What’s Your Fantasy? [Confessions of a Twenty-Something]

Now, before you guys get too excited, this post has nothing to do with Ludacris and his hit song. I’m sorry. But it does have to do with dreaming! I tend to be a daydreamer. I make up crazy scenarios in my head, coming up with fairytale love and life stories for myself, my friends, and even random people I see on the street.  I was a pretty dramatic child and though not an only child, I was the youngest kid by 5 years so I played alone a lot.  My imagination was always active and thorough.

As a kid, I was never afraid to dream and create the life I wanted for myself in my head. I lived on Mars. I had 25 ponies. I was a mermaid. I wanted to be an oceanographer when I was in 4th grade. I wanted to be a Broadway star for a couple years too. I had dreams of moving to Hawaii and becoming a professional surfer (I have never surfed in my life). I don’t know why, but I always felt the need to create a better life and, later, a better future for myself than the present world I was living in.

I always like to have some sort of plan in my mind (whether realistic or not) to help me get through the days that seem rather mundane — something to look forward to, something to work towards. Though as I’ve gotten older and a little less naïve, I’ve realized that though I wish I could reach for the stars and dream any dream, it isn’t always possible. This doesn’t mean that I don’t think people can be surfers or stars, you can if it’s in the cards for you, but those were just fantasies for me. I can’t help but beat myself up sometimes for creating  “fantasies” (because trust me, I still do this now when I’m looking up airfares to Ireland where I want to live for a few months/meet the man of my dreams a la PS. I Love You) when I should have been studying,  job hunting or setting up a 401K.

I’m graduating in about 15 days (but who’s counting?) and I literally have no idea where I’ll be or what I will be doing a few months from now. Will I be unemployed? Will I be filling out graduate school applications? Will I be packing up my childhood bedroom to head for the coast? I honestly have no idea, and while that idea is somewhat exciting, I cannot help but let the panic set in. Every time someone asks me what I am doing after I graduate and I reply with a giggle and an, “I don’t know!” I feel like more and more of a failure. I was supposed to have a plan, wasn’t I? For a while I had a plan to move to where my Manfriend was, but that was a bust. I also had dreams of moving to Chicago, only an hour away from my hometown, and living with old friends and making new ones at some great job at a really cool company. I also had dreams of taking time off, traveling, and doing nothing at all. Sometimes I don’t even know what I’ll eat for dinner or wear tomorrow, how the hell am I supposed to decide what I want to do after graduation?

I don’t want to become a jaded post-grad like some I’ve encountered. I want to be realistic and not set myself up for disappointment, but I also don’t want to settle and end up doing something that I don’t love to do. As a soon-to-be college graduate, I feel that I need a plan because of the surrounding pressure from my family, friends and professors who tell me that if I take a break, if I let a lull into my life, I could end up never getting back into the groove—the groove of being a determined and diligent “young adult.” Whatever that means anymore.  I just want to have some sort of idea of what is next for me (and I have some, trust me) and they’re realistic and attainable, but it’s still scary to not have anything definite. This uncertainty is frightening and a little unsettling, but it’s not going to stop me from being the daydreamer I have always been.

I believe in dreaming (day and night). I believe in projecting a future for yourself that makes you happy. I believe in doing everything in your power to attain the things you want for yourself — love, security, friendship, independence, or whatever you so please. I want everyone to know that it’s perfectly okay to dream and let your mind wander because that’s when you find out what you really want. When you let your thoughts take you places, you can get to somewhere you’d never thought you could.

Katie is finishing up her undergrad at North Central College in Naperville, Illinois. She enjoys wasting hours on Facebook and tweeting things no one cares about. When asked the question, “Do you do marathons?” She promptly responds, “Of course! Which show?” Follow her @KatieGarrity! Or read her personal blog where she talks incessantly about Ryan Gosling and hummus here!



    1. Molly - UNL says:

      Girl dream big! That's how stuff gets done! I love this. I also wanted to be a Broadway star forever. I can't sing, but whatev.

    2. That Girl says:

      This was an interesting article and it got me thinking about where I'll be after I graduate in May, but I can't help but play devil's advocate on this one. Sometimes I feel as though I'm one of the only college students who's actually planning/looking forward to REAL LIFE. I hate to say it, but if you're not sure where you're going to be a few months from now, isn't that kiiiind of a huge red flag? Maybe today's college students should put a little more time and effort into determining their life path while still finishing up their classes. I know I did, and now I have 2 job offers on the table who are just waiting for me to get my diploma.

      1. No_WAY says:

        While I do have myself lined up in my college's internship program, I think it really depends on the person. I also know very legit people with internships and they shadow cool place and important people, but they are so socially backwards with their pot additions and crazy frat life that they probably won't be able to function without that constant hangover. I have always be very different from my peers, and I like having fun but I don't make poor choices or do anything to ruin my opportunities. Adults like me more than my actual peers these days, and honestly, you CAN live and love it without the high, or drunken stupor. I feel sad that my generation focuses on this so much.

    3. Susie says:

      My mothers neighbour is working part time and averaging $9000 a month. I'm a single mum and just got my first paycheck for $6546! I still can't believe it. I tried it out cause I got really desperate and now I couldn't be happier. Heres what I do, Fly26.comCHECK IT OUT

    4. Rate My Exs says:

      Have an ex boyfriend…go to to rate yours today!

    5. Leila says:

      I love this!!! I've always been the girl who wanted to know where she's going and I had a plan. But I'm not sure that I'm really passionate about what I'm doing right now. I have to admit I went the easy way and chose my master's degree for all the wrong reasons even though I'm sure I can get a good job after graduating. And I feel like I'm settling. All I need to do is complete this year and then change my major. Thank you for all your posts Katie. They've been so helpful!!!

    • You Might Like