Routine is what has kept me sane over the years. When I was little, my bedtime routine was nothing to be tampered with. I had to first touch both of my nightlights, then climb into bed with my blanket right next to me and my pillow lying as flat as possible (I strongly disliked fluffy pillows). Since kindergarten, school has been my routine, my safety net. It’s what I’ve used to mark time: “That happened during fourth grade, sophomore year of college, etc.” Now that I’m about to graduate college and be done with school for good (potentially), part of me wonders what I’ll use to mark the time and differentiate the years. Will everything slowly just start bleeding together?
As much as I fear becoming imprisoned by a new routine, I also fear having no routine at all. I don’t know life apart from school, comparing class schedules, prioritizing homework (or at least trying to), ordering textbooks, etc. And while I do have some plans lined up already, there is still so much up in the air, so much I don’t know. Many of my peers who I’ve talked to feel the same way as I do—stuck in this uncomfortable transition period and wanting something to be “settled.” But maybe there’s excitement in the unknown and freedom apart from the routine I’ve always grown up with. Maybe this transition period is coming at a time when I most need it.
It’s hard to see when all of my subconscious stress has started slowly bubbling to the surface. And as someone who tends to view the glass as half-empty, it’s easy for me to only look at the negatives of this season. I think, though, there are ways in which routine has become an idol in my life. Something I’ve been depending too much upon rather than God himself.
So maybe I need to take routine off of its pedestal and look ahead to post-graduation life as a new adventure. Scary as it seems, I’m looking forward to seeing it unfold. And I guess the no homework part will be pretty great too.