This post jumps all over the place, but then again so do I. So maybe it works out, somehow.
Today I looked back a bit over this blog, which I started in April 2012. 100 posts later, I am marveling at the life journey I’ve had since I started Shorts and Snippets, particularly over this past year and a half.
A year and a half ago I was suffering from post-graduation anxiety depression. I wrote about how turned around I was after graduation, how nothing seemed to make sense anymore and how I worried I wasn’t ever going to get a job.
I wrote about the helplessness, confusion, and frustration I was going through, how the real world was nothing like college and that I didn’t expect my sadness to go away any time soon.
I wrote about one of my life’s greatest disappointments (which, naturally, turned out to be a blessing in disguise). I tried to make sense of failing an exam I’d studied for for months and failed by one question. I tried to reevaluate the reasoning behind my degree and my interests. I tried to adjust my plan.
Then I started working at my current job, a nonprofit organization called Tierra Madre Horse Sanctuary at which I’d volunteered for over five years (and written a book about). Still somewhat lost and unsure of what it was I wanted to do, however, I started my M.Ed six months after I graduated college, and promptly quit after one semester. And when I quit that program, I realized that it was okay to have absolutely no clue where my life was going.
I stopped having a plan.
And that was maybe the best thing I ever did.
Somewhere along the journey to quitting a life plan, it occurred to me that I no longer had to search for my calling. I didn’t need to keep looking for what it was I loved to do. I didn’t need to find my field, I finally realized, because I was already in it.
I realized that I had fallen head over heels in love with my job. I learned what it took to be a rancher. To be the caretaker of 33 horses. To be the leader of a nonprofit organization.
And the more I worked, the more I realized I still didn’t know.
I was thrown/willingly jumped into the task of running a nonprofit, and while went by instinct, I also learned by doing (mostly by failing at tasks miserably then learning from my mistakes). I begrudgingly accepted the fact that there was a lot of practical information behind running a nonprofit that I couldn’t learn at a horse ranch.
So, for kicks, I looked at nonprofit management graduate programs. I only applied for one: Arizona State University’s Master of Nonprofit Leadership and Management program. For some reason, they let me in.
And tomorrow, my first semester begins. Hence my farewell to sanity.
I warned you this post jumped all over the place. I’m not sure of what else I want to say other than to offer an explanation as to why I’m probably going to drop off the face of the Earth for a while. I attempted full time school and full time work a year ago with my M.Ed., and it wasn’t easy. I’m not sure what this semester has in store for me, but I know that juggling school and a job and family and friends and oh, maybe sleep every now and then is going to be one wild ride.
Will I finish this program? Or drop out after a semester, like with my M.Ed.? I’ll be honest: I’m not planning on either. I’m not planning on anything.
I’m just going to take it one day at a time.
Because the more I jump and fall and skid and dance through life, the more I realize that nothing can ever be set in stone. Passions burn and die and burn again, interests come and go, hopes and dreams are forever evolving. And even though the music changes, to keep on moving you still have to dance.
Starting tomorrow, dance I shall.
The music will be fast-paced for quite some time. But I’m not worried. I’ll make up the dance as I go along.