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Choosing The Right Path & My Secret Dream Career

It’s 3:30 AM and again, and here I sit, awoken by some more deep thoughts about life and where I want to be. In less than an hour and a half, at 5:00 AM, I’m supposed to be on the road to Radford University to repair computers for Attronica. That’s seven hours on the road by my lonesome, which I’d usually enjoy. I love driving (especially when I don’t have to pay for the gas), but I thought I’d try and write out the reasons I can’t sleep right now to try and remain sane in the car with all that alone time to be contemplative about life.

I don’t know what it is, but when I wake up in the middle of the night like this, albeit rare, it’s usually because I’m subconsciously thinking about my life thus far. I think I’m still grappling with the fact that I’m twenty years old, for one. I may not be quite to the age where John Mayer claims he has a “quarter-life crisis,” but it doesn’t change the fact that I’m already questioning what I’ve done and what I’m currently doing in my life.

First off, I feel like I dove into the working world a little earlier than most. Sure, most people my age have jobs, and some of them have full time jobs at that (such as myself), but most aren’t doing anything “corporate.” It’s not that I really work in a corporate environment in its most quintessential meaning, in a tiny cubical doing repetitive tasks, but I still feel like I’m doing something way more “business-like” than most of my friends making lattes or running checkout lines. I have a great job, make good money, and enjoy the spontaneous nature of it (for example, I didn’t know I’d be sent to Radford until around noon yesterday). I guess doing a job like this typically held by someone much older than myself makes me, in turn, feel older than I am. I worked a similar job last summer, but only for two days a week. This is the “real world.” Okay, enough unintentional John Mayer lyric references.

The whole “feeling older” thing brings me to my next point. In ten years, I’ll be thirty. Frankly, that scares the crap out of me; I won’t lie. It’s frightening how fast you grow up and start approaching your middle adult years. I’m faced with questions such as whether I’m really “living up” my college years, which, supposedly, are the best four years of life. This isn’t college as I ever imagined it’d be when I was growing up. I’m at a school who’s “campus” is the City of Richmond and I commute twenty miles from home. It’s hard to form meaningful friendships with anyone when you don’t live on campus. Sure, I have the best group of friends a guy could ask for, but none of them are really people at VCU. I’m seriously considering whether I made the right decision by going here, and if transferring somewhere else would make me happier.

The school situation also brings me to an even bigger point, which is what I want to do with my life. I have so many different interests. I’m also in the process of creating my own business. I finally have plans to get off the ground and generate (at least a little) sustainable income with it. I wrote a two-page business plan out last night about my future plans for the site, and possibly others, and they are nothing short of big. I’m a dreamer. I could definitely see myself running this and other future sites as a full-fledged business in the future, but I just don’t know what I want to do.

I really do think I was born in the wrong decade. No, not just because I love ’70s and ’80s music, but because I’m into all sorts of interests and areas that are, sadly, kind of past their peak. One of those is terrestrial radio. Now I’m not going to be a hypocrite here. I’ll openly admit I have both an iPod and XM Radio subscription in my car, which are two big contributors to the decline in radio, but that’s mainly because the Richmond radio scene has long been uninteresting. We don’t even have a Hot AC station (stop fooling yourselves, Mix 103-7, your music mix is bland as a saltine cracker).

So while Richmond radio has never impressed me much, one station has. Beach 104 (WCXL) in the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Now if you know me at all, you know I love everything about the Outer Banks. This station is no exception. I know it sounds ridiculous, but this station is the whole reason I have had a long-secret desire to work in radio. I guess I started associating it with good memories of the beach from a very early age (we’re talking mid-’90s here), and ever since then I’ve loved everything about them.

There’s nothing I look forward to more when headed to the Outer Banks (other than being on vacation itself) than being able to tune into this station. Not only do they have the best mix of music anywhere (especially the ’90s stuff- you all know how much I love mid-’90s pop and alternative rock), but they have a certain draw I can’t explain. I’ve felt for years that I should live down there and work at this station. Something about that just feels right. Once again, I know this sounds strange, but it’s true. I can’t put my finger on what that feeling is, but it’s a notion that working there is exactly what I should be doing in my life. I know there’s not much money to be had in radio, but I’d love to do it for a few years, or as a side job. I’d love to DJ or do voiceover work. In fact, even if I never make it into the radio field, I’d love to somehow get into doing voice work, whether for commercials or just for smaller projects.

Well, I could go on, but after an hour of writing, at 4:30 AM, I have to get ready to leave for Radford in about a half an hour. I feel better now, having written all of this out. I have a lot to figure out, but I’m going to hand it over to God and pray that He will direct me towards the path I need to take in life.

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