"Have you heard that So and So is moving to South Africa?!"
No way!
"Did you know that Blah Blah just quit his job and is backpacking across Europe for little to no money?"
"What about You Know Who that just got married and landed this total corporate job in New York City?"
Seriously? That's awesome!
"I know. And, Blah Blah's twin sister just had a baby and is living in the new house that she and her husband built themselves last year."
Wow. I can't believe how fast things are happening.
"And, get this. Mamba Jamba just broke up with his girlfriend--the one that he dated all through college and moved in with him last year. I heard he's now dating this other girl and it's pretty serious."

It recently hit me that the above "dinner date/coffee date with college friends" conversation template has existed in my life for the past two years or more. Rolling up on the beginning of the fifth year being out of college the feeling that life isn't going to slow down any time soon is becoming solidified, and I'm torn: part of me thinks that it's a great time of our lives--the world is at our fingertips and we have so many options; the other part of me is longing for some sort of stability and homogeneous lifestyle that existed for the first 18 years of my life and semi-continued for my college years. We had friends whose residences never changed; houses that we knew were home; jobs that at least gave us spending money; homework that would get itself done eventually; clubs with weekly meetings; and futures that seemed predictable.

This is not the case, and the further away we get from such a life, the crazier it seems. Our friends are getting married, having children, moving, changing jobs, meeting new friends, starting to date for real. And, while I feel like I'm grasping for something to hold on to, the only thing I have is a small foothold, and that's the fact that we're all doing the best we can for ourselves. None of us find it easy to say good-bye to old friends, cities we've grown to love, and places that have more memories attached to them than most others. But, we all know that for us to dream we need to let go of some things, and move forward. We need to allow our lives to change and allow the others around us to change as well. Some of us may have a friendship whose light is starting to flicker and will soon burn out. Some of us may have a job that we hate, and are giving up a steady paycheck in hopes that furthering our education will be a risk worth taking. And, others of us are starting families--the biggest life change of all.

Trusting in change is risky business, because there is no foreseen outcome, and I am admittedly one of the scardiest cats of them all when it comes to believing that change is worth the risk. But, if we don't take the leap of faith that will get us further in the lives that we've dreamed of, then what's the point? Nothing stays the same forever, and if it did, we would find something else to freak out about. I keep telling myself that the choices I make are the ones that I wanted. Sometimes I have to tell myself over and over again, just because with information about all my college peers floating about I begin to doubt myself and where I'm going, what I'm doing. I know it's not much, and this is very much unsolicited, but the advice that I offer to my friends is to do what you think is best FOR YOU, and never regret that decision. When you look back and wonder how things could have been different had you chosen the other option, pat yourself on the back, because you made the absolute right decision. No regrets. Live the life that you've always wanted, and do what it takes to get there. Life will surely change with every decision you make and with every decision that your friends and loved ones make, but embrace the change and let life take you where it will, because when you look back ten, twenty years from now, it will all have been worth it.


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