I’ve begun a new adventure and stage of my journey this week with my first grad school classes. I didn’t realize just how much I’ve missed the academic atmosphere of class discussions and intense readings. I know I’m going to be busy out of my mind over the next few years, but the exhilaration of getting to play with ideas again is worth the extra stress.
I don’t regret taking a break from school after I initially graduated. It was the best decision I could have made at the time, allowing me to get some real-life experience, figure out what I really wanted to be “when I grew up,” and break away from the high-pressure of performance.
I’d recommend it to any student fresh out of college: unless you have a boundless supply of energy and know exactly where you want to go in life, take some time to celebrate your accomplishments and rest. Consider your options over the course of a year or two. Get some experience in the field of your interest, or try out lots of different fields! School will still be there when you’re ready.
I was slightly afraid at first that I’d forgotten how to be a student after several years of being out, but I think the break may have made me a better student. I’ve gotten enough perspective to realize that grades aren’t really the most important part of education, something I struggled with a lot in undergrad. It probably helps that I’m going to a school that doesn’t use traditional grading, but I feel that I would be less concerned about perfect 100’s even if I were going to a traditional educational institution.
I also feel like I’ve had the opportunity to really get to know who I am and what I believe. Everyone talks about school being the place where you find yourself. It is a great place to get ideas and try out new ways of being, but I feel that it was the space in between undergrad and grad school that really allowed me to find myself. It was then that I was able to digest the information and find out how what I had learned previously applied to my life…and where I still needed to learn and grow.
I feel as though I’ve been glowing this whole week. I’m ready for the challenge of stretching my thinking and worldview. I’m ready for the transformation that will inevitably follow.
For the time being, I’m planning on keeping up with posting something new on the weekends, as usual. In this moment, at least, I feel that my sense of balance and the value of the different parts of my life will prevent school from becoming all-consuming. I even have hopes that grad school will be a kick-start to my blog as well as my life. Get ready for some out-loud musings and some light-hearted frustrations. I encourage my readers to enjoy my journey with me and welcome questions, ideas, and discussion on the various topics that I will metaphorically chewing on in the coming months.