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The first Monday of the rest of his life.

03 November 201309:10PMlife

I finished uni.

I thought there'd be more to it than that, y'know, emotionally speaking or something. Some kind of revelation that Yes, This Is What I Am Doing!, or even a Yes, I Have Finally Found A Place To Be Myself And Grow As A Person!. But, no. I was pretty much already doing what it was that I want to be doing and being a person anyway. So really, no major life changes there. Maybe I wasn't trying hard enough?

Self referential humour aside, I'm really glad I wrote that. Mostly because it was great fun to read, three years(ish) after the fact. I'm going to try to replicate that, because I reckon in a few years time, this'll be just as much fun.

So obviously I haven't finished-finished. Unlike the one big First Day of starting, finishing is this whole pile of little milestones. I still have two reports to write, and two exams to take, and a bunch of paperwork, and then I believe there's some kind of hat throwing ritual or something.

But I don't have any more classes. The routine part - and the actual learning part - has ended. And I think bittersweet is probably the most apt term for it.

On one hand, it's been total blast. A more-or-less continuous cascade of low- grade hijinks. This year at least, largely centred around a frisbee team who hang out on a couch in a library and drink flavoured milk and play cards and never play frisbee. Or do any work, apparently. Now there's a recipe for a sitcom if ever there was one.

On the other hand, this is now acutely and irrevocably in the past. And even if it were to continue, it'd never quite be the same. I'm left with this feeling that I've experienced something incredible, but that I can never quite get back. Or, apparently, properly articulate.

So uni isn't a thing any more. At least not for me.

At this point, I've been in school of some form or another since I was 3. Finishing is a weird, weird feeling.

School has always been a thing. Since I can remember, pretty much. Without it the future seems amorphous. Vague. With nothing to give it any shape. I don't have any way to predict what's going to happen, and whenever I try to my mind just seems to shut down. Education is supposed to prepare you for the Real World, or whatever, but I've never felt less prepared for anything in my entire life.

This is a bit scary.

A lot of people have suggested the option of going back, to do postgrad or something. Which probably isn't a bad idea. I mean I'd like to. I probably will, eventually. But doing more uni just because you're scared of facing whatever comes next and can't think of anything better to do is possibly the worst reason to do it. On the other hand, having ruled out the familiar for being exactly that leaves you with the unfamiliar pretty much by definition.

And that's scary too.

The stuff I'm interested in today, weirdly, hasn't changed much since High school. Back then, I reckoned I wanted to be a Sci-fi writer, because that seemed like the neatest intersection of my aptitudes and interests. Since then I've figured out that science communication is a thing. Which is something I wish I'd figured out earlier, because it turns out there's an actual degree for that. Which leaves with the challenge of trying to break into a field I really want to be in with a degree which isn't quite as relevant to that field as I'd like. And, failing that the very real possibility that the last couple years were kind of a waste.

And that's pretty scary as well.

But, y'know what? Scary isn't necessarily a bad thing. Scary is different. Scary is new. Scary is an adventure. Everything will, in all probability, be fine.

...I think it might even be fun.

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