I’m sitting here in a semi-daze, stunned. I’m not used to receiving phenomenally good news. Actually, it’s usually the opposite. Life has been a little crazy lately. As I previously mentioned, I’ve had to file several appeals with my university, because I was initially told that almost 90 credit hours would be accepted as transfers-in. That would’ve meant that I could’ve graduated in May of 2016- a bit earlier than what would’ve been considered “standard”. (By about a year.) So I was pretty excited by that news a year ago, and that was part of the reason why I chose my school: IU East. It’s a top-notch school- one of the best in the state, in fact.
So again, when my adviser told me (only 4 months ago) that my previous advisers had made a mistake, and that they would now have to take away almost 30 of my credit hours, I lost it, understandably. I don’t have $11,000 for the remaining credit hours. Plus, it would’ve meant that I would have had to put off my graduation date by another year. Needless to say, all of this has taken away my academic shine and I began thinking that taking a year off was probably in store for me in the immediate future. In short, I was disenchanted altogether- to say the least.
My adviser told me that she had tried to plead with the graduation board on my behalf, but came back with the news that they “never make an exception”. I may as well not even try, and count my losses with my wins along the way in this academic journey. And, for a little while, I felt myself giving up. I just didn’t have it in me to put up a fight, really. At least, in the beginning. But as time drew on, I became angry. I couldn’t believe that a school could commit such an egregious oversight and tell me to clean up the mess, as it were. It just didn’t seem fair!
Really, I was supposed to contact my adviser and go through that channel. But when things get serious, I like to handle matters myself. So, I filed an appeal. I didn’t even tell my adviser. I just did it. I pleaded my case and provided documents to substantiate my claims. And then I waited.
That was several weeks ago. I had already decided to drop my Statistics course a few weeks ago, and then filed a refund appeal, because I felt my professor was entirely incompetent. I lost the appeal due to “insufficient evidence”, although I provided the committee with 9 accompanying documents. Perhaps that was a bit much. Live and learn!
That was an $800 loss, no biggie. So when I checked my school email today, I wasn’t expecting to find what I did. I heard back from the 2nd appeal committee and they relayed to me that they had decided to make an exception (!) and shaved 6 classes off of my advising worksheet/audit, meaning, instead of needing to take 11 more classes to graduate, right now, I only need 5. This is a huge victory!
From what I know, this has never happened in the history of this school. It’s unbelievable. That will save me roughly $6,000- $7,000 off my tuition. I have a total of $4,100 for my spring semester, so that means that I’ll need to pitch in a grand or so for my remaining class, and if I push for the summit and take 5 classes in the spring (January-May of 2016), I’ll be able to graduate with my B.S. in Psychology then, in May, and begin working on my Master’s in Forensic Psychology the following semester, in August of 2016.
This is the best news I’ve received in a long time. 🙂
And I have to say it: IU East, you just changed my entire life’s course. THANK YOU.
And Al, if you’re reading this, a million thank you’s for encouraging me to file that appeal. You have no idea how much I appreciate your support. And, I wish you much continued success in the future and have no doubt that you’ll continue having many more successful solo exhibits. 😉
Good golly what have I gone and gotten myself into?
It’s 2:24 a.m. and typical as ever, the house is alive and buzzing as if it were 3 p.m. Brian and Brianna (sorry Brian…) -Brianna and “Bob” are in their room doing God knows what- I hear occasional screams, back and forth- I have no idea what they’re going on about in there…
“Lotus Flower” (Radiohead) plays on my speakers and Brian…I mean, Bob is dancing around the kitchen-head poking in and out of the fridge. It’s possibly the coolest chill song ever. You really should give it a listen- it always puts me in a super good mood, no matter what:
I’m quite sure he’s higher than a kite- Mr. Yorke.
You know I love you, Tom. My kids think you’re the greatest thing since sliced bread.
(I do too.)
Bob puts his hand on his head, shakes his hips and tries to moonwalk.
“Dude, you did not just do that…” I say to him.
He smiles at me deviously, revealing more of his gnarley socks.
