Wednesday, May 5, 2010


Yesterday marked my very last day of school, so I was too upset/confused/anxious to blog. Then: five o'clock rolled around and my roommate and I met friends for happy hour; by seven, her and I came back to the house for one of the most special senior-focused events with all of our sisters; and once the clock had struck eleven, I had cried about nine gallons of tears. I feel so much better. Late last night, I went out and celebrated everything, all of it--the past four years, the people I've met along the way, the memories we've had. 
"Forever young, I want to be, forever young."
When I got back from my year abroad, I posted about souvenirs; the word holds so much more meaning in the French language and literally translates as memories. I love this idea so much. It's the realization that no matter what the future holds, we never lose the past--the friends we've made, the things we've done, the places we've seen. We carry our memories with us forever, they're never lost, and the most important ones are never forgotten.
"I hope you dance."
Phew! Now that that's settled, let's venture into the unknown with confidence. Here's a little background about my career aspirations: When I was little, I wanted to be a veterinarian. I was not one to play with dolls or barbies so I surrounded myself with stuffed animals instead, and ran a vet office out of the closet next to my room. Unfortunately, I threw myself into my work so quickly that I got burnt out before the age of seven. By that time, I had my heart set elsewhere; I was going to be a teacher. A bossy girl at heart, I led the after-school kids my mom watched in lessons in our basement. I had a great little kit with all of the elementary school teacher necessities like stickers and a pointer. It was fun for all... until they lost interest. Not one to have the virtue of patience down quite yet, I moved on quickly to art. 
I was somewhat gifted in my artistic abilities; I was an all-star in art class when most students were focusing elsewhere, but I knew I needed more practice. I went to art camp, participated in theater-after school programs, took photography and poetry classes, and by sixteen, was attending Saturday courses at F.I.T. to craft a portfolio. Somewhere around fourteen years of age, I had also become set on becoming an interior designer. I collected books, followed the industry, and soon signed up for an interior design class alongside my fine arts portfolio one at F.I.T. I hated it.
Back to the drawing board! I've told you before that I was very multifaceted in my involvement in high school, right? As such, I wasn't sure how to figure out my path with so many passions. Enter: magazines. I could write about interior design, art, education, or health. I would have the freedom to develop a voice and become an expert on any subject I researched. I came to Syracuse University for their magazine journalism program and majored in modern foreign languages as well. The two, although seemingly different, are quite similar: translating is a powerful thing, and a key to understanding. Just as I'd hoped to be able to communicate in other languages and cultures, I hoped to clearly convey new topics/ideas to others that would otherwise be foreign to them. 
My Communication Law professor said Monday that we are all artists; our field requires skill, talent, and craft; we take a group of facts and organize them, and so it is our art that writes a story our way. Incredible.

Well, now that I am actually somewhat of a grown-up, all those dreams of the future have a chance to become a reality. It's scary but exciting, and amazing to look back at all of the things to get to where I am now. What did you want to be when you grew up? Tomorrow afternoon I have my first real interview. It's for a job within social media and the online world, a recent development in the plan for my future. I don't want to get my hopes up, but my fingers are definitely crossed. Are you loving what you're doing now? No matter what, I will soon enough be working in the real world. I guess that's my queue to focus my brainstorming on some hobbies :).
"Ready or not, here I come..."

Words: D. Alvarez, Photos: Kate Ottomanelli



  1. these photos are so gorgeous - but your words are even moreso. i've long believed that souvenirs aren't tangible things. even though i've never been great at remembering to photograph my experiences, and sometimes i regret that, most of the time i'm just happy to have the memories.

    as far as the real world goes - well, you know i've taken the same explore everything route. i think exploring all our interests is the only way to truly discover our passions, and plus, it gives us a lot more experiences that make us much more interesting. trying something out is what led me to this job, so i know you've got the right attitude.

    good luck tomorrow!!!

  2. Love the captions you chose for your photos, particularly that last one. With graduation lurking around the corner for me as well, I can definitely relate!

  3. inspirational and nature-full great post. I'm not loving what I'm doing and I hope I will soon. Best wishes to you to find happiness; it'll come with patience. the hardest thing is to be content no matter whate

  4. leslie: Thank you dear. Memories are priceless :) and you are the perfect example of a "worth it" exploration. Thanks for the luck!

    BroccoliHut: Thanks, they're all from songs.

    whataboutsummer: Thank you. I hope that we both find happiness in our careers and life :) <- loaded statement, but I mean it!

  5. I'm job-hunting for a "real job" right now, too. HOPING that I can get something in the editing/writing field, as that's my passion.

    I love the notion that we're all artists. I think that's absolutely true. Everyone has their own gift and set of skills.

  6. Congratulations on being done - I have no doubt there are wonderful
    things ahead for you!!!

    As for my job - I love it but it's not what I think I want to do for the rest of my life!

  7. What a beautiful post. This resonated with me deeply. Moving on seems so strange...

    I love the photographs!

  8. "Let's venture into the unknown with confidence." <- I love that!! I am wanting to study abroad next year for our spring semester but am not 100% decided. It sounds like you had a great experience with it though :)

  9. Sagan: I have complete confidence in you, you are so passionate and talented!

    A Toronto girl out West: Thanks sweetheart, I hope so! Let's hope you love whatever you're doing for always :)

    Ilana: Oh, I'm so glad! It definitely is, writing it out has obviously been very therapeutic for me.

    Megan D: Let's just say... I HOPE YOU DO! I have never heard someone say they regretted studying abroad but quite a few that regret not having taken advantage of the opportunity when they had the chance to.

  10. What a whirlwind adventure of youth! The veterinarian's clinic is very impressive. Why didn't I think of that when I was kid!? But I'm never too old. Me and the kids can set up a stuffed animal ambulatory clinic...for when the dinosaur toys escape. :P

  11. Love this post lady! I wish you so much luck today for the interview!

    Let's see...early on...I wanted to be a doctor...but, I am afraid of blood and realized that by middle school. I also hate hospitals and am still unsure why I spent most of my elementary days thinking that would be the right profession for me. I always collected magazines ranging in all sorts of topics, and by high school was aware that writing seemed like a right choice for me. When I first went to college, I studied all sorts of writing from creative fiction to memoir writing. I also switched from journalism to writing, literature, and publishing to become well versed in all areas, as well as find the right one for me. I loved all magazine courses but also memoir writing. I just did not want to write hard news because what fun is that? I know it is important but knew that type of journalism was not for me.

    Now...after living and "working" in NY after college in all things related to fashion journalism to fashion pr, I am working on films. In the last few months I have realized that although I love writing, the media world is so hard right now and the film world is fun and more laid back. I am still a writer at heart and this is why I have started blogging again.

    Hope this story did not overwhelm you!

  12. Yum Yucky: Haha, enjoy. The patients get rowdy but it's very rewarding ;)

    afreshdille: Thanks! I hope it went well :) and I appreciate your dream job story. I love how we decided to both have professions in the medical field before we realized that we'd have to deal with blood and such! I'm glad you're enjoying yourself and I hope we're both able to make our mark in the media world soon.

  13. Danielle
    Love your blog and would want to congratulate you for your writing talent

  14. Dubai Hotels: Thank you so, so much for kind words!


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