Serious Stuff

Life After Graduation

My sincere gratitude goes to the Almighty Allah SWT, my parents, my brother and my sister, my relatives, my teachers and/or lecturers, my best friends, friends, fellow coworkers, and everyone who has always been so supportive and made it possible for me to pass my thesis defence. I have passed and had my commencement day on 02nd September 2014.

And that is not all I wanted to say, that is not all that I have in my mind.

Now that (you and) I have graduated, so what?

My Commencement Day

My Commencement Day

Like the famous author, John Green, wrote on his book, ‘the world is not a wish-granting factory.’ these post graduate activities I have slowly started to erode my confidence that all my wishes could come true.

I used to think that life after graduation would be so easy. It’s really easy to think that if you got your degree, you could get that dream job you had always wanted to pursue, build your career in the name of passion, meet the man in your life that will eternally love and support you.

I did also make a 5 year plan and daydream of better days, but these post-graduation things are seemingly to go against my will, or our wills. Yes, I refer our to you, my fellow just-graduated friends, and I.

That 5 year plan of mine includes getting a good job right after I graduate, doing my Masters degree at the age of 23, meeting the love of my life before I turn 25, and above all doing all of those plans with happiness that follows.

But the reality begs to differ.

I know some of you (or perhaps all of us) are now struggling to get a new job, but finding a good job turns out to be difficult for all of us, fresh graduates. You send lots of applications to a lot of companies, hoping one or two of them will hire you but they never call back. You do not give up, you keep trying and trying and trying.

Until you finally get that ‘oh okay I’ll work here for one year then I’ll find a better job‘ kind of job. Case closed, everyone is happy– or not.

So, you’re excited. YOUR FIRST JOB! Woo Hoo! And that’s how it eventually leads you to follow the-so-called Jakartans’ typical routinity.

You wake up at 5.30. You then pray and ask God for the health and wealth of your parents, your family, your friends, yourself. You pray for your life.

And so then you get ready to work. But you spend some more minutes of laying down in bed before you really get ahead.
You’re late. On your way, you’re dealing with the bad traffic. You’re walking but the person in front of you walks very slow. And then there’s this couple ahead holding hands and blocks your way. It does not stop until you get into the train. The train gets very crowded you could barely breathe. As if it is not frustrating enough, you have lots of unfinished works waiting for you in your office.
Those works seem eternal. So you just sit there in your office chair, wondering when will life get better, when will your life turn out to be what you had always expected before.
But your work cannot wait so they interrupt you.
You get back to work, they are still unfinished but it’s time to go home already.
On your way to your home, you are again to deal with millions of people commuting on the same train, wanting to meet their loved ones at home as soon as they could be.
You feel right knackered, you feel like you are going to sleep just right after you reach home.
Then you reach home, but you do not feel sleepy at all anymore. You talk with your family, you play with your pets.
Then you go to bed, but no you’re not tired nor sleepy. The thoughts of how your life should have been strike again right before you close your eyes. Now there’s nothing to distract you from them.
You feel depressed and unhappy.
It seems like you are the only miserable person on earth.
But you finally fall asleep anyway and then the next morning you will wake up and do the same routine all over again.

And so now tell me what fun part of it that I am missing?

Oh, so yeah…
You get all the money you want.
You are happy on your payday.
But then what does it get you?
Not even a single happiness guaranteed.
You do not even have time to have fun with all that money you earn.

But you keep going on anyway. Because you hope someday you will break this cycle. You hope someday you will be able to taste that shiny sparkly better happy life everyone has, with your dream job, still.

And I tell you, my friends, you are not alone. We are all experiencing this right now. Those 2,800-ish graduates from our university that have just graduated together with us are probably going through this phase or ever went through it. And that excludes thousands of graduates from other universities who probably are experiencing the same thing.

It is not going to be easy. Hell no. It’s gonna get rough! You will have to face a lot of rejections, you will have to get stuck in some dead-end jobs and it’s awfully painful. But you know what, we are humans, we are natural born fighters. And our ability to be resistant to a lot of rejections is what finally gets us to that spot-full-of-happiness we want.

So, if you still wonder the obvious, where does that ability to survive and be resistant to lots of rejections and handle the pressures going on in our lives come? Hope, my friends. After all the beatings and the falls, your hope keeps you going, it keeps you alive. It keeps you stick to the core of your 5 or 10 or 100 year or eternal plans of life, that’s doing all your plans with happiness that follows.

Keep your hope alive, and it will keep you alive.

Buena Suerte!

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