Instead of doing a Week in Rewind this week, I wanted to shorter, less formal post in which I muse about life. I’ll call this new series Sunday Snapshot. It’s funny that this Sunday happens to be Valentine’s Day. I’ve never had a special person in my life during on Valentine’s Day, but it’s never been a day that I’ve dreaded or resented. It’s always just been a very peaceful and reflective day for me.
This Valentine’s Day happens to be the anniversary of the first time I read The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender by Leslye Walton. This book was a very quick read and it was one that has stuck with me since I first experienced it. It focuses on three generations of women who have had tragic romances with men but have continued to live on. I found this book really personally inspiring to live without fear of loss.
I think a common narrative most people strive for in their lives is to find a significant other so their lives can truly begin. But I’ve never felt comfortable in my young adult with the idea that my life and happiness could be dependent on someone else. I honestly think I’d just be happy if I could get to point in my life where I can support myself and be able to provide a good home for a dog of my very own. (Right now my dream is to adopt a rescued Greyhound. Don’t ask. Couldn’t tell ya.)
This Valentine’s Day will be my first spent in Texas since high school. For the past four years, I had lived in Iowa while I worked on my undergraduate degree at Iowa State University. It is a beautiful campus on which I felt very safe and miss it tremendously. After six months of living in Dallas, I know I’m done with Texas and want to live up north again. Perhaps not in Iowa, but somewhere where I can experience a fuller range of the seasons and not need to rely so much on driving a car.
I’m really happy with where I’ve ended up at this time in my life, all things considering. I feel like I did not know fully what I was getting into when I applied to the Emerging Media and Communication (EMAC) graduate program, but I’m so happy with what it’s turned out to be. I’ve learned so much in just the few months I’ve been in this program and have been made to think so much about the implications of living in today’s digital culture. I’m perpetually feeling inspired to inquire more into topics introduced in my classes and never quite feel like there’s enough time to do all the things I wish I could. It’s a really exciting time in my life right now.
Most significantly for me, in the past couple of weeks I have begun to think seriously about applying to a PhD program next year after I complete my MA. I’d never thought I’d want to do such a thing. I feel like it was never in the realm of possibility for me. Neither of my parents really went to college and I feel like their expectation was for me to get my BA and start working right away. It certainly would have been the safe thing to do. But boring as well. I’ve never quite felt like I was cut out for a regular life. And now I’ve become much more comfortable with not settling for anything less than what I think would really make me happy.
It will be interesting to see where my life takes me over the course of the next year. I’d like to think that by next Valentine’s Day I’ll know where I’ll be going next in my studies and professional life, but that might be hoping for too much. So much can change in a single year. All I know is that I have a lot of work to do right now, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.