Phinishing up

I’m wholeheartedly convinced that most people don’t understand the blood, sweat and tears that goes into getting a PhD. For some it’s an easy process and for others it’s long and exhaustive. I first started at the tender age of 22 and I am nearing the finish line 5 years later. It’s been a series of rejections one one after the other. I once went back and counted and for just one phase of my dissertation I submitted revisions 39 times. It was crazy. I even had to change my topic which set me back as well. But I feel motivated to push forward and to remember why I started. I’m ready to transition into something different and possibly more fulfilling.  I want to be free and I want something that allows me the flexibility to live wherever I want. Life goals.

Some thoughts

Today was an important day for the nation and involved numerous emotions. While I didn’t watch the inauguration, I did see many of the posts on social media. I’ve never  been super optimistic and while it’s a nice idea to give this new administration a chance, the reality is that I think we’re in for a huge awakening. The people (or rather the electoral college) have spoken. It’s a done deal. My goal for this year is “Do better” and despite all the chaos in this world (that I can’t control), I am committed to improving myself and trying to make a difference in some way. While I don’t like the “play it by ear” life, it sure beats the traditional 9-5 with no end in sight. The truth is that we all need to be on the same page and commit to being an advocate to vulnerable populations who may not have access to the same resources. Knowledge is everything and I think that we have a duty to speak on behalf of those who don’t have a seat at the table. While I wish it was an easy process, the truth is that it isn’t. We’ve just moved back decades as far as progress and it’ll take a lot to get to where we need to be. Let’s all do better people.

Dating story 3

I usually wait about a year or so before disclosing a bad date story, but I’m 100% sure this guy will never talk to me again so I’ll make an exception. Back in my days of online dating (I’m off all internet dating sites and apps indefinitely–or at least for the time being), there was an app I used that was geared toward professional millennials. I had some marginal success with it so when an anticipated relationship fell through, back to the app I went. I “met” someone relatively soon and we started chatting through the app then texting. I’ll be honest, he wasn’t super interesting. He had just finished a professional degree in the health field and had gotten a job with the government. However, he didn’t have a start date yet so he was just hanging out at home until it happened. He lived about 12 hours away on the East coast but mentioned that he would be in my area in a month. We tentatively agreed to meet up when he was in town. However, in the month or so leading up to him coming into town we didn’t talk at all. No phone calls, no texts, nothing. I forgot all about him until he texted saying that he was in the area. It wasn’t really the most convenient time because I was packing to go on a trip and trying to run some last minute errands. However, I thought it might be nice to add a face to a name. He wanted to meet up for coffee but didn’t have a car because he flew in (figures). So because I’m a nice person and because I had sorta given him my word I agreed to drive the 25 miles (one way) to meet him. I got to the hotel and saw him in person for the first time. He fit the description of the word “petite.” Nicely proportioned but I could see directly over his head and I wasn’t wearing heels. I don’t know a man who would be happy being characterized as petite, but it’s the truth. He wanted to get in my car and drive to a coffee place. I quickly vetoed that because he was only allotting me an hour of his time and it was way too much hassle. So we went to get a coffee in a little shop in the hotel lobby. I ordered my coffee first and then waited a few seconds to see if he would offer to pay. Negative. So I bought my drink and moved out the way to him to get his. Side note, in his defense he was unemployed and was probably counting pennies. But then again my drink was 3 bucks and he had invited me and I had driven 30 minutes. But whatever. Secondly, he took a long time to order. He requested 4 different samples before he finally made up his mind. The process took about ten minutes with him sipping and declaring it wasn’t what he wanted and asking for something different. The conversation we had afterwards was nothing short of boring. I tried to get him to talk a little about himself but it wasn’t really interesting (real talk). It was a conversation that required effort instead of flowing seamlessly. So as we approached the end of the allotted time I decided it was time for me to go. He proceeded to walk me to my car, give me the most awkward hug in life and then walk away. Right out of my life…. not surprised though. 

20 Lessons I’ve Learned Since Leaving the Church

This!!! Not everything, but mostly. I can relate to a lot.

