Since I was a kid, I have always loved working on engines. I fixed anything I could lay my hands on. When I turned 16, my dad bought me a bike which was a big deal to me then. Every day after school, I would be all over the bike fixing one thing or the other, or even making modifications. By the time I finished high school, I didn’t have to think too much before I picked the degree I wanted.
I’m just in the second year of my mechanical engineering degree, and I’m not sure I want to do this anymore.
During my first year, I had a pretty smooth sailing. I was excited about being picked for the course. So I was enthusiastic about everything. I attended classes, took down notes and finished course materials far before exam periods. And it showed, I had really good grades and I felt very happy with myself.
At the same time, my social life was also not bad for a first year college student. I had a very nice roommate who always made sure the room was lively. Plus I had also made a couple of other friends during the orientation exercise. They were pretty cool and got us into parties and other stuffs. At the end of my first session in college, I came home happy and I resumed excited for my second year.
So why would I want to give all of this up altogether?
Just two months into this semester, I suddenly lost the will to continue. It seemed all too similar to my first year and it seemed like I had to live through everything again. I had to go to classes, read, write exams and pass. Over and over again. It just didn’t make any sense to me.
Also the fact that the degree I’m taking looks as if it was going to be theoretical again this semester. I chose the course because I thought we were going to be doing lots of practical work on engines and stuff, but it seems as if I was wrong.
I don’t just think I want to spend another year sitting and taking notes when I could be doing something else. My results in the quizzes that we have done so far are so bad that I’m sure that I would fail if I am to take any exams.
Many students understand when I say college does not feel like fun. And I’m not talking about the parties, because we get to go to many of that, but there was a schedule for everything. That didn’t just sound like how I wanted to live my life.
Since I got that bike, I was able to just be free and do whatever I wanted to do. Working on the bike gave me freedom to turn it into whatever I wanted to. So college felt like a bubble holding me back from doing what I would like to do.
Although I have the freedom that came with leaving my parent’s house and the responsibility of making certain important choices, it didn’t seem like enough. I’m not surprised when I talk to my friends and they seem to be enjoying every day of it. They feel happy and want to be there. But I don’t, and I know why.
With every passing day, it feels as if I am trapped the more there.
I still believe that going to college is a good decision, but I don’t think I have the mindset to do it. Despite all, I’m still not sure that dropping out is the best move to take.
I know I love bikes and all but I don’t know what I could do with it. There are times when I think of becoming a mechanic but I’m scared that I might eventually lose interest in that as well.
I don’t compare myself with others, but I sometimes feel that dropping out might make people look at me as if I’m not serious with my life. But I know many of my friends who are simply going to college but they don’t know what they want to do afterwards.
I have a girlfriend in college too and she’s another reason I’m seriously considering it. I’ve mentioned it jokingly to her several times that I might drop out, and she’s assured me that it changes nothing. She’s the only person that I can really open up too, and I’m not sure I’m ready to just leave her behind and go to face an uncertain future.
What bothers me most is probably my family. My parents have been calling me an engineer since I started fixing my bike in high school. The day I resumed college, my dad took two days off of work to drive me. He has also been telling my younger one who is not doing well in school to look up to me for inspiration.
I’m not looking to disappoint anyone especially those who have put so much trust in me. I have overheard my parents call other people who drop out from college “lazy” and “unserious”. So I’m not sure I’m ready to break the news to them yet even if I am going to leave school.
I have also considered trying to finish my degree and then finding my way afterwards but I’m not sure that I’ll be able to bear it. Someone also advised me to take a gap year to try and figure it all out but I don’t think that would work for me.
I feel that I’m yet to learn anything new in the class. Most of they are being taught are things that I figured out on my own while trying to fix or modify my bike. Despite that, I’m still concerned about the future and what options I would have if I drop out.
What are your thoughts?