By Saya Fyock
Do what makes you happy.
If there is ever a moment where you feel unsatisfied with your life, ask yourself why you might be feeling this way. It’s easy to get caught up in the chaos that is college and forget about yourself. Anyone who likes to cozy up to some Netflix with a side of warm mac and cheese can understand that comfort isn’t always good for you.
For instance, think of a relationship. Whether it be with a significant other, a long-time friend or a hobby, there may come a moment when you feel as though you’ve put too much hard work and effort into it, to let go…but sometimes, you need to let go. There are many people who express their desire to end a relationship with someone or something but feel like they can’t. I hear many concerns along the lines of, “I feel like I’m quitting and I’m just not a quitter,” or, “If I end things now, that means I’ve wasted all this time for nothing!”
In the words of Dwight K. Schrute, I would like to say, “False.” You don’t have to feel stuck. Just because you’ve been doing a job or dating a person or been in a club for as long as you can remember, that does not bound you to that position. If you tried, and you’re still not happy, you still tried. Every experience teaches you new things. In my case, I am referring to Duck TV.
I have been involved with Duck TV since fall term of my freshman year. I have acted, I have hosted, I have (extremely briefly) PA’d, and I have done PR. I initially came into Duck TV feeling like a contestant on Naked and Afraid, except with much more clothing on. Although I was confused as to what Duck TV even did, I immediately learned that I was surrounded by some of the most passionate, driven, talented people. Being a part of Duck TV taught me about hard work ethic, flexibility, and—everyone’s favorite résumé attribute—being a team player. Duck TV became my mock “sorority” and gave me a sense of belonging. Like any cliché freshman, I felt like I didn’t have any real friends; Duck TV gave me lifelong companions. That being said, as time went on and the terms shot by, I felt an overwhelming sense of guilt.
As a freshman, I used to plan my schedule around the weekly Duck TV screening or shoot. I was always so excited to see everyone and be awed by their creative work. Now, it felt like I was beginning to resent it all. I had just turned 21, gotten employed for the first time in my life at a leasing office, gotten elected onto the executive board of The Women of Color Coalition, I was taking 18 credits (because I’m insane and didn’t know any better), and I was testing my emotional availability and trust issues by managing my first boyfriend ever…all of this on top of doing PR for Duck TV while hosting it.
I was burnt out.
I stopped caring about my grades and I chose sleep instead. I overall felt like an awful person. How could I be in Duck TV when I wasn’t invested in it anymore? I was dragging all these good people down. These were my friends. I didn’t know what I was doing.
After sticking it out for a couple more terms, I finally decided to move on. I forgot about building my résumé on LinkedIn and started to think about my own sanity. I needed to realize that leaving Duck TV would not equal me letting anyone down—I was already letting myself down by disregarding my mental health.
I will always have fond memories of the incredible, quirky place that is Duck TV, and all of the wonderful people in it. To anyone I have ever worked with or watched on the screen: Thank you for teaching me more than I had ever hoped, and please…stay weird.