One Long Week

*Existential crisis. Feel free to ‘mark as read.’*

This is the last week of my 2nd class in my graduate school program – and the last week of my first quarter as a graduate student. I will have a two-week vacation before quarter 2 starts. I feel like I should go somewhere for summer vacation, like back in the old days, except that I have this pesky JOB and a huge project (and three smaller ones) due before I leave for my mini-vacation to Milwaukee to run a marathon.

The marathon & related travel fall, incidentally, smack-dab in the middle of my next class – a four-week writing intensive that all published reviews agree is super-intense, better suited to a 7-week course, a lot of good information, and oh, yeah, did we mention intense?

I knew grad school was not going to be easy. I am not stupid. I did not, however, correctly gauge the sheer intensity of a long series of short courses – courses which are taken one at a time because otherwise the students’ heads would implode. Courses that are short, but still cram in the same amount of information you’d expect from a 3-credit course that actually lasts an entire quarter.

And did I mention that mid-way through my first class, they completely jettisoned the classroom part of my program, so now it’s 100% online. Which is not what I wanted. If that’s what I’d wanted, I would’ve gone with a different program that I was very interested in, and decided not to pursue, due to the 80% online-ness of it all.

So now I am kind of kicking myself. I mean, this is a good program, from a good university, but it isn’t exactly what I’d wanted. And the one reason I chose it over the other program was the classroom experience. But now I’m 1 quarter in, with resulting student loans & $$ output, and I find out that the only thing that made it superior to the rejected program has now left the building (ha!). (In all honesty, the other reason it was selected was because I felt a lot more certain of getting in to this program than the other.)

At this point, I could still drop out, with 1 quarter under my belt, cancel my registration for the upcoming quarter, and submit application materials to the other program in the next couple months & maybe start over in the other program (if I’m accepted) next fall.

I’m probably not going to do that. I’m probably going to continue on in this program, get my Master’s, and then after a couple months of no school, start looking at PhD programs that will take me a little closer to my eventual career goals. Or maybe not. I will finish this program February 10, 2012 – 14 days shy of my 35th birthday. I hope to, by that time, be completely debt free (minus school loans, duh, and probably the mortgage). The architect will be wildly successful by then, probably running his own firm & hanging out with famous architectophile Brad Pitt.

And I’ll be…..done with school.

Probably running.

Likely training for a triathlon.

And beyond that? Who knows.

Do any of you know, like really really know where you’ll be in 2.5 years? In 5? In 10?

Do you really know what you want to be when you grow up?

Conceivably, is there a job out there that I will LOVE? I mean, I like my current job okay, and I don’t dread coming to work, but are there people who really, really look forward to going to work? Even the architect, while I’m sure he really, really looks forward to going to work again as soon as possible (please, someone, hire him – he’s brilliant), once the job gets back into it, I bet he’ll reminisce about the days of yore when he would get up at 7:15 to make me coffee & then go back to bed for an hour or two before getting up to work on the yard, or play video games, or go for a long bike ride.

ACK!

*End crisis.*

In other news, yesterday I rode my bike to (9.6 miles) and from (10.75 miles) work with my fancy bike shoes, and I did not fall down even once! Go me! In other news, if you ever ding one of your stupid little bike bells at me again, chances are high that I will chase you down, run a stick into your spokes, rip that damn bell off your bike & shove it vewy wuffly up your ass. Consider yourself warned, bell-ringing cyclists!

Ahem.

Not that the bells bother me.