 

 

I haven’t been to church in over a year now, and I’ve been pondering how I should address what I’ve discovered along the way. If you’ve been following my blog for a while, y…

Source: 20 Lessons I’ve Learned Since Leaving the Church

A grey reality

I probably should preface this post by saying that it could be a trigger for people.  However, it is something that has been on my mind since seeing the video and reading an article about a topic that has been under a lot of debate for years. You can read it here.  First off I do want to say that I’m not a huge fan of abortion. When I was younger I was strongly pro-life due to my extremely conservative background and (I admit) a certain naiveté. But as I’ve gotten older I’ve realized that the issue isn’t as black and white as many would like it to be. The story of this doctor in my hometown of Huntsville, Alabama struck a chord with me. The fact that every day she goes to work with protesters lining the entrance of her practice infuriates me. No one (especially in a medical position) should have to fight in order to do their job and provide a service to the patients that is requested. One thing that struck me is that the doctor herself was a single mother with two kids before she even graduated from high school. She overcame so much in order to get where she is today. The fact of the matter is that people spend so much time an energy protesting something that really doesn’t pertain to them. They are not offering to deliver the baby, clothe the baby, financially support the baby, or even contribute in a meaningful way to the life of the baby. The decision to terminate a pregnancy is not easy. I think that vast majority of women agonize over it before deciding. The reality of it is that that there are some people who are just not fit to be parents. They aren’t mentally, financially, or emotionally ready to bring a child into the world and raise it in a loving and stable environment. Adoption is an alternative but let’s face it, every child isn’t adopted and growing up in a slew of foster homes isn’t ideal. I was listening to the radio last week and a lady was telling the story of how she terminated her first pregnancy because she was going to donate a kidney to her boyfriend and she chose his life over the life of her baby as he was in acute kidney failure and wasn’t expected to live much longer without a transplant. My heart went out to her as she had to make a tough call and I don’t know what I would do if I were in a similar situation. My point is that I think that abortion is a necessary evil in the world we live in. Women deserve access to those services and providers that are licensed and able to perform the procedure safely without being harassed and demonized for their choices. I’ve worked with women who have had abortions and those that wish they had. It’s a choice that isn’t made easily. As I said before, I’m not a fan of it and I think it’s unfortunate but that’s the way it has to be.

Learning and Mentors

It’s often suggested that when you start a new endeavor or begin in a field you’re not familiar with that you find a mentor. The point of this is to learn from them as you learn the ropes. These types of people are especially valuable when faced with unfamiliar situations. It’s easy to be paralyzed by fear instead of moving forward. I remember there was a playground contraption when I was a kid called monkey bars. The whole point was to move across only using momentum and your arms. Truthfully I struggled a lot with going all the way across. I would move to a few bars and then would hit a mental or physical block that prevented me from going even further. However, If anyone held my ankles while I moved across the bars I could always finish. A mentor can be a guide as you navigate though a new experience and is usually a good resource. I was recently in a position where I had to seek out a mentor of sorts. While the task wasn’t something that typically requires a mentor of sorts, I wanted someone who could both give advice and coach as I was in unfamiliar territory. The person had to be patient but also have the necessary experience I needed in order to learn from them in the most effective manner. I’ve learned that many times a hands on approach can be the most efficient way to learn because of the experiential aspect and the fact that it’s not a lecture of sorts. It’s a real lived experience that has memorable value. In my case, the person I chose was multi-talented and had both the educational knowledge and the experimental knowledge combined with the trait of patience. This created an optimal learning environment and served as a confirmation that the choice I made was the right one. 

Staying Loyal 

I have come to have a new appreciation for the quality of loyalty. I’ve noticed that many people don’t possess that quality. There’s definitely a variety of reasons for this and I think that human selfishness is usually to blame. Nonetheless, I believe in loyalty. I think that all healthy relationships have loyalty present because it builds trust. I think about all the business relationships that continue to stay intact because of loyalty between the two parties. A lot of people claim loyalty but it quickly disintegrates when something better comes along. Not too long ago I had someone tell me that they were loyal. Experience has taught me that many people who claim to be a certain way are in fact the opposite. It’s a phenomenon that’s been around for centuries. Needless to say, I was surprised when this person’s allegiance was called into question not once but twice and they actually kept their word and were loyal. Ok, shocked was more like it. It was definitely refreshing and also a reminder that loyal people still exist. Just maybe in very small amounts. Sometimes it’s just nice to have someone on your side.