This morning on my way back home, I was thinking about how people are so “worried” about ME graduating, while I am not. I am not saying that I don’t care, but the speed at which I’m moving forward to IT is best for me.
According to society’s “standards”, I should have graduated by now, which is true, but over the past 3 years, I stopped living my life the way people expect me to.
In the middle of FALL 2015 semester, I decided, that it would be my last one for a while. At first, I was worried because of what my mom and others would say; and I was right: they had a lot to say. However, I had a good reason: I was wrecked by my father’s death; I felt alone. So, I wanted to pack and go home(Haiti) to my mom, to my family since I felt they were the only people who could psychologically support me, even though I benefited from some good therapy sessions at Brooklyn College. The day I made that decision, I remember that I was on my knee praying, and crying like a baby. Plus, I was listening to a Benedict Lamartine’s song – *Lè’w Nan Tray*– (To my non-Haitians, he is a gospel singer, one of my favorite.).
Originally, my mom did not agree with me. My brother and other people thought it was a recipe for disaster. Well, I didn’t care because I needed a break. I remember saying to my mom: “I LOVE YOU dearly and you are all I have left, but I am, for sure, taking a semester to one year off with or without your support.” When she realized how serious and determined I was, she couldn’t do anything else but to get on my side by making me promise that I will go back to school when at some point.
Of course, everyone else had something to say about it. Worst, not directly to me which is VERY ANNOYING since they always claim to LOVE ME. Instead of trying to understand me, they were judging me by saying some pretty hurtful things.
*The day that we, humans, will learn to have our facts straight before having an opinion on someone else’s life, this WORLD will be better.*
What people couldn’t get is that I was stuck and lost, and on a mission for the School of Life to discover myself and get shaped into the person that I was meant to be by God.
During my time off school, I had evaluated a lot of things so now that I can proudly say that I know WHO I AM (still working on me). I accomplished a lot of things, too: I created a successful blog, volunteered back home, worked at my dad school, and had different jobs that I had enjoyed. In other words, along with the way, I became fully INDEPENDENT and gained MATURITY and SKILLS.
I suffered from depression and anxiety after my dad died. In one of my therapy sessions, I recall asking my therapist if I made a mistake to take some time off school because people are making me feel like a failure. Her answer was: “You are broken much and you need to put the puzzle back together for everything to fall into places.” My culture doesn’t really believe in stuff like this but I do.
So, to anyone out there who has decided to put her/his school on hold for any reason, know that you are WARRIORS for knowing what you need to do for a HEALTHY YOU. Also, you have to know that there’s NO SHAME to not graduate on people’s time.
To some people: 1) next time you see me, check on me to see if I am okay, chances are I’ll say yes, but it will help me see you in a different light. 2) If you need to ask about my school’s status, call and ask ME, not my mother, uncles, aunts, cousins, or siblings.
To everyone who has supported me throughout this journey, I SALUTE you for loving, embracing, supporting, and NOT judging me. Thank you for checking on me from time to time, or even praying for me when I asked you to. “I LOVE YOU.”
P.S: Writing this had me in tears. I guess that I am finally releasing the hurting from others, the feeling of guilt for choosing MY HEALTH, HAPPINESS, and ME, and the feeling of disappointing my parents (especially my dad) and certain people that I’m close to. But it is okay, one’s journey is usually different from another’s. I can’t be or do what people want me to do. I am where I meant to be in my life.
To anyone who keeps asking me about graduation, by SPRING 2019 I will send you the invitation. Yes, I will be 25 years old! I am sorry that it will not be on your time but on GOD’S TIMING.