I’m sure I’m not the only one who is constantly asking myself this question. What if I did this? What if I said that? There’s so many possibilities that float around based on whether or not we do something. It got me thinking…
What if I never went to grad school?
Immediately there are a few things that come to mind in answer, the most obvious being that I wouldn’t be in so much debt. While I had loans from my undergraduate degree, they didn’t even amount to half of what I paid for my Master’s degree. I may have already been able to pay a significant amount of my other loans down. It’s not like I’m actually using it right now, anyway.
But aside from not having a huge amount of debt hanging over my head, I feel like I would be on a different path. Right now I’m a writer for the online portion of an automobile magazine. I started going to school around the time I applied for this position as a way to make more money to help pay for school. However, there are so many other things that I could have done that maybe didn’t pay as much but were still exciting opportunities. I don’t know if I would have found this job or if I would be working at it.
However, I feel the most important takeaway from not obtaining my MFA in English would be that I wouldn’t be so centered on my writing and trying to get my name out there. The classes forced me to hone certain skills, to develop an almost different style and way of looking at life and my art. It was tough–mentally and emotionally–but It made me stronger as a writer for it. I don’t know where I’d be if I didn’t have those classes to push me and make me go outside my comfort zone.
This is something that I think about quite often, along with a few other things, and it just makes you wonder where your life would be if you didn’t do something, or if you made a different choice for a big life event.
Where would you be right now if you changed one thing from your past?