Uber” was a superlative
Mornings were optional
Chris Brown was nonviolent
Seasons are changing faster. Parents are getting older. And adulting is a full-time job. I remember there was a time when I couldn’t imagine myself driving, when I freestyle rapped on 3-way, and when fitting my hair into a high ponytail was the most stressful part of my day. Fast-forward, here I am, “adulting” – I can have friends over anytime and I never have to eat meat loaf again.
"When I grow up" is here, and it’s time to earn my own “McDonald’s money”.
I think it's fair to say that working wasn't as daunting before it was mandatory. I had no complaints when I got a high school summer job at Granny's Funnel Cakes inside Six Flags. I was able to eat dessert, see my friends, and make $7.50/hour all at the same time. Life was good.
Since then, I’ve graduated from college where words like passion, profession, and monthly payments are everywhere, and my career trajectory is at the forefront of my concerns, accompanied by “bae” watch, hair health, and meal prepping. Socially, I've positioned myself in a network of New York City “young black professionals”. This network affords me access to a group of relatively recent graduates that note their occupation in their GroupMe aliases and who swiftly transition bar discourse from exchanging names to somewhere between “what do you do?” and “what college did you attend?”. If you’re not affiliated with an acceptable profession or university, you can't [drink] with us - *removes from group.
While being a part of a network of talented, driven young black people can be inspiring and is cool to tell your grandma (who has a framed family portrait of the Obamas in her living room), it can also be a source of anxiety. While I’m sure most millennials are completely secure with their place in the world, I struggle to verbalize what it is I even want to do. I follow motivational bloggers on Instagram, pray, and occasionally watch the OWN Network. Still, I haven’t transformed into Willow Smith and transcended to a life of avocado smoothies and sunrise yoga (metaphorically speaking).
In smaller groups with close friends, we bond over mutual sentiments of confusion and frustration, yet I still fall into isolated ruts of anxiety and insecurity. I fear stagnancy through not fully identifying and executing my life’s purpose, and I fear I will be left behind if I don’t figure it out…yesterday.
While “trusting the process” is easier regrammed than done and your fake deep followers are as inspiring as gluten-free quinoa, good vibes and positivity are not lost, and for those moments when you have to lift yourself out of self-doubt and self-loathing…
Be honest with yourself.
Focus on yourself.
Peace...soon come - Ivana Tucker