Saturday, May 31, 2014


It's been a crazy year.  I dropped off the map with this blog, in part because I didn't have any new zero-waste adventures to share, but mostly because I got hit with some mental health issues at the end of last semester.

I may blog about that more at some point, but the summary is: grad school is really, really stressful and sometimes that messes you up. It is always stressful, but especially when you are trying to balance three research projects and an NSF proposal and unnecessarily early concerns about thesis project selection.  For me, that stress overwhelmed my ability to cope and keep working at the necessary rate, and so my brain and body started going into a shutdown mode around Thanksgiving.  I finally got help in January, and am in a much, much better place than I was 6 months ago, but this blog managed to drop off my priority list. 

I may widen my blog post topics in future, we'll see, but for now I'm feeling celebratory, so here are a few things that happened this semester that I'm happy about:
  • I FINALLY FINISHED MY PAPER FROM MY UNDERGRAD THESIS!!! (Reviewer comments don't exist yet, shhh) but submission will happen this week. AHHHHHH!!! 
  • But seriously that paper has been a shadow over my life for the last two years.  I started the project almost exactly four years ago (minus two weeks).  And it is finally almost gone.
  • I learned how to set boundaries.  In my personal life and my professional life, I am finally learning how to tell people NO and say how I want to do things.  I am learning how to tell people that they hurt me (that's in my personal life only, thank goodness).  This has been a lifelong lesson coming.
  • I'm grappling with my faith and my identity. I started claiming my faith under somewhat hostile circumstances, at school and in my head (and at church, though that was more subtle).  Twelve years later letting go of those things means redefining who I am and where I stand with God. 
  • I'm finally managing to actually send messages on this online dating website.  No one has replied, but getting myself to be proactive about dating is a major step for me.
 So woohoo! Here comes summer and adjustments and new and continuing dilemmas, but today is a good day.