I am an 80s baby and one the greatest untruths passed down to my generation was that if we went to college, our entire lives would be set. All we needed to do was pick a career and be loyal to it for like 30 years and wait for that retirement to kick in. However, once the late 90s kicked in, we realized that was a bunch of BS.
I graduated with my bachelor's degree in journalism in 2004 and worked in the industry for five years. Throughout that five years, I saw so many people get laid off and fall out of love with the industry. Most people didn't fall out of law with writing, but it was the corporate craziness and the low morale that accompanied it. Eventually, it got to me. The stress was causing my hair to shed like crazy and me to spit up blood on a too-frequent basis. Also, I was thinking what if I decided to have children or get married one day, my hours would not work. At the time, I figured it was time to look at greener pastures and go a route that I thought I never would- graduate school.
Fast forward to May 2011, I graduated with my Master's degree in Library and Information Science after quitting my job, dropping everything and moving back to my hometown of Detroit. Was it worth it? So far, I would say yes. I have a fellowship and I am enjoying what I'm learning.
I know it appeared to be a dramatic change, but it still never ceases to amaze me when people compliment me for being so brave. I was reminded of that a week ago when I was out with a group of ladies. A couple of the women in the group had quit their very good, stable jobs. One had decided to attend law school while the other one just decided to take a break. And all the people at the table complimented us for our bravery in taking the road less traveled.
I can't say much about being brave. Losing our damn minds maybe. But I don't know about brave. I just know that there comes a time when you've decided that you have had enough and realize you can do something about it. Yeah, it can be scary as hell especially when you realize you have gone way off course. But all great ventures involve risk, right?