Journal: Six Weeks Into My Master’s

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?

19 thoughts on “Journal: Six Weeks Into My Master’s

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  1. Congratulations! Proud of you! I went back to school at age 36 to earn my B.A. in English Literature.
    I graduated at age 43 Cum Laude.
    Marymount Manhattan College kicked my a$$ but in a good way.
    The most challenging time. Prior to enrolling my Dad died then in the middle my Mom passed away.
    I took one semester off.
    Was not easy but I knew that my parents were smiling with pride from Heaven.
    And yes I remember those 25 page papers. But working full-time, taking care of my brother Stephen who has Autism and dealing with grief I had to be organized. I couldn’t fail my parents or myself.
    Now I’m retiring so no more career ladder. However soon I will do what I want to do.

  2. Congratulations on going to school, changing your major to…YIKES…English, and pursuing a masters! 100 years ago getting my masters in English gave me 2 of the best years of my life (no hyperbole!) Enjoy the challenging, thrilling ride. When I was feeling extra-stressed once, a friend sent me a quote, “Don’t let the bastards grind you down.” I think she was referring to all the dead white guys’ works I was cramming into my head to prepare for finals, but the advice rings true today. I recently heard the Latin version of the quote in an episode of “A Handmaid’s Tale” on Hulu. Yay for you!

    1. Haha thank you! and that’s funny I was thinking I should dig into that show to see what the fuss is about

      1. What is the difference in asking a women how does it feel to a man? And asking a man how does it feel to be a woman?

        Serious question not pulling you pony tail or pig tales? 🙂

      2. Experience! Being a man how would a man actually know what it feels like to be a woman? And vice versa not being a man how would a woman what it actually feels like to be a man?

        Is it fair to day that either man or woman is stupid because neither one can truefully answer the question?

      3. What women see as oppression from their perspective men see as protection from theirs.

        What women see as privilege from their perspective men see as disposibility from theirs.

        Which view is actually correct?

        Neither is entirely because both are half wrong and half right!

        The problem is that both men and women deliberately use their perceptions and experiences to both validate their own points of view; while at the same invalidating the opposing views of the opposite gender who disagree with them.

        What neither side does is actually listens to the other side and seek to design policies; that would eliminate the inequities both men and women face based on their gender.

        The result is that both men and women are left holding the bag, cheated and end up worse off then they were before.

        What we have ended up with:

        There is a big difference in a guy walking up to a women with a smile on his face and saying, “Hi! My name is…” as opposed to “Hey babe you have a cute…

        Yet depending on the woman in question both are and can be seen as sexual harassment…

        There is a world of difference in a man saying to his girlfriend, “Let’s make out!” She consents and they both end up in bed together.

        And a man forcing himself on his partner when she decides to ask him to stop and he continues against her will.

        Yet once again depending on the woman involved both can and are seen as rape when only one example actually is rape.

        Conversely If a man wants to stop yet remains silent and continues the attitude is, “Too bad so sad silence = consent should he claim to have been assaulted.

        Should the woman who consented to make out yet never said no and continued the attitude is, “Too bad so sad feller your guilty of rape!

        All based on two opposing perceptions and world views causing women to ask, “Where have all the good men gone?”

      4. Depends on what you mean by stupid. Do you mean foolish? Does it make me foolish to believe I can experience happenings from the perception of a man?

      5. No! What I’m saying is that it’s wrong for a woman to judge a man as inferior or less intelligent and herself superior to him because she knows the answer based on actually being a woman.

        While it is just as wrong for a man to judge a woman as inferior or less intelligent then he is because only he knows what’s its like from personal experience what it feels like to be a man.

        The only wayvof knowing is for a woman to tell a man what it’s like to be a women; and for a man to tell a woman what it’s like to be a man.

        Yet in order to benefit both men and women have to be willing to lay aside their own perceptions not informed by actual experience and listen to each other.

        🙂 Thank you listening! 🙂

      6. Now if I were to say that in a woman’s studies class filled with feminists whose perceptions IMHO are skewed odds are they’d chop off my head?

        This is why I said the challenge for me would be to keep the feminist professors from driving me crazy!

        Btw I’m white male 58 yrs old married 36 yrs same woman…


      7. Years ago i couldn’t see anything wrong with a male supervisor sleeping with a woman under his direct authority. That is until I asked myself what if the male plant manager pulled me aside and asked me to commit a sex act on him. Not that he would (he never did) but what if he did?

        That is when it clicked together in my mind and i realized that even if she consented because she actually wanted it to. Her male supervisor held all the cards he could reward or punish her however he choose to do so regardless of which choice she made. On the other hand she was hedged in economically becausec the threat of her being fired was always present even if he never threatened her.


  3. Now that you’ve dug up your voice; keep growing, keep learning, but keep being… yourself! When you’ve finally hit your stride, give thanks; that your heart never became a slave… to fear!

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