Friday, January 28, 2011

Need and want

It's amazing what two glasses of wine can do.

Carina invited me over for dinner tonight. I haven't seen her in a month, so it was good to catch up. We watched American Idol and then the new series of Skins. On the tube on the way home, I was too wine-y to read my book, so decided to write down my thoughts. I've been thinking lately that I need a strategy, an action plan.

Pops and Michele were telling me to really think and write about what I want, my goals and stuff. They said to write out a mission statement. I said, "yeah yeah yeah," made a resolution to spend 15 minutes a day writing in my journal about goals and dreams and shit, and then spent the next two weeks saying to myself, "I should really get started on that one of these days..." On the way to work today, I started thinking about what I believe makes me stand apart from other candidates when I apply for a job. As I stepped down from the Central line at Holborn, my answer was "nothing." Of course I'm not getting any interviews. Other people are smarter and more driven than me. They deserve the jobs I'm applying for. I thought about Tim and the fact that when he goes to an interview, he fully believes that he deserves the job he is applying for, and that he is the best candidate they will see. When I go to an interview, I'm just hoping to fool them long enough that they hire me. I chided myself for thinking this way, and by the time I had stepped onto a Picadilly line train, I had started a list of attributes that should make me stand out as a candidate. It's not a very strong list, but it's a start.

So on the way home from Carina's, I was adding more to this list, and reading my book about building schools in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and I had an apostrophe.

I think I should go back to school and get a degree in medical anthropology.

I need to go back to school and get a degree in medical anthropology.

But more than that, I WANT to go back to school a get a degree in medical anthropology. Even with a couple glasses of wine, though, I knew this idea was far-fetched and unrealistic. I'm $60,000 in debt for my first master's degree, which has so far done absolutely nothing for me. I can't go back to school.

But I think I might need to. I want to be a medical anthropologist. That is what I want. I wanted it four years ago but lacked the confidence to say it, or even think it. Yesterday, I wouldn't have said those words. Why does it always take me so long to figure out how much I want something? Why does it take me three or four years to gain the confidence to commit? I've wasted so much time, it makes tears come to my eyes just thinking about it! Twenty-eight years, ten months, 1 day, and $60,000 (not including interest) to come to this conclusion.

Now what? Now I have to find a way to make it happen. It's not a choice. I have a destiny out there somewhere and I can feel it slipping further and further away with each passing day. It is imperative that I fulfill it, before I drive myself insane with longing and an overwhelming feeling of wasted potential.

What sets other people apart from me is their focus and determination. But not anymore.


  1. That sounds like a super interesting degree. I say go for it! Also, student loans are put on hold while you're still in school. So why not stay in school? :) Seriously, though, I think the debt is worth it if you think that's what you really want/need to do. It doesn't make sense to settle with something you don't want because you're afraid of more debt - follow your heart.

    (I totally had to google "medical anthropology." But it really does sound interesting.)

  2. "I think you mean an 'epiphany'."