Category Archives: Life

Personal Evolution

Lately I have been doing a lot of writing. Just in my own journal because I love the feeling of pen on paper. I like the tactile quality of doing things the “old fashioned” way. I have a love/hate relationship with the screen too. As someone who has spent so much time hanging out in academia I have spent too much time in front of the screen! So getting away from it is a blessing. And carrying around a journal instead of a laptop is, by far, much easier.

A very wonderful friend of mine has recently started a PhD program at FSU in Tallahassee Florida and while she has been separated from me I still feel like she is close by. We were talking yesterday because the job she wants is open in the location she wants. The only problem is that she needs the PhD to be able to get the job. I flirt with the idea of going back to school for that doctorate. I want it some days, and other days I struggle with the idea of putting my student hat back on. What happens when I finish and have spent so much time and effort doing this great thing, and there’s nothing for me to do with it at the end, beyond what I already do? Don’t get me wrong the title alone would be epic for me, and I’d be the first doctor in my family, but I often struggle with the potential future that it would create. Yes, I would love to be able to study and do the things that I love in this world more effectively and write about them. Yes, I would love to be able to find a tenure track position and teach art history to the masses (because maybe one day it will be important again!). And I realize that I have to be far more dedicated to my studies than I already am in order to achieve any of this. There is lots of studying involved in even being accepted to a program. There’s lots of writing as well. Which I don’t mind, I just am so out of practice of all of these things that I feel I might be completely terrible at it. And I know that I probably will be at first, but eventually it will all come back. I’m not stupid, I am quite capable. I may in fact be the best damn researcher on the planet (I’m not really, but I’m damn good at it!). So what gives? What is holding me back? I honestly don’t know, other than fear.

So what is fear? Fear of failure? Fear of never being accepted to a school? Fear of not finding a university that would actually pay me to be there, because there’s no way I can afford to take out any kind of loan to do this degree. It will have to be a completely full ride. Basically, I have to get over these fears. If I try, and actually apply myself then I should find a program that will see my potential and let me in. If I try and actually find myself succeeding, then I will know this was the right path for me, yes? And maybe the universe will recognize the effort that I’m putting into it all. The personal evolution that I am going through to let go of these fears and just let things happen. I keep saying that I want my new place to be a different kind of energy and getting rid of the fear that lingers in my head about these tasks is something that has to be left behind. I’m throwing them out with the old furniture that I am not bringing with me! I’m letting it go with the old clothes that I donated. I’m throwing it all away with the trash I leave in the dumpster. Because I can do this. I know I can.

At first I didn’t think that I could be a successful yoga instructor, but I am slowly growing into one. I have had some great mentors! So if I can go from thinking that I’m not the best, to actually thinking that I am pretty good on the mat, then I can find my way to apply that to my education and growing my crazy number of degrees. Counting my High School Diploma I have 5. And one day, counting my high school diploma I want to have six.

I want that PhD. I don’t care what I have to do to get it. If I have to study all night, and work all day, then I will do what is required. It is something I haven’t been able to stop thinking about for a long time. And they say (whomever “they” are) if you can’t stop thinking about it then you should probably just go ahead and do it.

I know that I am on a path of growth. I am uncomfortable most of the time, and that is simply me adjusting to this new realm of possibility. I want to be something better than what I am. I want to be the best that I can be. I want to work every day to find my way to that better place. I want to study and to grow and learn.

The journal that I am writing in these days, the cover says “The best way to get something done is to begin” and the only way that I can get this done is to start. I have to. I know how to. I just have to actually do it. So I suppose I should stop milling around, grab a fresh cup of coffee and dive into something beneficial for me and my future. No matter what it is, no matter how little I think I am accomplishing, a little is better than none. And eventually that “little” will evolve into something much bigger. Even pennies add up to something!

Fear is no longer an option. I have to push forward. The universe is pushing me in that direction and I can no longer resist.

❤ Namaste

Onward and Upward

I have busted my ass as long as I can remember. I had a part time job starting at the age of 14 and always had a job since then, aside for the 6 weeks I didn’t in 2014. I have gotten an education along the way. Constantly pushing myself to prove, mostly to myself, that I’m not a moron. I was never an A+ student. I was an A/B student with the occasional C in math. I hate math. I’m an artsy type, so that isn’t abnormal.

