fear uncertainty in their future

A professor stood in front of my lecture hall recently and asked me how old I was.

I answered I was a week from 20, excited about my second decade was coming to a close and adulthood was nearing.

At that moment my professor smiled, looked me in the eyes and said, “Mr. Watt, do you realize that you could be five to eight years away from marriage and your first born child?”

The room went silent and I sank in my seat. Where did my teenage years go? More importantly, am I ready to be married? Does college ready me for my foggy and uncertain future?

I have pretty unrealistic expectations of what my third decade will bring in terms of employment. I want to be a journalist, broadcast or print, and I want to work for a major sports network. How realistic is that?

While there may be jobs out there, it may be near impossible to find a salary suitable for living expenses in the field of journalism.

Essentially, what this realization boiled down to was “Am I ready to be an adult? Will I be ready by the time I graduate?”

Today I find myself more uncertain than I have ever been about my future. What are my fallback options? Will I learn them in college? How long until I know if I picked the right field to study?

If you were to look back through this story, you would see a truly ridiculous amount of question marks for the space this piece is filling. It is so fitting to the way I’ve felt about my future and the way many of my friends feel at this moment.

My roommates have repeatedly told me that I have my life together and I’m overreacting. Earlier this week I found myself paying bills and pausing only to realize 19 years had blown by me and I was in such a hurry all this time to move out and grow up.

Do these parties and this environment truly help me to be an adult in the near future? Does this culture or phase teach me the lessons I need to know in order to be successful?

Change grips my life currently. Unfathomable months ago, I have found myself in a position of strength here in college, though I am not sure how I reached this point, and not sure of how I would get to this point as an adult.

The college degree I will receive in a few years seems as though it is far off, but I don’t know if I will be ready for the real world. Is my degree a license to be an adult?

To be honest, none of us are truly ready for the real world. By your senior, year you may feel some sort of annoyance with the petty issues of college, but many of those whom I have met here are not going to be ready to accept reality at 21 to 23-years-old.

My quarter life crisis is plaguing me currently. And now I am left to continue to sift through the haze, hoping for some sort of golden lesson of life that does not come.

I am not ready for the real world. I don’t know if I will be. I have my enthusiasm for life and passion for my field to keep me going at this juncture, but am unsure it will take me where I need to be.