You are anything but a failure. You have an education, you played DIV I soccer, and you have loving, supportive parents.

I got married for the first time at twenty-six because I thought somehow I was getting old — I laugh at that now. And I filed for divorce exactly one year later. After graduating from college with a degree that didn’t get me anywhere, I worked as a tour guide at Universal Studios — ha talk about feeling like a failure. Then while looking around for a more “prestigious” job, I worked in new accounts at a bank. After getting fired from that job, I went to court reporting school, something that had nothing to do with anything I thought I’d be doing.

Thirty-five years later, I am divorced after having a twenty-year marriage and raising two wonderful daughters. I am so grateful for all the events in my life that brought me to the point I am now because I couldn’t be happier.

You’re just at the beginning of an incredible ride. I hope you will enjoy yourself and live every day as if it’s your last. That is the secret that I didn’t discover until I turned sixty-three. You can embrace it now.

And incidentally, I have a twenty-seven year old who also received a full ride — tennis. Good luck to you, annalea!

Writer and copyeditor. “What doesn’t kill us gives us something new to write about” ~ J. Wright

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