In the 20 years I have been in the workforce I have worked in all kinds of places. I started out filing papers in a doctors office after school. I then moved on to retail in Jewelry, Kmart, then on to lots of restaurant jobs, back to retail, back to food, back to retail. Then in New York City I ended up working in education. I always said I wanted to teach. More specifically that I wanted to teach Art History. I had such great teachers in college that I wanted to be just like in my own way. I thought I could do it. So I set out on a path to do it. But turns out that path involves a PhD. So, I started with the Masters. I went to NYU and got that taken care of, amazingly. I never thought I would be smart enough to hang with the elite of NYU, but I graduated with a 3.6 GPA. So, you’d think I had the ability to tell myself I was pretty smart by that accomplishment, right? Nope. Still thought I was a moron.

I came home from New York and got a crap job. I stayed in that job and moved up for a few years. Then I went back to school for a degree in Library and Information science. I always saw so many openings for librarians when I searched for jobs. What the hell right? I busted my ass to get through library school in 18 months. I worked in a library for 2 years, one year in grad school and the other year just after. I like it. It was fun. Being surrounded by so much knowledge on a daily basis. I graduated with a 3.95 because I got an A- in a class. So, you’d think that would set me straight, and I would be confident in my knowledge. Nope. Still always second guessing my skills, what I knew how to do, etc.

I got laid off in 2014 from that library job. They didn’t want to hire me, as I was just a temp for a year. I suppose it isn’t good to be progressive around some folks. I accept that. At that point I was unemployed. I got 3 unemployment checks before I started working in retail again. Some crappy things happened with some friends of mine, we had a huge falling out in July 2014. And being really upset about not having a job, etc didn’t help.

One day I got an email from one of my undergraduate professors that I had kept up with. She said she would be taking a leave of absence for the semester of Fall 2014 and would I be interested in teaching her courses. She had 2, but could get me in line with a 3rd so the money would be worth it. Lucky for me a great friend of mine let me crash in her spare room for a few months. I moved. I took a chance. I cut a lot of ties with a lot of people, and took a chance on myself. I was SO scared of doing this teaching thing. University level teaching. It had been 4 years since I was in an art history class. I had no idea how to make a lesson plan or what kind of assignments to create. Hell, I didn’t even know what book to take my notes from. But I do know how to bust my ass, and I figured it all out. Yes, there were lots of bumps along the way. Yes I probably learned far more than my students did the first couple of semesters, but what I never stopped to take note of is the fact that I did it. I faked it the whole time and I made it. I’m a far better teacher now than I used to be. Going into my 4th academic year, reflecting on all of the hard work I have put into this career, I can say that I am much smarter than I ever gave myself credit.

My journey in getting Yoga certified has been a big contributor to that confidence. I still get nervous getting up in front of a class of people the first day, I know this because I taught my first adult class last Thursday and I was terrified. But I know what I’m doing. I have to remember that. Yes, I’m still learning, and hope to be forever, but I know the basics well enough to tell the people about it and even guide them through a practice. Yes, I will screw up. Yes, I will say the wrong thing. In all of the classes I teach. Some days I will be more tired than others. Some days I will be stretched too thin and others I will be bored to tears. But no matter what is going on, I will know that I have the ability to do what I am doing. People that know me on a personal level, they see it more than I do, and they tell me. The old professor that gave me her classes in 2014 emailed me yesterday telling me that she is continuously impressed by me. She has been my colleague for 4 years now and I can say I am equally impressed with her. She has always been a role model and without her guidance I don’t think I could have made it through the past couple of years. Honestly, my whole department has been really supportive and provided lots of guidance and feedback.

Today is the first day of the semester, even though classes don’t start until Aug 16. Today I got the Dean’s welcome email. I usually don’t read all of the emails from him, but this one I did. Turns out they gave everyone a raise. Me included. Sticking with it, and busting your ass pays off sometimes.

In Yoga news I have 2 more weeks in the After School program on Tuesdays. I have a Thursday evening class for adults. And tomorrow I’m going to meet with a studio owner to get things set up for a position in her studio. I can do this. I have the skills. I have the knowledge. I have the time. Onward and upward I go. I have been busting my ass. I will continue to bust it. And things will continue to pay off. I have some goals to reach by the end of the year, and I’m well on my way to accomplish them.

Thank you to all those who support me, encourage me, and inspire me. Without you always telling me that I was actually good enough, I may never have figured it out for myself.

~Namaste~ ❤