Well, I made it.
I walked out into the Convocation Center and hadn’t thought about graduation that much. I’d bought the gown, paid my student fees for graduating, but…it hadn’t really hit me. Finished a 200-page portfolio (it was something like that…I don’t know how many pages, really. It was a compilation of ALL my work as a grad student). I also finished the final investigation (a long 36-pager) for my last class and…they allowed me to march down the aisle.
Until I marched out, and saw the sea of graduation black and gold that are the hallmark colors of my alma mater, did I begin to get those all-too familiar butterflies. The music. The Chancellor – oooh, yes..so formal.
I started this degree in the fall of 2008. Took one class and said, “working full time and doing this? Forget it.” But then it nagged at me. I wanted to finish. So, in the spring and summer of 2009, I took three classes. And then I burned out all over again. I tell ya, people who work full time, AND do the school thing at night are superhuman people. When I went to part time work in 2013, I decided to finish this degree once and for all. I had four classes under my belt. Only eight to go.
In a year and a half, I finished the rest of those eight classes. I worked full time for a total of five of those classes. It was brutal. And why I was a dropout twice over.
But I arrived. I am here. And I’m thrilled. To be done. To have the “Master’s” behind my name.
To commemorate the occasion, I must acknowledge a few people. First, of course is the hubby. These last few months I was like a zombie. I got up, went to work, got home and did coursework, ate dinner, went to bed and repeated that. He took on everything.
That is love.
I swear. He cooked. He cleaned. He drove me to classes because I don’t see that well at night. He supported me when I was deliriously happy for finishing all my requirements, and supported me when I sat on the floor, despairing and wondering how I’d ever get through.
Everyone is someone because of other someones who stood by and supported them. That is my Juanito. He was and is my someone who supported me through it all.
Denise and Clark
And yes, there are many other wonderful people to thank. In my internet world, I must thank two people: Denise and Clark.
You see, over the last few years, I’ve really become a Wakefield Doctrine scholar. As a side note, and this is no joke, I’m wearing the sweatshirt Clark sent me when I decided to go back to school. I didn’t mean for it to work out that way, but funny how things do work, don’t they? In any case, I’ve enjoyed the many call-ins with fellow clarks and all the study and conversation about the insights into people’s worldviews and ways of dealing with life.
So, on Saturday, I got a card from Denise. Totally unexpected. That’s what made it so sweet! I’m so amazed/happy/awed that someone I haven’t met in real life would take the time to send me a card like that. If you haven’t been to her blog, you should really head over. She’s a special, insightful gal, that Denise. And so ding dang sweet!
And then there’s Clark. Who sent me a compass. It has to be one of the coolest, most symbolic gifts, ever.
You see, even though I have a Master’s, what remains to be seen is what I will actually do with it. Right now I’m teaching some and working in an office. I envision my life taking on a more creative turn…one that involves more travel, more photography and writing. Perhaps some teaching. But…writing has been whispering to me. Coaxing me back into the comforts of linguistic regalia and the tap, tap tap of the keyboard.
This compass shall give me direction.
With almonds. Hubby just celebrated another year around the sun and I put 47 kisses in a jar.
I don’t think he’s eaten any of them, but I sure have. I like that I keep taking away from that 47. Now he must be 33 or something.
The Gift of Time
I have two weeks to make a bang.
We went on winter break starting after school yesterday. Of course, there was still the staff party, the running around to get stuff for said party, and the general exhaustion that comes from a Thanksgiving in Colorado, defending my portfolio, graduating last Saturday, getting the flu, doing holiday program for the school, a campaign fundraiser, the final days of teaching before a big, exciting time of year and…I was so glad to get up at 9:00 this morning instead of 5:00.
But now I have time.
You know what I intend to do with it? Write of course! And sleep, and read, and figure out my next projects.
I’m going to try to “just be,” too. Be relaxed. Be thoughtful. Be present. Be loving. Be kind to myself.
For My Supportive Friends and Network
I have felt guilty that I haven’t been exactly “present” with my group of friends that have been my support network. I’ve been so busy and so exhausted, that I just want to send out heartfelt thank yous to Bill, Melanie, Ruchira, Lizzi, Sarah, Rich, Chris and so, so many other wonderful people that I’m forgetting to thank properly at the moment but, in time, I will catch back up with you all!
I’ll be honest. This is something that I struggle with. I am interested in so many things and have a heart to do photography and writing and teach languages. I love to write, to paint, and to knit.
I may have just spent a lot of time on studying the theories of teaching Spanish. I’m a little burnt out on that. What I will be doing is writing. A lot. Maybe some on this blog. Maybe some on HubPages, but, honestly, I need to get myself published.
Suffice it to say, I’m going to spend my mornings and evenings writing. And I look forward to every second of it.
Maybe that’s Ten Things…maybe not. But I am sure glad to have some time to be back!