As uncomfortable and frightening as it is to admit, I know exactly what will happen to me in the next four months. I’ll graduate from college, move back in with my parents and begin looking for a job that will hopefully lead into a career. Therefore, going home this winter wasn’t just about relaxing from a chaotic semester. It was, in part, a way to remind myself how it is to live at home and what it will be like going back.
That said, going home wasn’t bad, as my negative tone might suggest. It was a pretty fun three weeks, filled with activities, good food and a lot of family time. I’ve reached an age where fights with my parents and my sisters aren’t the only way that we interact; we can get along and have fun together without my teenage angst getting in the way. My home is a lot more peaceful now than it’s ever been. Sure, fights still happen sometimes, but the dynamic has changed so drastically that it’s hard to remember why we fought like we did when I was younger.
That aside, honestly, there is a part of me that’s embarrassed to go back. I should be moving forward, not backwards; have a job set up already and an apartment to move into. Today’s world has changed, and the post-collegiate culture has changed with it. Living with your parents after graduation is pretty commonplace, a smart move that more than a few of my friends are making, if they aren’t running off to grad school instead. But I can’t help and remember when that wasn’t the case, when this was the move that you made when you ran out of options.
Going home like this won’t be a walk in the park. It’s a strange sort of feeling, doing something familiar and unfamiliar at the same time. I’m going home to the house I’ve lived in all my life, but I will be at a stage in my life that’s only been a far-off eventuality before this moment. A post-grad, looking for a job and the start to the “rest of my life.” It’s almost too hard to picture, going out to interview with companies while sleeping in my childhood bed; that same, almost too short twin bed with lilac sheets that I’ve had for a decade.
This clash of past and present, of change and sameness is strange. So strange, that it makes me uncomfortable even though it’s not happening yet. The two pieces of me have begun pulling in two different directions. I imagine that it’s due to the cusp of transition I am balanced on, slowly tilting forward to look at abyss of adulthood.
And that’s a little terrifying, but there’s nothing to do but go forward.