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Have any of you guys started college late?/personal rant

Sorry for the off-topic after the jump.

Illustration for article titled Have any of you guys started college late?/personal rant

I wasn’t really sure whether to post this as it seems too self-interested and uninteresting but I value the Oppopinion too much not to and had some shit to get out. If you want to ignore the nonsense in the middle, there’s a poor excuse for a summary at the end.

I went through high school pretty anonymously, perhaps struggled with a bit more “baggage” than most, and generally failed to motivate myself enough to do very well for a sustained period of time. Still, I did fine and managed to get into the three schools I applied to (which amounted to about every appealing-but-realistic, in-state university for which I had not missed the deadline). I did not really have any extracurricular merits to speak of and felt fortunate and somewhat surprised to have such an opportunity, but I knew from the past several years of denial and futile attempts—since the time I lost interest and stopped performing beyond expectation—that I was jumping in the waters of further education with pockets full of lead. The depression and apathy that I blew off and was guilted by in the beginning were more difficult to overcome years later by the end, and it was long past being a vicious cycle. While I could carry on and get along with about anyone, I had formed no meaningful relationships (friends or more than that) and had as many non-social accomplishments to claim. Something needed to change in my attitude to get through college, let alone get through effectively.


I decided erroneously, judging by this posting, that I should chase a dream of travelling to Cuba to essentially improve my outlook and gain a reinvigorated perspective on life. Not to mention potential fodder for a stronger college application, of course. To simplify it at the risk of sounding idealistic, I was going to leave my problems at the doorstep. I reasoned this out in logical terms, but as justification more than scrutiny of the idea. I decided that I would work a joyless job for a bit more than four months and use that extra cash to briefly experience a different way of life. I started work, the vague September deadline went by, and I kept working to sustain that familiar routine. By the time I forced myself to move on from the unproductive monotony I had willingly entered, it was April.

I swore that I would get moving on things then and there, and I will spare you the details aside from the fact that one Cuban acquaintance who offered to let me travel with him in early July went MIA, but I am now up shit’s creek without a paddle in April... by which point I had initially planned on re-applying after having carried out my plans and returning with an improved outlook on life. To address my hope of having an improved perspective, I do think that part of me does value the chance to go to college and all that entails on a subconscious level. However, I look at the present reality and realize that I wasted an entire year now and inevitably more because I can go to college in spring at the earliest. And while I am fortunate to simply be able to do such a thing, that fact negates whatever positive outcome came of largely fruitless work and time.

If I can still do the trip, I will. But if I cannot help but write off this year, I just want to get back on the horse and move on with my life. That’s something that I could not honestly say before this all transpired, which perhaps shows an intangible benefit. I wanted to force myself to change more drastically, to come away feeling more encouraged or interested than I do now, to do what I had planned to do to the effect I had hoped it to have. While in a way, I think that kick in the ass might have worked, I do not know whether I can make it happen or even if I should from a practical standpoint. Maybe I should buy a plane ticket now and go for broke, or maybe I should accept the loss and hope that I can move on where I could not before. I guess that what I’m asking is what opponauts, of whom the vast majority are more rational than I am, would do.

Sorry, again, for the self-absorbed stream of consciousness.

TL;DR- If you were unable to do a certain critical thing or feel a certain way, created a plan to help change that, set aside a dizzying amount of time for said plan, and completely slept through the deadline with little of the desired result, would you fall further behind your peers and out of practice to execute the plan or try to cut your losses without being convinced you have changed in a meaningful way?


Also, has anyone started college a year or two late or in the Spring? If so, I would really appreciate a recollection of your experience. Thanks in advance to anyone who made it this far.

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