I think I've had a breakthrough...
On Monday i attended my group therapy session on campus... yes I'm in group therapy... if you're a graduate student I highly recommend finding a group if you want to make it out remotely sane. Anyway... I decided to share the details of my previous blog and it lead to a breakthrough.
For as long as I can remember school has been my safe haven. I ALWAYS wanted to go to school... rain, shine, snow, sleet, mother in labor, sickness... I was going to school. My parents often gauged my level of illness by asking me if I still wanted to go to school... on the rare occasions when I said no off to the emergency room we went. School was my escape into another world... an escape from my reality at home. School was my first love and best friend... I was a shy kid w/ a lot of problems at home... I had a lot on my mind and pressure... but school never asked much of me. Sure I had to read books and write papers, and study for icky math exams; but it was totally worth it.
When I started my initial graduate studies in the Fall of 2006 I was running away from a lot of issues... I wanted to start over where no one knew me and I had no responsibilities to anyone or anything. Since then I have grown so much, and in growing I've learned to love other things. School is no longer the only place that I feel 100% safe... I now have a community of scholars that have become like family to me... I've fallen in love and am in a serious relationship...I'm no longer a hermit that sits at home w/ my books and laptop.
This growth has changed my relationship w/ school. Now that school is no longer my primary safe haven the love I felt for it in the past has started to dim. Don't get me wrong... I still love the smell of new books... and I still randomly blurt out some new research idea... but it's no longer the end all be all to my happiness...
As I worked out my thought process with the group members, I came to realize that because I have all these other wonderful things that I love in my life now I want to delve into them and I see school as a hindrance. While I'm "only" 26 I'm ready to get married and have a family... something that I NEVER considered for myself in the past. I want to travel and see the world. I want to be able to see my younger siblings more often and not have to rush them off the phone because I'm writing a paper. Sometimes I feel like school is cheating me out of a "life"... it's like school is this selfish lover that wants me all to himself and makes me feel horribly when I spend time with anyone else.
I'm sure this sounds crazy, but talking through that actually made me feel a lot better... it gave me a reason for why the emotional disconnect from my first love at this time.
My goal for the coming weeks is to figure out a balance... why can't a girl have it all?
(Please ignore any grammatical issues... I wrote this while flying in the air... yay for wifi)