First Steps Toward the Rest of My Life

In a previous post I spoke about bravery and finding my voice. Talking about bravery is one thing, trying to be brave is quite another.

I graduated in 2016 with a BA in English from the University of Phoenix Online. I went to college a little later than most. I never believed I was capable or smart enough for college, so I always put the idea out of my head. By the time I finally enrolled, I already racked up a nice collection of scars and negative talk for myself and around my junior year I was diagnosed with PTSD.

Living with PTSD has been a challenge, and every day feels like a new learning curve. Though I try not to let it hold me back, there are still days when I find it hard to function or even make eye contact with someone. It makes it more difficult to ignore any negative or discouraging voices that try to speak into my life, including my own. There are days when I find it difficult to be patient with myself and days when it’s a challenge to even check my email due to anxiety. That same anxiety has played a major role in making me avoid pursuing Graduate school, a long time dream.

Not to mention, my one major passion is creative writing, and fighting through the self doubt and society’s expectation of what constitutes a “real job” has been daunting. It’s not uncommon for someone to ask me what my plans are for the future, and if I say I’m pursuing a career in writing, the first reaction is typically “Oh, why don’t you do something a little more stable and just write on the side?”

Gee, I don’t know, Steve. Why do you go to a job you hate every day instead of giving something you like a try?

Let me just say this for anyone else going through similar struggles: Don’t let anyone tell you what you should study.

If you have passion, if something makes you happy–study that. Do that.

You’re the one paying for it, you’re the one stressing over homework, you’re the one giving all your time to better yourself, so it’s your decision and nobody can tell you what is right with something like that.

As it states in one of my previous posts, I am officially enrolled at Southern New Hampshire University to pursue a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing with a certificate in Online Teaching. My classes start July 16th, and while I am scared, I’m equally excited to start this next step in my journey to the future.

If you need permission, or validation, let me help you out:

It is okay to study whatever you want. I think it’s a great idea. Go for it!

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