Wednesday, March 28, 2012

D is for Degrees.

Today, I got an email with some pretty happy news. I've been awarded my third (and by far coolest-sounding) degree: my Master of Science.

It was probably one of the proudest moments of my life. 2011, for me, was.. god, I don't even have the words. There were several days where I literally didn't think I would ever smile again. I cried out clumps of my eyelashes, twice. There were days when I genuinely considered dropping out of university because I knew, I knew I just couldn't do it. I lost more than I knew I had. I developed allergies to everything I ate. I lived off $40 a week.

Of course, there was also beauty, and joy, and happiness. There was love: old, and new. I kept up friendships. I created new friendships. I met a boy.

I also wrote a Masters thesis, went to classes, and treated the first four clients in of my career. The thesis was accepted, exams were passed, clients discharged.

I am proud.

I got my first degree in 2008: my Bachelor of Science. 'Proud' is the last word I'd use to describe that particular achievement. The three years leading to that were a mess of self-indulgence. I moved to Wellington to get into clinical, but I was selfish, and lazy, and entitled. I thought that, because I knew I was intelligent, it would just kind of radiate through my pores and into my grades. Example: for one essay, in first year, I not only simply started it the night before, but I fabricated every reference. I made up an American Indian tribe and their traditions around female puberty and I made up books that I'd read about it. I got an A. So I slept, and sexed, and drank. I moved in with a boy who I thought I might marry one day, then moved out again onto my friend's bedroom floor where I camped right through third-year exams (thanks always, Frank). I barely got a B+ average, and yet applied for Clinical, which requires an A- average. Because, you know, I was smart, so I was entitled.

Imagine my shock when I didn't get in.

My next degree came in 2009. Stunned into action by my clinical rejection, I enrolled in Honours (thank god for that barely-scraped B+ average). And, for the first time in my university career, possibly my entire education, I really and truly tried.

My Honours year is best summed up by the fact that I got a B for the 300-level Neuroscience paper, and, after begging entry to the paper despite the lacking prerequisite, an A+ for the 400-level paper.

The amount of caffeine in ingested should have killed me. The amount of alcohol I ingested should certainly have killed me: and almost did, once. The lack of sleep alone should have driven me slowly mad. But I got my first-class Honours degree. Then I got my clinical interview. Then I got my letter.

At the end of this year, all going to plan, I'll get my last degree: my postgraduate diploma in clinical psychology. I don't know yet what I'll see when I look back at that point: so far, this year has been many sorts of wonderful. It very much has the potential to be my favourite degree year of all.

Monday, March 26, 2012

C is for Circle of Life.

When I bought my car, one of the most exciting features was its ten CD stacker thing. 10 CDs! I could drive all the way to Wellington and not have to faff with the stereo. Oh, the excitement. I got home, made 10 CDs, and trotted out to load them into my boot.

It doesn't work.

At first, I found this significantly upsetting. When I found out the stereo didn't get FM radio, one could almost say I despaired, in an utterly first-world sort of way. I recovered, slightly, after stumbling across the  absurd joys of talkback radio. Then one weekend, I went op-shopping with the bestie, and I found tapes. But not just any tapes.

The first tape I found was Billy Joel, who I have written about previously. The second was a Beatles best-of, which fills me with lovely memories about my first little road trip with someone a bit wonderful. But the third? The third, spotted by bestie on a high shelf, is the most special of all.

It's The Lion King soundtrack.

You know, how some days, your mind is just in a slightly different place to where it usually lives? You hear and see things differently, experience the world a little to the left of where it was yesterday. I have watched The Lion King more times than I can count on my fingers (and possibly also my toes), and I have listened to that tape four or five times since it was purchased: singing along heartily every time, may I needlessly add. But today, for the first time, I heard something.

There's more to be seen than can ever be seen
More to do than can ever be done

When the truthfulness of this statement (finally, finally, after decades of exposure) hit me, I damn near had a panic attack. My heart literally skipped a beat and I felt instantly sick to my stomach. Because it's true. It's true. I won't get to do everything.

People laugh at me because I am already planning - and I mean planning planning - a trip to Europe in 2014. But that's the soonest that I'll have enough money to go, and I need to know that I am going. I need to know when I'll next be seeing, doing, being something new. And that was before I heard the song. Now I'm in quite a state.

There's so much I'm going to miss. I will not stand on every beach, hear every language, see every star or taste every food. Even if I go, now, just leave and never come back, I will miss things (mostly because I will run out of money a month in and end up stuck living in a backpackers in Perth, not looking at anyone in particular). Isn't that just terrifying?

There is no thoughtful resolution here. I am simply terrified. Terrified of what I will miss. What if the thing I would have loved most, I never do?

