Congrats, Grad! Now what are you doing with your ENTIRE life?

My only child is graduating high school in a week.

One week.

Insert ugly mom cry here.

If you slow the world down for a moment you can probably hear the cracking of my heart.

It’s all the emotions having a battle within.

My son came home a few weeks ago and showed some frustration with the pressure of it all.

‘WHY do people always ask what you are going to do with your whole entire life? That is a lot to think about’.

That truly got me thinking about the pressure that we place upon ourselves and others to know what we are doing with our entire world at age 18.

If I think back to when I was 18, I do remember that same pressure.

That pressure led me to go to college right away and inevitably led me to feeling lost almost instantly.

Society said that I needed to know my path NOW.

My brain said, wait … slowdown. I need a moment.

I should have listened to my brain.

I ended up pushing myself to go the ‘right path’ and it led me to not only feel lost, but also become a bit lethargic and eventually depressed.

Spoiler alert, I didn’t finish.

So, when my son came home talking about these decade old pressures of new graduates, I had to stop and think about how I address students entering the adult world and workforce.

I have most definitely placed that pressure unknowingly on new graduates.

When my son was looking at continuing education, he struggled not knowing what the ‘right’ choice was.

When I asked what he meant by right, he said a 4-year university.

Why is that right?

Why have we allowed that to be seen as the only right way?

We sat down and looked at Universities, Community Colleges, and Tech Schools.

We explored the differences.

We wrote down the financials that each would require and compared that with what he could ultimately make once he was out of school.

Cooper has chosen a Community College and plans to go for Radiology Tech.

He initially wanted to go into nursing and although the interest is still there, we explored the ‘work smarter not harder’ theory.

If he starts in radiology and gets his foot into a medical facility, chances are they will help him go through nursing school should he wish to pursue it.

As I watched him come up with his plan, I couldn’t help but be proud of the way I handled it as a parent.

I could have said sure, college is great, and you should go to a 4 year!

I could have let him bury himself in debt without fully knowing the path he truly wanted to be on.

I also was so proud of him for looking at the pros and cons and realizing that for HIS life, he had to make a plan that made his heart and soul comfortable.

The credit union financial counselor in me was beaming.

Most adults know that there is not a singular path to success.

Life likes to throw some squiggles in your lines.

You must learn to pivot quickly.

You must adapt and grow with the ever-changing roads.

Sometimes success is instant.

Sometimes it takes longer than you’d like.

Sometimes you are young and at your peak!

Sometimes you are in your 40’s and just finding out what your passion and purpose is.

All those scenarios are a success story and it’s our duty to share with one another how ours can look differently from another’s and still be amazing.

Nanci Wilson

Nanci Wilson

Nanci started her credit union journey due to lack of kindness. That fact is what led her to close her bank account and open up at a credit union. Ultimately ... Web: Details