Punk Writes

Best Friends Aren't Forever: Reflections on Being a Decade Removed from High School

Hello to the 12 or so people who might read my blog posts! This is just going to be an introspective look on the last decade of my life. Today, June 22nd, marks exactly 10 years since I graduated high school. Now, I could lie to you and say that, when I was 18, I was excited about the future and had a plan for my life, or at least for college. That would be a pile of bullshit, though. What I actually remember, is sitting on the bus on the way to "project graduation" texting my dad so that he and my older brother could log into my account for college and accept enrollment, or something. Yes, literally the day I graduated, I changed my mind about going out of state for college. I was absolutely terrified about the future and honestly thought I wanted to become an FBI agent but at the same time realised that was a ridiculous goal.

Was staying in-state the right call? Most certainly. I was only an hour away from home, as opposed to about three, and it saved money. I made some amazing friends in college, some of which I still have. I also realised I was bisexual and came out in 2013, I think? Now, I majored in criminology, because I really did want to be an FBI agent. However, the Occupy Wall Street movement happened during my freshman year, and that quickly soured me on any sort of law enforcement. One of my professors, who taught my introductory class and policing, asked me if I'd ever thought about law school, because he thought I'd be a good lawyer, I guess? So I bought an LSAT prep book and then put it in my bedroom closet, never to be touched. For a while I figured I could become a paralegal. Then i added a minor in psychology, which I really should've made a double major. By the time I graduated, I knew I wanted to go grad school for something psychology or social work related, and that working for a few years might give me a more concrete idea of what I would want to study. For a hot minute in 2017, I was enrolled in a post-baccalaureate program for speech laanguage pathology, before inevitably losing interest.

What would I tell my 18 year old self to major in if I could do it over? Honest answer: either English or Journalism/Professional Writing. They have such a broader application when it comes to jobs or potential careers. What's hilarious is that people in high school assumed I would major in English because I always liked reading, which was my response for why I wasn't going to. Yet now I find myself wishing I could get a job that involves writing. So here I am with a blog that I manage to post on once every few months, wondering if getting a second degree would be worth it (answer: doubt it).

Anyway, uh, this was supposed to be a retrospective about high school, oops! So, let's talk friendships. I haven't seen or spoken with my best friends since graduation. Okay, that's not entirely true. I texted one of them in 2012, basically to ask if we could sill be friends. Her response was basically to say that she lives in D.C. now so she didn't see the point; I could still see her talking on Facebook with my other best friend, whom I'd known since third grade, despite being at school in Boston. I used to get really upset when thinking about the friends I used to have, only recently has that changed. I think about who I was in high school vs. who I am now, and, in many ways I'm very different. It's okay to grow apart from childhood friendships, or to outgrow friendships at any point, honestly. I had one friend, with whom I'd been very close in middle school, suddenly take offense over things I was posting online back in 2014. She messaged me about on Facebook and then blocked me before I could respond. She didn't want a dialogue or for me to actually understand why the things I was posting were upsetting, she just wanted to call me out and write me off; that's not a friend I'd want to keep.

Millenials are starting to feel old. The youngest of us turn 25 this year, the oldest are turning 40. I factually know that, at 28, I'm still young, but please don't remind me that children born in 2000 are old enough to drink this year, or that the 20th anniversary of 9/11 is this September. A few years ago I went to see Green Day, and the venue was 16+. Someone had brought their 14 year old kid brother, and I was like, shit, you would've been three when American Idiot was released. I wonder if that's how original fans felt in 2004, after all, I was one when they broke into the mainstream. I kinda assumed I'd have my life a bit more together 10 years ago; I never expected to be living with my in-laws. I never planned on working in direct support with the intellectually/developmentally disabled population, and while it's not what I want to do for the rest of my life, it's a fine job for now. At least there's solace in the fact I'm not alone in feeling a bit lost with this whole "adulthood" concept.

That's another thing: adults are lying to you. No one knows what the fuck they're doing. The world is in crisis and it probably won't get better. Go to community college and then transfer to a four year school if that's what you want. Actually look at careers related to fields you're interested in, and be honest with yourself about if you'd be able to do them, not just if you want to. Carefully consider if student loans are worth it. I saw a post the other day where someone has over $500,000 in student loans, with $60,000 in interest. They're a dentist. Honestly, if you can, go to school outside the US, that'd be my advice.

That's all I've got to say for now. You can be on the lookout for a post about Bo Burnham's latest Netlifx special Inside, I don't know if it'll be a review or response or analysis or what, I just know I want to write about it but haven't figured out what to say yet.

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