So Thanksgiving is coming. As is Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza, New Years, and a variety of other holidays that are lovely, of course, but also always include that one (just one if you’re lucky!) awkward aunt or uncle that wants to examine your life choices and make you uncomfortable.
Okay, that’s dramatic. We’ll give them the benefit of the doubt and assume they are just curious about our lives, but either way they ask the questions.
When are you graduating? What’s your major (cue side-eye when I answer English and Journalism)? Who are you seeing? What are you doing after graduation? What are you doing with you life? Why don’t you know, you should know you’re an adult now and you’re stupid if you don’t know and the world is your oyster and you kids don’t even have the decency to explore it in fact in my day we walked uphill both ways in the snow just to see an oyster….
My family is crazy.
I’m kidding (mostly) but that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t make me uncomfortable to explain that no, I don’t really know what I want to do yet (unless writing books and drinking coffee counts), and I don’t really have a plan after graduation (unless following the Boyfriend to whichever city the grad program he gets into is located in because I don’t have another plan counts). I don’t really plan to use my journalism degree (my bad), and I don’t know if I want to go to grad school.
This is really the first year I’ve actually felt this way, but since I am, I decided to come up with some ways to deflect or end these conversations.
1. Lie. Oh I’ll work at a magazine. I loved working at my college publication. (Hints of truth in every lie.)
2. Be vague. Oh, I’m keeping my options open. There are just so many things to do with a dual degree!
3. Pick one of your options and say it like it’s true. I’m loving my publishing internship, so I’m looking into publishing for sure. It’s great.
To be fair, I am actually looking into publishing, I do have options (I just don’t know what most of them are), and I’ve considered working in magazines. The point is having prepared answers so you don’t wobble, panic, and end up in the bathroom with your mom sobbing about your life (or worse! Encourage advice).
Just be prepared and save yourself the awkwardness. And awkward aunts and uncles of the world, if you’re reading this, please stop asking questions we dread. Ask us how things are, what’s been going on, or if anything exciting is happening. Believe me, if we have something to brag about we’ll do it.