June 17, 2008
another peek at grad school
Every once in a while I have a peek at what might have been and find that there are some really interesting graduate programs out there. Unfortunately none of these were ever on my radar back when I was graduating from college, and now that I have the perspective to appreciate them I don't have the money. Well I never had the money. It was only my stipend that allowed me to attend grad school in the first place, and we can all see how that turned out. I fairly hated the place. My favorite part of going to school was the walk from our apartment to my eight o'clock class. The rest of it...meh. One day I sent in a few e-mails and submitted an application to be withdrawn from the university. That was that. Some days I still wish it could have worked out. My parents would have been a lot happier with me, and it would have fulfilled a dream of mine. But I have to ask myself, "what really matters here?" If I expected that a piece of paper would earn my parent's approval I have only to remember my own college graduation to know that's not true. That one B I made the summer before my sophomore year sort of nixed that on my mom's side. Talk about growing up with perfectionist tendencies! For my own sake, education was so completely ingrained in my psychic that I would have worked myself into the hospital for a piece of paper signifying completion of a program I intensely disliked and whose philosophies and shibboleths grated my weary and bleeding soul. Hardly a satisfying accomplishment. I know these things, and yet it's still the death of a dream. It was a very cheap, second-rate dream, but it was all I could afford at the time. Sometimes I wonder whether that shabby, much abused dream of mine will ever come back to me -the part that really was mine I mean and not just the fears and urgings of my parents. It seems like it must still be there somewhere in my passion for writing, books, and the well-informed imagination. I just don't know anymore.