Graduating from one of Mzansi’s to Universities
“If you’re not happy just quit, and keep hunting for your happiness.”
Many a time we are told to follow our dreams, to do what feels right to us, to do what we love. But, how many people have told you the honest truth that the road to passion is full of hurdles, frustration, poverty, and aging. Your parents always ask you when are they gonna see the fruits of their money.
I’ve spent twelve years in school, plus four years as an undergraduate, mommy funding my education. The day finally came, Black gown, going up on stage, the best day of my life. I left the school ground (the haven) and spent another three years “hustling” jumping from one space to another. The more I shifted, the more I lost financially. Let’s face it the hustling game is full of tears and disappointments. It is full of hard labour; you have to spend in order to make your name, to get the so-called experience- glorified in every workplace you. I have jumped from internships where I was making enough to get to “work” just in the name of experience. At some point I settled for less (nothing) because sitting at home watching TV the whole day is quite depressing, I went for an unpaid internship because I needed a job and having a done a degree that they do not believe in at home was not helping.
No one told me the industry I love so much, the job I want ain’t so glamorous if you don’t know people. I have gone from pillar to post hoping that they will eventually take me in. I have done so many odd jobs just in the name of passion. However, as years go by I have realised that passion ain’t enough if it’s not gonna put bread on the table. Age started to work against me, still being under mama’s care, running to the bread tin as my Lil sister, being financially dependent on my mom is not the glamour I envisioned.
If I knew then what I know now
No one ever told me that I am doing a degree that has an 80/20 percent chance of ever getting a stable job. An 80/20 percent chance of doing what I truly love. Eighty percent settle for what comes their way to a point of changing their career paths and some within the 80 percent continue the hustling. They do not truly understand the frustration of the 80% out there. The 20% that is fortunate, continue saying do not lose hope, not knowing that it is a tough industry. You rejoice if the first place you intern in give you a permanent post or a fixed contract.
Moving from one space to another got to me. It got me thinking if passion is the way to go. Should I just settle for any crappy job offered to me because I cannot keep on relying on mom to support me? To fund my lifestyle (which is non-existent at this point).
Disappearing from the public space
You become anti-social as the masses would say, they do not understand that socialising is financially daunting. You become content with the indoor life because that is all you can afford. Passion starts to haunt you, as you continue doing none paying jobs because everywhere you go they shove experience to your face.
I believe I might have been too impatience, to a point of landing in four different environments in a year, two looked promising but the space wasn’t conducive enough for my creative flow. Perfection landed on my doorstep but there was something missing. If only I was told that when you get what you want, high chances you will hate the space and all you gotta do is suck it in. On the other hand, you might get the perfect space but the job ain’t what you want.
The school you choose does not always guarantee a brighter tomorrow
Life as a graduate from one of the top Universities in South Africa has made me question the reality I was told; “Go to university X & Y and you’ll be in a better space of being hired after graduation. You won’t even spend a year at home before you get the perfect ideal job, and you shall see the fruits of your labour.”
Four years at the edge: sweat, tears, suicidal thoughts, what kept me going was the idea of a perfect tomorrow. If I knew then what I have experienced I would have chosen another degree, and passion would have followed. Life ain’t fun when you have no control of your situation, knocking at every door, and having all of them shut in your face.
I lost hope, even though the spark in my eyes is still there, I ended up going back to my childhood dream- as a dreamer, there are a billion things I have to study.