I just graduated from Siena College with a Marketing degree. Which I have never doubted as the best choice for me. However, over the course of my high school and college career I often got rushes of feelings that I didn’t want to be near the business world when I got out of college. These were often short lived, as I convinced myself that business was where the money was, and besides, I was good at it.
But as my last year of college came to a close, these feelings came more and more frequently. Every night I would say an extra prayer to help calm myself down. And every morning I would wake up feeling just as unsettled.
I don’t want to be in the business world just yet. At least not the businesses I have been in thus far. I want to help people. I want to write and contribute to someone’s life. I want to leave work each day and feel fulfilled and I want to start the day excited at the possibility of all that I can accomplish.
I complained to my friends, and they assured me that I would find a business that does help people, where I could contribute every day and feel like I was helping. I just hadn’t found it yet.
The day before my last final exam, I was feeling a little more uneasy than usual, and I felt something telling me to call one of my good childhood friends. We are still very close, but both with our own lives, we struggle to maintain constant contact. So on my way to the library to study, I gave her a call.
When she answered we quickly caught up and I explained to her what I was feeling. I was more nervous about graduating than I had even known before. She calmed me down and said to me, “Beth, I am an Opera major. You have a business degree – you are going to be fine”. She continued on to remind me of my faith and to remember that God has a plan, and he will get me exactly where I need to be. She even reminded me that I am often the one telling this to her when she is struggling. Before we hung up she said, “I’m serious. Just stop worrying about it. Leave your intentions to God, and just give your best to what you are doing every day. You have an insanely great support system, and you will not fail. We won’t let you.”
Just leave my intentions to God? Just trust Him? Know that I’ll be fine on God’s plan?
Duh. I should’ve thought of this myself. Like she said, I’m often the one dealing this advice out to my friends, as it’s my usual go to. Unfortunately, that’s hard to remember from the inside. But she was right. So I said an extra prayer or two and left my intentions to God; He knew what was inside my heart better than I did anyway.
I concentrated on my last final. I had a good time hanging out with my friends, and I enjoyed some much needed family time. I let myself breathe. And every thought I had about my future, I veered to the man upstairs.
And that’s when I got an email from one of my closest, and favorite mentors from Siena, offering me a position at Siena, through AmeriCorps Vista. She explained that I would be a post-grad fellow at the high school I have been helping to teach ESL at for the past year and a half.
Given that this was my favorite activity that I did at Siena, I was ecstatic about the offer. I understood that I would be paid in a small stipend in lieu of a salary, which made me a bit hesitant. But really, I was so excited I cried (Bia, my temporary sister, who watched me with curiosity as I went from the biggest smile in the world, to tears in the matter of seconds, can attest). I immediately emailed back asking if we could meet to go over some specifics, and logistics.
Vista stands for “Volunteers in Service to America”. Wow. That’s just what I wanted, right? Talk about an answered prayer. There was no way I wouldn’t take the position.
So much to my wallet’s dismay, I accepted the position and I will be starting in a few weeks, and committed for one year. I will be working at both Siena College, and at the charter high school to help further education, and provide help to those in the community.
I am excited for the experiences I will receive throughout this next year. I am excited to work alongside some of the best people I have worked with at Siena. I am excited to see what kind of difference me and my team can make, and I am excited to continue along the path that God has set out for me.