I was up earlier than usual (515 am to be exact) today. I was giving my roommate a ride to the airport. The drive back, I had a “me-time” and thoughts just came pouring through my brain like a waterfall (still have waterfall hangover from last weekend’s camping trip). For some reason, the months just flew by faster than it used to. I felt like I haven’t made the most out of my summer. We are (again) at the cusp of another season and there is no stopping time. I saw a few trees with some of their leaves already changing. I love autumn, I’ve always loved it ever since I stepped foot in New England. But autumn always gives me this nostalgic, almost-on-the-verge-of-tears, bittersweet feeling and the whole time I was driving, I felt a lump in my throat and a welling of tears in my eyes. The tears never fell, but I was overwhelmed by the rush and the variety of emotions that surged through me. Thoughts of going home, of going back to a place where I know love is constant and unconditional – my family. My frustrations about myself and how I didn’t work too hard to get through graduate school quicker. My fears about the months ahead, especially with the thesis defense looming and the undeniable task of finding a job. My initial excitement, which has now been replaced by doubts and apprehensions on what I thought was a special something, a blooming prospect that has now stalled and may just go away, not because it was my choice but because I had to leave a little bit of myself for myself. It was (or maybe still is?) a prospect that has life-changing implications for me and I have, little by little, prepared myself for it. But now, I feel like it is going nowhere and I only have my original life plan to cling on to – which isn’t much of a help because it basically just says “grab any opportunity you can get.” Where’s the direction in that? Going back to the Philippines and establishing my career there is still an option and is a more precise path to take. But right now, I’m not ready to go back.
I am a mess. The brain is a mess. My heart is a mess. And I tell myself to take things one at a time and focus. I need focus. So, after a short drive through the Mass Pike from Boston to Worcester, I realized that the most important thing right now is my research project. This was a no-brainer decision and the answer has been in front of me all along, I just didn’t want to acknowledge it because I’m still too lazy to act on it. But as I said, time is moving faster than usual. And if I want to move on with my life, I have to start somewhere. Graduate school has brought me here, finishing it should bring me somewhere else. And all along I was hoping for a more dramatic, romantic realization. But this is real life, not fiction.
Maybe I should make myself a cup of coffee and start my day already.