One of the more difficult parts of my move to Boston has been transitioning back into the world of academia. Academia. Yikes. Come to think of it, I’m not sure I can say I’ve transitioned back into academia when I’m not sure I’ve ever truly been here before. Yes, yes, I went to college and took classes and, well, had fun and partied and made friends and figured out what I had to do to get by with good grades and a degree. I enjoyed some of my classes, most notably my ceramics class and advertising class and those classes with certain members of the male species. Forgive me.
Don’t worry, mom and dad, it really was worth every single penny.
But being in grad school is something else. First of all, I’m no longer 18. Gasp. Which means that I’ve had just enough time and life experience to develop actual opinions about what I want to learn and how I want to study and what I think makes a class interesting and productive. After all, I chose this program for very specific reasons. Reasons I remind myself of every single day.
Second of all, there is a significant lack of hand holding. Scratch that. There is no hand holding. Now, I realize I’m an adult, we’re adults, and should be able to figure everything out on our own. After all, we’re resourceful enough to have found and been accepted to a graduate program, right? And while I can appreciate this mindset and really do enjoy being challenged, I am finding that some help, direction, and a wee bit of teeny tiny hand holding would be beneficial. Academically speaking. Because there are no members of the male species in my classes.
Third of all, and lastly, for now, there are things called abstracts and policy briefs and literature reviews. “Lit review.” I know, I wondered, too. And when I asked my professor last night in class to give us some actual, tangible, doable, basic first steps to starting my lit review, she said she didn’t think any of her professors ever told her how to do it. She just figured it out.
So on days when I find myself longing to feel a little less overwhelmed and a little less lost I do what feels most comfortable and natural. I walk into my kitchen and get to cooking something. Something that’s comfy and cozy and that I just want to hold hands with. Like a fried egg sandwich. Covered in perfectly salty Manchego cheese and wilted baby greens and, well, mayo. Don’t judge.
Good on you, girl … a egg sandwich is one of the best sandwiches there and how it’s made .. doesn’t really matter.
I can totally relate to this article. I was in grad school last year… All I had time to do was study and figure things out (definitely no hand holding). In my free time, I cooked to relax and take a break from reading and/or writing!
It’s so nice to know I wasn’t the only one who felt this way.
Your blog is literally God sent. I left Boston for a semester abroad and your posts make me feel like I’m there again. Thank you.
I am so so happy to hear this! Where are you studying right now? You be sure to enjoy your time away and I will be sure to post some good Beantown pictures for you.
Here’s the thing I need to know: Was the mayo freshly made by you? You had me right up until then. 😉
I can’t believe you’re making me admit this publicly. No, it’s out of a jar I bought at a store. But in my defense I’m contributing to my own attempt to show people that good eating doesn’t have to consist of a million steps. 😉
Nice work – especially the egg sandwich! I see graduate school hasn’t changed at all since I was there! At least you have computers and the Internet for your lit review – I sat in dim library hallways, pulled dusty old volumes off of shelves and had to back track step by step through the old stuff, volume by volume. How old am I? 😦 You’ll be fine!
Hi Mary! Thanks for the encouragement! You’re right…at least I have my computer which I can use while sitting in my PJs on my couch drinking wine. That helps. 🙂
Love egg sandwiches but must admit never tried it with the greens (sound yummy and will do next time)
Enjoy Boston (I’ve never been, but am headed on an adventure to New Orleans..food glorious food there!!)
Hi Lynne. I had never put greens on a fried egg sandwich before either. I was skeptical but wanted some veggies in my system that day. I have to say I highly recommend! They didn’t intrude at all. Enjoy New Orleans!
Funny post 🙂 Good luck with your grad school!
I only dream of academia from behind my laptop while trying to figure out how to explain to a nine-year-old how angular momentum works. We may be worlds apart in our world philosophy, but I sit here completely relating. I chose this home-schooling road and now, without anyone holding my hand, I’m trying to figure out how to teach children who are (without their knowledge) better educated than I. Thank God for amazing books.
At least I know now that egg sandwiches will still be involved when I enter grad schol in the not-too-far future; however, I really hope you discover a hint of hand-holding involved somewhere and report back, because I (secretly) would like a little help here and there.
Good luck in grad school (and lovely egg sandwiches)!
There is some hope…you can find hand holding if you seek it out and beg for it! I’m quickly finding that grad school is what you make of it. Which requires being assertive and driven and ever so slightly hard headed. 🙂 Good luck!
love seeing you write about topics aside from the Children’s Fund… 🙂
The Children’s what??? 😉 xo Jen!