I've survived the first week of graduate school. It has been incredible, busy, confusing, fun, challenging. . . . I know that I can excel in the program I'm in but I've been tempted this week to switch it to a doctoral program. I think I'll wait and see how this semester goes, then, maybe, a new change will be in order. I'm pursuing a master's degree in environmental science. This semester my coursework is in wetland ecology, mapping and GIS, entomology techniques and an orientation. I'm starting a laboratory rotation next week, hopefully the only one I'll have to do, and will hopefully have some additional funding for the spring semester. Until then I need to find another job. Any job.
I've developed a pretty good study schedule, and am balancing living by myself (with kitty) and studying pretty good so far. I've just got to keep up with my coursework.
I've become acutely aware of how important friends and family are, and how hard it is sometimes to simply maintain relationships. I don't have many friends, but I'm especially close with the few I do have. This being said, when these close friendships drift apart--due to distance, lack of communication or lack of effort--it can hit you like a ton of bricks. Some friendships can survive years with no communication, and then pick up again as if you never left. Most require more work than that.
It's odd, being alone with yourself. You become familiar with your own habits in a way that is impossible when living with other people. You have the opportunity to take a brutally honest look at the way you live. And you'll find some things that you love, some that you didn't realize you did, some things you weren't aware of and others that compel you to change. Living alone is like having a mirror perpetually reflecting truth towards you. The next step it to find the courage and the determination to change the things that you don't like.
Living alone is not easy. Not that anyone ever suggested it was, but if people were meant to live as solitary creatures civilization would not exist. What animal lives an entirely solitary life? Mammals don't ever, they may have solitary phases, the lone male elephant for example, but even they have been known to form alliances, herds of bull elephants banding together like some kind of fraternity. . . mother-child relationships abound in the animal kingdom, and even worms mate.
I fear becoming the cat lady.
Now that that is out, back to this being Number One. This is the story of me living alone for the first time (with the exception of Charlie (Charles Darwin), my cat) working hard and earning the life that I DREAM to someday have. Vicissitude. Change. in baby steps, yes, but change, anyhow.