Wednesday, May 25, 2011


Last week, I turned in a paper about...well, I know the vast majority of you don't care what it was about.  The point is, it was the last one of the semester.  The last 10 pages of original composition of the first half of my last foray into real school.  Did you get that?  Translation:  I'm halfway done!  Halfway to the advanced degree I'd always planned on, but never managed to squeeze in.  'Squeeze' being the operative word. 

The whole time we lived in Caracas I dreamed about coming home.  Back to the friends and family and sights and sounds that I love so much.  And, then, we did come home, and it was glorious.  Except.  Except suddenly there was homework and research papers and deadlines and hours and hours and hours of reading.  My dreams never included Georgetown.  And, really, they should have.  It took me a year to apply to grad school and the logistical hurdles were insane, considering the modern age we live in.  And even now, a year into this degree, I still pretend my obligations and commitments are only peripherally affected by my coursework.  But, its simply not true. 

This last semester I took 4 classes.  And, despite my protestations, it was rough.  Very.  I was tired.  A lot.  And spread very, very thin.  All those friends and family and sights and sounds?  I almost never called or wrote or saw or heard them.  It was like living in Venezuela again.  Well, not quite, but almost as lonely.  And, this time?  It was my fault.  Not the foreign services' fault or a crumbling government's fault.  It was because I was doing something out of sequence.  Never mind that it was important to me, never mind that it was a good pursuit, it was just bad timing. 

I've been thinking about that a lot this semester.  About timing and choices.  About how life is patterned in specific ways.  About how we make friends and grow together in our friendships even if our lives don't mirror each other.  There is something to be said for having lived for 35 years and not 24.  I remember being 24.  But, I am not 24 anymore, like my classmates.  They are wonderful people, and I am excited for all the possibilities that await them, but I am not interested in reliving the last decade.  One of my professors this semester told us that she viewed her job not just as to teach us the course material, but to help guide us to becoming the people we're going to be.  And, I thought: I am who I'm going to be when I grow up.  I am grown up.  And, I'm exhausted.   I don't regret going back to school, I just regret not preparing myself better for what it was really going to do to my life of leisure that I have grown so very accustomed to.

I have never been more excited about a summer break than I am about the one just embarked upon.  We are going to travel.  We will be very busy flitting from one coast to the other and across the Atlantic and back.  But, it is going to be 3 months of no school, so that is a business I can get behind.  I will call and see and write and hear again and embrace the freedom of no homework.  And, a year from now, when I am all the way done, I will rejoice.  I should have gone to grad school years ago and in my next life, I will.  In the meantime, I'm going to take a nap and then make a phone call...or 7!    


Cecily said...

You mention both coasts. When, specifically, are you coming to SoCal?

Consul-At-Arms said...

@Linsey: Keep up the good work, I know very much how you feel right now.

Cassidy said...

Congratulations! I think it's awesome that you're getting your Masters -- even if it impedes on my plans for quality time while you're in DC (but who am I to talk about being too busy?). Hope to see as much of you as possible when you're not flitting from coast to coast and across the ocean.

Lauren in GA said...

Congrats on being halfway there!

I am happy for you to have 3 months off. Hopefully you will feel refreshed when it is time to go back.

sienna said...

congrats! that is so awesome! enjoy your summer off.

Tammy said...

I completely relate to your comments and reflections on timing in life. Doing and MBA while working a corporate job and commuting 60 miles each way was nuts, and probably the most frenetic time of my life. Phew, glad its over and you will be, too. The positive thing is the commitment you are making to education, to continually learning and improving yourself no matter what the age. It is admirable, and most impressive considering you have 2 little boys!! Congrats on making it halfway and next Summer, you should go to Tuscany and relax with your hubby. See my recommendations for traveling in Tuscany on my blog: all relaxation!!

Anonymous said...

Although the majority of people in my grad program are quite a bit younger than I am, there have been a number of "non-traditional" students as well, so I haven't really felt too out of place. EXCEPT when people find out how old I really am and go on and on about how they can't believe I'm in my 30s. I don't look THAT OLD at all. Then they apologize for making it sound like I'm so old and on and on...those moments get a little awkward :) I can't wait to read about all these summer adventures -- sounds like you will make the time off count!

Sadie said...

This week’s State Department Blog Round Up is here, and you're on it!

Please let me know if you have any objections and would like to be removed. Thanks, and Happy Memorial Day!

the wrath of khandrea said...


i have about a week left in this semester, and i'm giddy at the relief that lies on my horizon. i LOVE immersing myself in all this information, and the reading and writing and group work... it's remarkable. and i love it. but i am exhausted, literally.

you and me, baby... the next life... grad school at 24. i'll save you a seat.

Lilianne said...

Congrats, Linsey!! And I just have to say - is Caleb a mini-Kenny or what?!??? Wow.

Robin said...

Hey there. Everything OK? long time - no blog.

I really want you to come to the BC retreat. Of all the people I want to meet - you are at the TOP of the list.



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