As people return to elementary, secondary, college or university, for the first time I do not have to enter a learning institution. After two years of kindergarten, eight years of elementary, four years of secondary and three years at Durham College, I am now part of the every day working world.
For the kids that have returned to school, I have some advice. While the process of reaching your career appears to be long, savour the moments with the people that you meet throughout this process. After going through the education system, I have met many friends that I am still in contact with today. I do admit, there are some days that I wish I could relive some of the fun on playgrounds during recess, or just chat sessions in between classes.
As we get older, our perceptions of time increase, and it seems that individual moments flash by. That is why I think everyone should learn to enjoy the small moments. Every small memory that could turn into an interesting story when you are older is important. Because one day, those people you spent many years with with spread off to other places in search of their dreams, and you may not have as many opportunities with them to hang out and have fun.
I think sometimes as human beings, we are too fixed on the bigger picture and we just focus on how to get from point A to point B. We tend to forget to remember and enjoy the small moments. The work-life balance does not start when you enter the workplace. You should have a mix of fun and work as you go through school or you might burn out. I remember an interview I did in college with child development expert Dr. Stuart Shanker where he told me that one of the things society is fighting is that the comparison of test scores has caused an almost overworking mentality for children. The small fun things are getting lost to the bigger picture of work. Slowing down and returning the balance of work and socialization time is the cure.
Now seeing people returning to school is not the only bittersweet moment for me, as my sister Katrina has officially taken the next step in her learning adventure. This weekend, she officially moved into Kingston, and her residence at Queen’s University.
It is an exciting, as well as intimidating, time for her, as she starts a new adventure. It’s also an odd feeling for my family. We have become so used to living in the same house together for many years, that it is odd to not have her presence around and to see her room unoccupied.
But, as my sister begins her new adventure, I wish everyone else good luck with the next chapters of their lives, and I am excited about continuing this chapter of my life.