The second week of my internship is just the same as the first one, lots of excel sheets and research and no Don Draperesque triumph in sight, and though I know that it is the same for almost everybody else I can’t help but feel a sense of foreboding at all times. Every minute spent basking in the mediocrity of the daily laymen’s jobs flung at me as an intern makes me feel more and more like a catastrophe, even as I learn new things everyday not just through my own experiences but also by those of my classmates that are habitually updated onto our class group, I can not help but feel like I am lagging behind.
Life can often seem like a rat race, and on the verge of entering into our third and final year of college, we might as well be taking part in the Olympics. First there’s a race to get the best marks, then the best mentors and the best projects, everything is a calculated move to amp up your CV; a game of chess, where checkmate comes in the form of a good internship which will absolutely decide the rest of your life.
Even reading it now I know that is unquestionably not the case. This notion of two months deciding your entire life path is wholly senseless, and yet it is something that I cannot help, it is something that I just can’t let go of, the same way I will always half-believe in Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy, except unlike these delightful childhood fables, it doesn’t spark joy in me. Marie Kondo would tell me to be rid of all that doesn’t spark joy in me, but how do I get rid of something that cannot be clasped in my hands, of something that just continuously swirls around in my head, in an endless loop, like an annoying song I just can’t get out of my head? When I can’t get rid of that sweater that doesn’t fit me anymore, or when I can’t stop mentally singing a song entirely too embarrassing to be sung out loud, I find that the fact that everyone else is also mentally singing the same tune brings about a bizarre sense of consolation and of belonging.
So maybe a similar approach can also be taken to this particular situation, just knowing that I am not the only one who’s taking themselves too seriously and giving too much importance to something that won’t matter in a year once again seems to bring about a bizarre sense of comfort. It is true then, that humans are pack animals and as long as I know that others in my pack feel the same way, I still belong. Though I’d say that we really do need to find a healthier notion to hold onto as soon as we can.