I’ve been home for a week, and I’ve got to say, it has never felt so good. This week, I have done all the things I didn’t have time to do over the quarter, like drawing, writing, catching up with old friends, and best of all, sleeping. I forgot what it was like to sleep in my own bed.
As much as I have caught up with people, talked about college, and taken time for myself this week, it has also given me a lot more time to just think. For the past year, as of May, I have been working on this drawing of each of the Hogwarts crests together on a page. It’s quite complicated and takes my complete and utter focus in order to get it right. In the process, I’ve realized that some of our best work, or better accomplishments, require us to be doing nothing else at the same time.
Some things require our undivided attention. That being said, I am now beginning to understand one problem; it almost seems like nothing I have done since I got to Cal Poly ever truly had my full attention. I never stopped multitasking.
That’s the funny thing that I discovered about college and the schoolwork it involves— all of the classes almost seem like distractions from each other. Question is, is it all simply a distraction from something else, a to-do list per say? Let me explain.
Between the classes, the social life, the clubs, and the attempt at figuring out college, it was all multitasking. Maybe there was too much to do without enough time to just do it all one by one. From what I could tell, even if we tried, we might stop in the middle of one assignment to remember another task we forgot to do. Ever been in the middle of relaxing with friends before looking at the time, seeing 11:34, and remembered a bill you forgot to pay or an assignment due at midnight?
Just because we multitask doesn’t mean we remember to do everything… If anything, I think we may actually be more unproductive than ever.
7 days back at home and it’s given me time to slow down, to focus on one thing and actually finish that drawing I told you about. Being back on familiar ground, driving on familiar streets, I am even reminded of how easily time passes while we do other things with our lives. In visiting my advisory teacher whom I had for the same class with the same people all four years of high school, I got to take a look from the outside to see all the freshman students who have now taken our place. This is their start, everything is still so fresh and new to them. They’ve got choices to make and a path to take those first steps on— that’s where we used to be.
And now we’re here.
Today I got a chance to catch up with an old friend who is a grade above me, someone I was lucky enough to run with from sixth grade through to my junior year of high school. We talked about college, about life and where our paths are headed now. I’ve been out of high school for almost a year, she’s been out for almost two, and yet we’re both still trying to figure things out. I guess that never really changes. Looking at her, I could almost see that time that had gone by; she looked a little older and more mature than I remembered.
I wonder if that’s how I look to all the people I went to go visit.
Because now, I’m on a different path than I thought I would be when I started high school. Is that a bad thing? I’d like to think it isn’t. Personally, I would like to think that the paths we take and the turns we make along the way all put us where we need to be. Sooner or later, none of the things we do are distractions while each and every one of them are no longer just a to-do list.
Sooner or later, I hope that the things we do are exactly what we want to be doing, and if not, I hope that they will help us get there. At least that’s what I’m striving for in my future.
So here’s to my last quarter of freshman year being something more than multi-tasking. And here’s to each and every one of you finding something in the world that means enough to you to give it your full and undivided attention.