Master’s of Science in Nonprofit Administration, y’all.
Mother’s Day has also been Graduation Day for my past two graduations. My mom loves it, especially this time around because I didn’t really want to participate in my ceremony and only did so at her request. Afterwards though, I felt glad that I had- just like Boyfriend said I would.
It was a nice way to wrap up a degree that, honestly, barely feels real. I guess that’s one of the bigger downsides of going to school online, I know I worked hard, but a lot of the times it just felt like I was fucking around, spending hours on my laptop when I could have been working (like the kind for money, you know) or spending time with my family. I know I learned a lot, but because I was always reading online, it felt less academic.
Putting on the cap and gown and walking across the stage made things seem a little more real. Taking cute pictures with Boyfriend and my family made me feel special and accomplished. Getting cards full of praise and expectations made me feel empowered for my next step- though I’m not entirely sure what that may be.
LSP Promotion Exams
Since I’m not a student anymore, I can’t be a grad assistant anymore, obviously. BUT on my last day of work my supervisor told me she wanted to hire me through the school’s research institute to help proctor the Louisiana State Police promotion exams. I was so excited for the opportunity, and honestly the paycheck.
As a part of my work as a grad assistant, I co-wrote the questions for the exams so proctoring the tests was such a cool experience. Like, walking around the officers as they tested, seeing things I’d written was gratifying and validating. It was my first time seeing my work have tangible, meaningful, REAL WORLD consequences.
I loved it. Of course, I was terrified out of my mind before the actual tests because my “training” was reading the manual sent to my email five days prior, but after the first test I was pumped for the second and did it without a co-proctor. I was telling our lead how much I enjoyed it and she asked if I’d like to proctor the make-up exams in Baton Rouge in her place!
So I started typing this post in a hotel in the state capital the night before the make-up exams feeling like a complete bad ass because I feel so adult and accomplished. This is technically a “work trip.” I had to file an ~expense report~! Who am I?! Hahaha.
It all just feels extra nice and is gonna look extra nice on a resume! More importantly though, it has done so much for my confidence, at least professionally. I feel more capable than I did a few weeks ago, not a bad feeling at all.
All the states! All the growth!
I plan on writing posts about it someday when I’m a more consistent blogger, but last month Boyfriend took me to Florida to meet his family. We stayed two weeks and had an incredible time. The month before that was his bowling tournament in Houston. This month we went to Branson, Missouri with my family. We had so much fun on every trip and made countless memories- which is like the cheesiest thing to say, but that’s where I’m at. ♥️
To sound like a broken record, it just all feels SO NICE. I promised myself I’d travel more in 2018 and when Boyfriend and I met we bonded over a love of adventure and travel. Living those promises and connection makes me feel like I’m finally living the life I was picturing for myself when I moved home after college and was so miserable. It feels like I’m making progress, like I’m growing. I’m no longer filled with dread every morning, I don’t feel stagnant in my life anymore. The scariest thing is I didn’t know I felt so negative until things changed, how long would I have lasted if I hadn’t forced myself to leave my comfort zone?
I still panic a lot. I still have no idea where I’m going with that Master’s Degree. I still fight with my family. I still have moments where I worry I’m heading in the wrong direction. But it’s become easier to jump out of those spirals before they force me to rock bottom. I’ve become less pessimistic in the past nine months and everyone who knows me has noticed.
I’m happier than I ever remember being and all I can say is fuck yeah, man. I deserve this.