Monday, September 23, 2013

Toya- The College Years

Well it's the second week of post 9-5 office hours and on my way to figuring out/pursuing the dream and I must say that this is the happiest and most peaceful I have felt all year. I'm not saying everything is perfect. I am just saying that I finally feel like I am in a good and healthy state of mind.  I will not ever subscribe to the whole 30 or 40 is the new 20 but there is a part of me that feels like my 20's are starting over again.  What I mean is that I feel like a whole new world of learning has opened up to me lately.  Chalk it up to spending more time amongst college students studying in local coffee shops during the day but I feel like I'm in college sorta. Because I am not irresponsible and insecure as I was in my twenties, I feel like I will be more resourceful with all that I am learning in books and in life.

This morning I went to this class on faith, music and culture that I have been auditing and became slightly envious of the kids there. Almost all of them were born the year I went into my first year of college! Good grief.  I found myself a little envious of the fact that they are all going through this experience together; that they get to devote their time to their studies and not their jobs and other responsibilities that fall into place once you hit adulthood for real for real. It makes me wish that there was a college just for people in their thirties and forties but such is life. Interestingly enough, I am not learning a lot in class. The professor's way of teaching is pretty neat in a sense that there is no homework. We have a movie to watch and we discuss certain points but in an nutshell, he seems to want to lead us to have our own personal revelations about faith and culture versus having us rehashing data at the end of the semester. It's not what I thought it was going to be but I welcome the discussions and this new discipline of getting up and getting to class on time which is something I never quite managed when I went away to college at 17.

I don't know if I have ever gotten into my college experience here on BGLU so I will make this brief.  I was never really a good student. For some reason, I just never could quite focus and live in the now enough to really take school as seriously as I should. From about third grade on up, my report card consistently said "Toya is smart but she does not work to her full potential."  I did very well in English, go figure.  I don't know what it was about me and school. Looking back, maybe I was just a little rebellious. Maybe I was just looking at everything and going "What exactly is all of this for anyway?"  With that said, I should have never ever tried going away to school once I turned 17.  I was far too sheltered to go away to school even with it being just two hours away. I was more concerned about living right and not letting guys into my pants than I was trying to get good grades so I voluntarily came home within a year. After that I went to community college pretty much for the sake of getting internships in the music industry and that was pretty much how my life went until I moved here to Nashville.

But now there's a part of me that is really excited about learning. Like, I think I could actually go back to school provided I was taking a course load that I really cared about.  My friend, an amazing sista who is a Presbyterian minister, was recently encouraging me to go to Fuller Seminary for their Theology and Arts Masters program. That sounds delicious but this is the thing: I don't even have an undergraduate degree and I'd have to go to school for two years to get one.  Here are the reasons why I am like "Meh" about that whole idea:

I don't need more debt.

I'm almost 40 years old.

Do I really want to be around that many children for that amount of time? Seriously. I am one of the oldest people at my restaurant job and I always seem to feel like Shirley from Community.

I just don't know if I have it in me to go to school for that long.

We shall see, we shall see. In the meantime, now that I am in better state of peace, I find myself reading more and wasting less time on social media. I'm just not that concerned with what everyone else is doing nowadays. It's been a breath of fresh air.  I think my first week after leaving my job was a time for me to kind of gather myself together and get some rest. This week is when I will start to figure some things out and most likely have more and more revelations. All in all, this has been a good adventure and I can definitely say that this is the happiest I've been all year.

Now let's see how I feel when Friday Rodriguez rolls around and my paycheck reflects the paycut of life I just took.

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