Sunday, March 11, 2012

B is for Bestie, Budgeting, Boys, and Billy Joel.

There's been a long time between A and B. I tried to think of a long word that starts with an 'A' and ends with a 'B' to illustrate this point, but a) I can't think of one and b) that would be deceptive anyway, because there haven't been letters in between, there has been silence. Spaces.

'B' is for belated.

The reasons for this are two-fold. First: this week has been a little bit special, and my mind has been elsewhere. Second: for the life of me, I could not think of a decent blog topic starting with 'B'.

The title lists the doubtful contenders I came up with at various points throughout the week. First: my bestie. I have one, and I love her. Lovely love love love. She is beautiful and clever and funny and kind and everything a human being should be. Soon she is leaving the country for a long time and I am so so sad but excited for her to have wonderful adventures. That is pretty much all I have to say about that. Second: budgeting. I'm doing it, and I'm doing it well. I've no idea what else I thought I might write about that. Third: boys. I like one, and it's nice. Fourth: Billy Joel. My car only has a tape player, and I have purchased myself a Billy Joel tape which I have become mildly obsessed with. Sometimes I drive the long way just to hear another song. Billy Joel was the first person I ever saw live, I was still in primary school, and he performed with Elton John and it will forever remain one of the most wonderful memories of my life. The way I felt when the music came up through my seat and took hold of my body, knowing that everyone else in that stadium's heart was beating in rhythm with mine, those two men on the stage, playing music with such love and reckless abandon.. I'd never imagined such a world existed, and it was an utter revelation to me.

In sum: 'B' is for bliss.

Friday, March 2, 2012

A is for Agron adoration.

Agron, Dianna.. because I just couldn't wait until 'D'. Plus, Glee is on tonight, so it's topical and shit.

By far the creepiest thing about me is my obsession with Dianna Agron.. and there are a lot of creepy things about me, so that's saying something. Seriously though, this girl. I have no idea what it is about her - she's beautiful, yes, but lots of people are - but I just adore her immeasurably. I even named my car after her. I know she approves because like two days later she wore the above dress which is THE SAME COLOUR AS MY CAR. We'll be married any minute.

One time, she dyed her hair pink. That was a good time.

I have just spent twenty minutes on Google Images just looking at pictures of her and I forgot to get any to show you because I was mesmerised by the beautiful. See? Totally creepy.

Look at that SMILE.

And those EYES.

OKAY I'm going because I'm starting to creep myself out and also because this blog has served its purpose of making me someone else's problem for a good half an hour.. in fact, if anything, doing my 'hobby' today has only provided further evidence that I really, really need a hobby.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Oh when the saints.

It has come to my attention that I need more hobbies.

Well, really, I need more friends, but a hobby just seems a lot more.. realistic.

For all of you thinking 'You already have a hobby! You are supposed to be writing me a letter and I have NOT YET RECEIVED ONE, and how about that BAKING, eh?', you have a point, but shut up we're not talking about that right now. I have all year to write letters, and only a short time to get a hobby before I drive certain people in my life up the wall and around the bend.

So blogging is going to be my hobby! I am going to become a blogger.

I have had a blog for a long time, but since Dressember finished I haven't really been a blogger. I've been a girl who sometimes writes a little story on the internet.. and it really isn't the same thing, is it?

I don't really know what kind of blogger to be. I can't be a food blogger because usually I just have popcorn and half a cucumber for dinner, and I can't blog about The Issues because there are already plenty of far smarter people doing that, and I can't blog about fashion because I have no sense of it whatsoever. I can't blog about my job because it's kind of a secret and I can't blog about my FANTASTICALLY EXCITING LIFE because that's also kind of a secret but also mostly because I do not have one.

Ooh, I've had an idea! The other night I watched a movie called 'The Alphabet Killer'. Saying I watched it is a bit of a stretch, because I watched about fifteen minutes of it, then played Angry Birds on my phone for half an hour just to keep the bestie company while she watched it, then just plain gave up and went to bed. BUT the point is, there was a movie called The Alphabet Killer, and I saw a bit of it, and even though it wasn't even really about a killer who killed people in alphabetical order, I am going to pretend like it was and use it as my blogger goddess inspiration. Every day I will blog about a topic starting with each letter of the alphabet. One letter on each day, not 26 blogs a day, because that would drive certain people up the wall and around the bend in an entirely different way ('WHAT THE FUCK HAVE YOU DONE TO MY GOOGLE READER, AMY?!').

This post has already been plenty long enough so I will start this tomorrow. If anyone can think of a good 'A' word (aside from Amy, which is clearly the best 'A' word), please feel free to make a suggestion. Or actually any other letters of the alphabet would be fine because I'll probably be just as stuck for all of them. You can keep your 'g' suggestions though, because my 'g' post will obviously be about giraffes.