When You Know

When You Know

This time two years ago I couldn’t make up my mind on what I wanted to do with my life.

I had finished high school, my exams were done and I’d graduated, but I still had no idea what I wanted to do next.

I knew I’d go to university, I knew I didn’t want to take a gap year, but as for what I’d actually study… I had absolutely no clue.

I applied to a random assortment of courses, and I got into aviation, radiation science and medical science, all in different states at different universities.

So, I moved to Adelaide, enrolled in medical science with a plan to transfer to nuclear medicine as I had an affinity for nuclear physics.

I spent my first semester trying to convince myself I was just getting used to my course and I was only having a rough time because I was taking subjects that I hadn’t before.

I was passing, doing kind of well even, understanding chemistry even though I didn’t take it in high school, but something was fundamentally wrong.

I just knew that this wasn’t the degree for me, I couldn’t see a future where I was doing something I enjoyed.

It’s not that I didn’t enjoy parts of it, it was the realisation that the parts I didn’t enjoy weren’t actually worth it, there was no end goal.

I chose medical science because I thought it would give me more time to figure out what I wanted to do, but when we had to start to look at subjects for second year, that would dictate what we could take in third year and then where we would end up post graduation I knew I wanted out.

I’ve talked about my struggles with mental health here before, but being already in not such a great place made this decision harder.

I didn’t trust myself, I didn’t know if I really didn’t want to be in my degree or if I just had this negative outlook because of how I was feeling anyway.

But, I followed my gut and put in a transfer request to journalism.

This was a relief, but it was also terrifying.

While I was more secure in this decision, the prospect of changing degrees and hating it, finding out that it was me and not the degree was just awful.

So fast forward to now, I’ve finished my first year as a journalism student and I could not be more sure of where I am.

I love what I’m studying, it’s a perfect fit and I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.

I don’t have all of the answers, I’m still indecisive about what area of journalism I want to work in post graduation, but I’ve got time.

I don’t regret last year, it got me to where I am now and I’m so grateful for that.

I’m well aware that I’m not the only person who feels like this, and if this resonates with you at all the only advice I have is to give it a go (even though I recognise how incredibly privileged that is), you’ll know when it’s right, but stick it out long enough to be sure, everything is an adjustment.

Back yourself and how you feel, and if you’re going to take chemistry at university without taking it at high school, the extra classes are worth it, trust me.

Love,

Mal xx

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