Life: Where I am vs where my college degree suggests I should be

I’ve had a fair bit of pressure lately to get a full-time job. Both from others and from myself, there is an expectation that, since I’ve got a degree, I ought to use it instead of working what some people might consider a dead-end job.

And when I see my peers, the people I graduated with all getting jobs and starting their careers, it’s all too easy to fall into a cycle of beating myself up for being behind.

I have to constantly remind myself that I made a decision to live a life quite different than many of my peers.

Many of them are taking jobs and moving to new places. I did it a little differently. I took a husband, and moved to a new place. And while it gets discouraging sometimes, feeling like I committed career suicide in moving to Modesto, I have to remind myself that this is what I wanted. All I wanted.

The pressure to get a job in my field, to have a career, is pressure to pursue a goal that has always been secondary. Yes, I’m one of those women who wants to be a wife first, mother second, and employee third.

That doesn’t mean I don’t want a career, or that I am telling myself to settle for a career that isn’t what I really want, what it means is that my life is mine, not any one else’s, and I can’t determine my success based on how I compare to others.

We all have various goals and they are all ranked differently. The choices we make determine where we end up, and the only one who can definitively say a choice is good or bad is ourselves. If I’m happy with the job I’ve got now, happy with my husband and the life I have, no one can (or should) convince me otherwise.

Life is a constant learning opportunity. And I’ve always been one to learn by doing. And right now, that means being confident in where I have chosen to be, not putting myself down because my life looks different than others around me.

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