I’ve been pondering any topic that would be suitable to share as inspiration. I keep feeling like I’m coming up short though.
I feel like just a plain-Jane kind of gal with fairly average experiences. I haven’t gone through anything traumatic, or hard, or anything inspiration-worthy in my opinion. I’m sure I can’t be the only person who feels that way though. So, I think this is exactly something to share because despite feeling average, I think we are all capable of being exceptional.
One of the largest shifts in my life that I am going through right now is starting school again. This is the second try at college for me as I had previously flunked out of the university I was going to. I had a lot of resentment and discouragement toward the whole situation. I felt like if the teachers cared more about the students than the paychecks they would have tried to help me more. I felt like it didn’t matter that previously I had been “awarded” scholastic competitiveness because I wasn’t in an area of entertainment. I felt jaded that someone who was likely a C average student, who also played a sport, got a large chunk of their tuition, if not all of it, given to them via scholarships because they were in the entertainment industry and that brings in money.
In my first semester I finished with over a 3.7 GPA and the academic competitiveness scholarship I was awarded was $200 which felt like a joke of “reward” for applying myself. That wouldn’t cover 1 credit at the university, let alone a book for a majority of the classes. The whole situation was discouraging because I let it discourage me. After a couple semesters, I kept flip-flopping between being an English major, or being a Communications major. I knew either one would help me find a decent job in the marketplace.
While English has always been one of my favorite classes, I just didn’t feel it was practical unless I wanted to be an author or to just have it on my resume. That’s also why I thought Communications would be a good major for me as well. Low and behold, when you don’t really feel passionate and compelled by something, it makes it a lot harder to care about.
After flunking out, it took some time, but I decided it was okay that I wasn’t in school because I felt I was wasting money on classes not knowing what I wanted to do.
It’s been about 5 years now, and I finally have aligned myself to realize the things that I want to do and the person I want to be.
When I was a teenager, one of the first times we were asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I remember that the first time I answered that, I answered that I wanted to be a marine biologist. After taking terrible quizzes that tell you what you should have a career in based on your skills, personality, interests, etc., I never really came back to that thought.
I’ve spent the last few years thinking, “Maybe I should go for this or that because I will make a really good wage.” It wasn’t until earlier this year that something clicked for me. So here I am, getting ready to head to class and typing this out for you. I finally decided I wanted to go to school for a Biology major, to work along the lines of land and animal conservation.
Turns out I wasn’t far off from what I had thought I wanted when I was a kid. I love the outdoors and living in Idaho I think I’ve been more than blessed with all the wildlife and great scenery fairly close to home. I want to help preserve that and hopefully enhance and make it better. I think we’ve all been told something along the lines of, “Do what you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life.” I’ve also been told, “You have to choose your career before it chooses you.”
Ultimately, no matter what you do, what you do or don’t go to school for, it should make you happy. If you’re waiting for an opportunity to come to you, change your attitude and go grab your opportunity. If you’ve been waiting for a sign to help you decided if that thing- a job, a career, a side hustle, a degree- is something you should go for; here it is.
This is your sign.
Life is short, and we have to make the best of it while we can.
“You can ask the universe for all the signs you want. But ultimately, we only see what we want to see when we’re ready to see it.”- Ted Mosby, How I Met Your Mother.
Submitted by: Hailey Smith
I've actually been saving this story since September of 2019 because I thought it was the perfect story to start the new year. This year I wanted my focus on how important "ordinary" stories are. These are the stories the bind and weave us through the everyday. You see, your ordinary is someone's extraordinary because what seems insignificant to you may be another person's mountain. Won't you be their guide and share your story?
Thank you Hailey for sharing your story!