4Jul '17

I am happier at times, but let’s be real, also a bit grumpier

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When I started back to school for my masters program I rubbed my hands together in greedy anticipation of all the material it would garner for blog entries.

My identity as a single mother, self-employed photographer and now grad student came with an overflowing basket of instagram material. There would be life hacks – from dinner making tips, to teen parenting solutions, the articles on effective prioritizing and efficiency moves would pour out of me. Of course, you wouldn’t be able to hold me back from journaling about facing my insecurities and how my mind was being blown by all the knowledge I was processing. I would reflect publicly on my fears and how school was changing my sense of self.

Reality check.

I started my Master’s of Communication at Royal Roads in April. Since then I have completed 6 assignments, over-integrated the words framework and drill-down into my vocabulary, I have cracked two self-created meta-jokes, attempted coding-humour and on a good day I can light up talking through my favorite communication theories.  I spent three weeks in residency where my google history and bookmarks would lead you to believe I had become a totally different person over the course of the 21 days. I spend most of my google time in google scholar now, instead of smittenkitchen.com and the minimalistbaker.com thus the only food hacks I have for you are: the tuna salad packs with rice crackers from Costco should be in your car at all times, and by purchasing a wide variety or rice cake flavours you can go surprisingly long without self-pity at eating peanut-butter and jelly on rice cakes… again.

My parenting hack though, well it’s good – your kids can do much more for themselves then you think, you are not as pivotal to their survival as you think.

As for efficiency tips – the free desktop app Self-control will keep you on task versus falling into a facebook vortex of  recipes you won’t have time to make.

As for my insecurities. Yes. They are still there – shining brightly. Actually, in the days since I have returned from residency they try to take me down almost everyday. I am working on giving less space. They don’t serve me.  I remind myself that really nothing has changed and that I have gotten to the other side of things I didn’t think I couldn’t do before. So I will do it again.  I am still just me – same old klutzy self, (apparently academia doesn’t have anything to offer in the personal spacial awareness department.) I put myself first more – because I have to. I am happier at times, but also a bit grumpier. I need more down time to absorb and sleep. Which means less time for friends. One of my biggest worries about school was  letting the people down by not having time. I can’t encourage everyone enough to find your people, love them hard but also to let them love you and support you. They gain by seeing  you shine and typically they know your potential better than you. Plus, they bring you homemade pesto, send you encouraging texts and even mow your lawn. All of which helps you forget your insecurities.

I also have my camera. It keeps me very present and helps with healthy perspective.

Thankful for this recent moment –