Tuesday, March 8, 2011


February 24, 2011

It’s 2:55AM and I should be writing my Fiche de Lecutre for Musique et Politique, but I am in the mood to write on the blog instead.  I’ve been thinking a lot about going back to California.  I mean when am I not? But lately I haven’t been thinking about how much I want to be back there but by when I get there life is going to start running into me full speed.  I will have to start making decisions that affect the rest of my life.  I mean I know I have already made those decisions like what kind of grades to get in high school and where to go to college, but now are the actually hard decisions.

I’ve always been ambitious.  I know this about myself.  It is the reason I chose to come to Paris for the year instead of the semester.  I had to prove to someone (not really sure who… most likely myself) that I could do it.  I think that’s the reason I haven’t had alcohol yet.  Sure, nominally it is the deal with my grandmother, but every time I saw someone underage drinking I reaffirmed myself that I could do something they couldn’t.  I don’t want anyone to think that I think I am better than they are for not drinking, but its one area that I can be proud of myself in.  I only know a few people who had no moral objection to drinking alcohol, yet still waited. 

All of that is beside the point.  My ambition has led me to do some pretty amazing things.  Like I said, it is why I am here for the year.  It was why I studied in Nice when I was in high school.  But it has also led me to develop, well I’m not sure if it is a fear, but a stubbornness that refuses to let me quit anything.  I know that it has blinded me to some opportunities that could have been amazing.  I don’t regret the decisions I have made, because they all have led me to this point in my life.  But I do get really worried for the future.

I’ve been talking a lot with my friends about what I want to do after graduation.  For most of my college career the plan was to go to law school.  Spending my Junior year abroad, I wouldn’t have time to properly study for the LSAT so I would have to take a year off after I graduate.  That leaves the problem of what I will do in that year.  I know I want to stay in Los Angeles, but I am not sure how that is going to work out. 

I’m also not sure if law school is even the plan anymore.  Working at the FVC this last summer opened my eyes to a whole new realm of career I hadn’t thought much about before.  I think I would really enjoy the travel industry.  I love sharing what I know about places with anyone who will listen.  I love organizing things.  And I love hearing how the work that I have put in has paid off and made someone else happy. 

And then there is teaching.  I love teaching.  Tutoring these kids has taught me how hard it is, but how much fun it could be.  Going to school at LCHS I had every kind of teacher imaginable.  I had the most incompetent teacher I wondered how they ever got their credential.  I had the most self-absorbed egomaniacal teachers that I wondered why they wanted to get into teaching at all.  I had teachers who made no impact on my life, that were nothing special.  And then I had teachers that showed me things and taught me things I never thought I would know.  Every single teacher at that school influenced how I see the world today.  To have that affect on a child’s life would be incredible.  And I have both positive and negative role models to base my teaching career off of. 

And then there is being a doctor.  I’ve always been passionate about trying to help others (I know, I know… I sound like I should be on Miss America), but honestly its true.  I know it’s cliché, but at this point we all should know how I feel about clichés.  And being a doctor would allow me to legitimately show people that I am intelligent without coming across as an arrogant ass and help them at the same time.  Win for me, win for them.  And thanks to organizations like Doctors without Borders I could go around the world to places where I could actually do real substantial good.  (Side note, to any and everyone who is going to tell me that considering how much I complain about France I wouldn’t last a week working with DWB thanks, already had that conversation with myself). 

Finally there is the job I have told myself I’ve wanted to do for the last four years.  Politician.  Y&G gave me my first experience at campaigning and it SUCKS.  But the reward is totally worth it.  I love talking about the issues (although I don’t know anything about them) with people who feel passionate about them.   It may be growing up in a family with my brother constantly arguing with me (now that we’re older its all in good fun, but when we were younger…) and a father and stepmother who are great lawyers I have always seen the law as something fun and interesting.  The more I learn about the nitty gritty political campaigning the more I think making those connections and networking would be something I would enjoy. 

Hence my dilemma.  I don’t want to make a wrong choice.  I have spent countless hours trying to think of all of the choices I have before me and trying to see which ones are the most appealing to me.  The problem is I have no real sense of any of them, maybe with the exception of law school.  But I can think and tell myself how hard med school will be, but until I’m there it means nothing to me.  This study abroad has taught me that.  I have no idea how to prepare myself for the future.  I can tell myself to get ready, but until the time is upon me, I got nothing…

I could go apply to work at a Club Med after I graduate.  I could go do Teach for America.  I could wait a year, get a job that will pay for rent/expenses and study for the LSAT.  I could go get a part time job and take the prerequisites for med school at a JC.  I could go work in Washington DC.  I could go teach English in the South of France.  Every single one of those is a legitimate possibility in my mind.  And I can guarantee that when my family comes over on Sunday for our trip to Morocco this will be a very big conversation topic.  What will I do with my life?  What are my plans after graduation?  Have I thought this through? Blah…blah…blah…

I know they are worried about me because they care about me.  They don’t want me to waste anything that I have been given, which is a lot.  I want the same thing for myself.  But I’m just not sure how to do that.  At this point I’m still trying to not screw up and fail out of my courses here in France.  I still need to get through the remaining four months.  I’m worried about what my life is going to turn out like and I haven’t turned twenty-one yet. 

Just take it one day at a time A.J.  And don’t make fun of the irony that you’re using the AA slogan.  There’s a reason they use it.  It works!

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