So I’m six weeks into my master’s program and although it’s kicking my ass, I’m really happy I made this decision. After having more than a few months off from school, it was a bit of a struggle jumping back in, especially since I switched majors. I went from studyng Criminal Justice to English and let me tell you, the difference has been humbling. For whatever reason, CJ wasn’t challenging me. It may have something to do with watching crime documenteries since I was young, back when Investigation Discovery was CourtTV. Or that my grandfather is a retired CJ professor, who pretty much did every job in the system at one point or another. I don’t know everything there is to know about the discipline but it was like my brain was kicking back and relaxing because it was so easy for me. But my heart, that moody thing, it wasn’t satisfied. Halfway through my BA, I grew bored and began questioning my goals. What was I hoping to acheive with this degree? Maybe become a paralegal? A social worker? Dispatcher? Counselor? I didn’t know. And the fact that I didn’t know what beginning to weigh heavily on me. None of those positions appealed to me as they should have. I mean, maybe in the future, with a different mind set, they’ll be possibilities but at the moment, my heart has been demanding more of me, as cheesy as that sounds.
Which is why I’m here, stressing over a ten-page English paper that’s due in twelve days. I’ve been through the rubric, looked for resources and I’ve mapped out a general outline but I haven’t started yet. And I can hear that clock ticking ever so rudely. Nervous about writing? Who me?
Yes, damn it, because everything I’ve learned in this class so far has completely dismantled my way of thinking, my way of writing. In short, my whole life has been a lie! Okay, it’s not that deep but it might as well be because this class has me questioning every bit of writing I’ve ever done, including my first self-published book. It’s like my eyes have been yanked open, my skull unscrewed and my hands put on twenty-four-hour watch. This class looks at everything under a microscope and it’s unnerving but at the same time, I’m finally getting challenged. I just never knew learning to be so damn hard, sheesh.
But if I had to be honest with myself, I know it’s only hard because now it’s personal. It is my dream to become a successful author, see my name on a dozen spines, overhear people say, “Look! That’s the amazing, brave woman who wrote that one series that became a movie and rocked so hard it entered the hall of fame of literature. God, I can’t stop reading her work! (cries tears of joy).” And I’m all like, “Ermagerd, thanks! I love you so much! Here’s a free copy of my newest book! Want to have coffee?! Let’s go have coffee!(cries tears of joy).” I’m rambling… But that’s what I want. To fullfill my dreams and I know I can acheieve those things without having to go to school but I feel I kind of need to. I’ve been exposed to works, I never would’ve come across otherwise, that have effected me profoundly. My instructor is pushing me to dig deeper, asking me questions I never knew to ask myself. I’m learning to analyze and think critally of my own work for the best results.
I finally feel like I’m growing. I’m digging up my voice, refining my style and learning a helluva lot about the industry in the process. I feel like I’ve made a good decision, which isn’t something I feel a lot. These challenges are something else, I tell you. But if it wasn’t tough then I guess it wouldn’t be worth it. I’d be questioning my existence if it were. I knew that this would be life changing I guess it’s just finally hitting me.
If you’ve been wanting to go back to school for something really important to you, I suggest you do it and do it soon. Don’t let the fear of a challenge hold you back. There’s that whole matter of paying for school I know, but if there’s a strong will, there will be a way, there has to be. I just feel that life is too short to worry about the roadblocks. We owe it to ourselves to at least try, right?