It’s time for a change.
Fifteen years ago, I started school. Seven years ago, I finished primary school and started high school. Three years ago, I finished school. And two years ago, I started university.
For me, attending university was a natural course of action. The question was always one of what I would study at university, not whether I would. In my last years at school, I stressed over this question, as most graduating high-schoolers do.
My choices became clearer to me as I came closer to the end of my degree. I decided that engineering was where my talents were.
In the meantime, I was approaching having spent nine years of my life writing software. Programming had always been something that I’d enjoyed, and I’d become relatively good at it. It was natural that I could take my talent and apply it to a career.
However, I didn’t.
I was afraid that doing something I loved as a career would cause me to eventually become sick of it, and that wasn’t something I wanted.
So I chose electrical engineering, in the hope that it’d be similar enough to what I’d done and enjoyed previously, but different enough to prove a challenge.
I’ve just completed the second year of my five-year degree. This year, I failed four subjects: three math subjects and an electrical engineering subject.
It’s not that I found the subjects particularly hard. They were challenging, certainly, but it wasn’t impossible to overcome that.
No, instead, it’s that I stopped caring. I stopped caring about my grades. I stopped caring about what I was learning. I just didn’t care.
For the most part, I’ve found my subjects to be quite similar to subjects at school. You put in enough effort, and you do well. The material you learn is sometimes interesting, but mostly you just learn it to learn it.
But I have noticed one important thing. The subjects that I care about the most, the subjects that I enjoy, and consequently, the subjects that I do best in are the computing systems subjects.
For me, the logical puzzles and strange syntax just click. When given problems to solve, it’s intuitive for me to look at them and immediately have the outline of a solution in my head. I can see the solution to problems before other people have worked out where to start.
I look at a problem and my immediate thought is to work out how to solve it. I love the challenge presented, and I love making things that solve it.
And yet, I continue studying the other subjects in the vain hope that I’ll learn to enjoy them just as much. Someday, I think to myself, it will start being enjoyable.
I’ve changed immensely in the past two years.
After leaving home, mainly for practical reasons, I’ve become a different person entirely. Although I love my parents immensely, I could never really become an adult until I’d moved out. I didn’t know this until after the fact, of course.
However, there was one significant part of me that didn’t change: my plan in life. Up until I left home, I’d stayed the course. I’d moved from school into university without a second thought, just because it never really occurred to me to do otherwise. I hadn’t really considered my choice, if you could even call it that.
But as I grew as a person, I realised that I needed to reevaluate. While continuing on the path had a familiarity to it, I couldn’t ignore the other possibilities staring me in the face.
I’ve always said to myself that I’d rather do something I loved and earn a pittance than do something I hated and be rich.
However, I don’t think I’d ever really thought about just what that means. It was a set of empty words to me, not something I truly lived my life by.
I think it’s time that I stopped repeating hollow phrases to myself and actually did something about it.
I’m dropping out of university to follow my passion.
It’s a decision that I should have made a long time ago, and I regret not making it earlier.
I still have concerns that I’ll end up hating what I do, but change is something I have to accept and deal with if it happens.
Maybe this is change for the worse, and I end up deciding this isn’t what I want to do. I’m okay with that now, because at least I will have tried.
But maybe, just maybe, this is the best decision I’ll make in a long time.
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