Going into college, I had my entire life figured out. I knew what I was going to do, where I was going, and who I was going there with. I was so lucky to know my path before college even started. I just needed to enjoy the ride. For the first year and a half of college, all was going according to plan. I studied elementary education with a minor in special education. Reaching the end of the fall of my second year as an El Ed Special Ed major I had fallen into a slump. I felt pretty down for a while and semi-jokingly (more seriously than I would have liked to admit) called it my quarter life crisis, and looking back, I tend to have at least one of those a year now. Lots of things seemed to be changing.
I began noticing that everyone seemed a lot more passionate about teaching than I was. I began to check out during class and doodle far more than I was listening. It wasn’t until the end of spring semester that the thought of teaching art crossed my mind. I thought it would be a good idea to ask my advisor about it to see what her opinion was. I told Kathy I was thinking about switching to art education and she took from my telling her, in a very passive Mennonite way that I was switching, and she sent me down to the registrar to change my major. Given that this was the first day since elementary school that any occupation other than teaching elementary special ed had seriously crossed my mind, it would have been completely idiotic and reckless to follow through. So, of course, I took it as a sign and waltzed down to the registrar. Within an hour and a half of wondering if I should switch, I had found myself an art education major.
Fast forward through SST and I was preparing to start my art classes. I didn’t take any art in high school, other than ceramics, because, “I wanted to take classes that would help me with college.” Now I found myself underprepared and had no idea what I was going to do. I quickly found that a combination of passion for art and a willingness to sacrifice any regular amounts of sleep, I caught up quickly. Now I’m reaching a point where I’m not even sure if I want to teach. My passion for ceramics has engulfed me.
If I was going to pass along any wisdom, because I am obviously the most qualified to do so, it would be to question yourself all the time. Doubt everything you’re doing. Be critical and know that you can still do better. If you’ve bombarded yourself with these doubts and you still feel strongly about what you’re doing, if you get excited about the fact that you still suck (relatively) and you have so much more room to grow, find joy in that. Let that drive you, knowing that you are not on the “right” path, because there is no one right path, but you are on a right path. That is where you belong.