Tomorrow is a full day and I have no idea what I’m doing up at 2:30 a.m. I’m supposed to wake up at 7:00 a.m. and hit the prayer closet, then read a few chapters from the KJV. I have sadly slackened off lately.
Consider this. We take care of our bodies- we bathe, we try to eat good so we can live longer. But why do we want to live longer? Especially those that hate to live. I’m not one of them- I love life- and think there’s something to be gained from pain.
But we do what the television tells us to do. It says work out- we work out. It says “be pretty- feel sexy”- we are pretty and sexy. And so on.
But what do we do for our spirits? Our souls? I scratch my head and search for an answer. It’s been too long. I’m not uneducated in spiritual matters. I’ve just gotten lazy. So, I’ve decided that tomorrow I will wake up exceptionally early and pray. This clashes with my honey brandy tonight though, and I’m feeling particularly stressed out, so I’m having a few shots.
I just know this. Whenever I rise up early in the morning and pray, I feel directed. I feel stronger and my day has purpose. I need to get that back.
“Reckoner” rolls out of the speakers now…
“You are not to blame for bittersweet distractions…dedicated to all human beings…”
By now, I’m guessing that I like to take on far more than I can handle. I like the pressure and I like to be challenged. I added two more classes to my course load (Earth Science and Health Psychology), as if Public Speaking and Pre-Calculus weren’t enough. It will be an interesting semester for sure.
If all goes well, I’ll be able to intern this summer at a substance abuse clinic (or behavioral health facility) and possibly graduate before the fall semester, where I’ll return to work on my bachelor’s in Sociology. Perhaps I’ll minor in Criminal Justice, but I’m not sure yet.
I don’t want to fit into a little box and do what everybody else does, I know that. I want to specialize in particular areas and develop programs and such. We’ll see where the road leads. People don’t understand why I don’t want to use my talents (singing, composing music, etc.) in a bigger way, such as- on a stage. But I have no desire to ever “be famous” – it’s sickening what the world does to people, and what they allow to be done to them. Famous people have almost no rights! They’re not allowed to speak freely- lest they lose “fans”- they’re not allowed to do what they like when it’s all said and done. They sign a contract, and they’re bought and owned, no longer freely their own person. There’s nothing attractive about that to me- not for all the money in the world.
Besides, people want to worship other people, and there are some that love to be worshipped with lots of “followers”. Gag.
It all sickens me…
I like what Jesus said, “For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?”
That’s part of the reason I despise Facebook and Twitter so much. People feel the need to tell the world what they’re doing 24/7. (Get over yourself already!) I call it being “Facebook Famous”- and there are millions of wannabees.
The world seems full of marshmallow people these days, blowing powdered sugar up each others’…noses. Flattery…super-sweet cynicism with an extra batch of exclamation points. They leave their calling card “great shot!” (etc. etc.) and few really take the time to actually “comment” on things these days, or critique something with heart. What are they after? I will tell you. They want to be noticed. Simple as that. “I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine.” So they go around, commenting (in two or three words “drive-by comments”) or better yet (note the sarcasm) they’ll simply press the “like” button and hope that they’ll receive a reciprocal “like” and perhaps gain a new “follower”. It all just makes my stomach turn.
That’s not to say there’s anything wrong with following a blog. I do follow a couple myself. I just really can’t stand the whole “I have 1,565 Facebook friends and 500 people are “following me!!” <<<< Take a freaking leap off of a cliff already and swim in the sea of reality for a while. Shut your internet down for a month or two- get away from everybody in the world- and just sit among the trees- listen to the wind and do some soul searching. The superficiality of social networking has really gotten on my last nerve, along with the egos of all who devour it.
I think I’m done with my rant…
I can hardly believe school starts in the morning.
It’s 2:54 a.m. and J and I are sitting at the table drinking tea. We’re getting ready to play Annagram Magic (I love anagrams) online. I celebrated last night, after a dedicated week of (rabbit food) fruits and vegetables with intermittent fasting, with a dinner of:
homemade pasta (with thyme, parsley, and basil mixed into the dough) in lemon, butter, garlic sauce
mussels in white wine and garlic
pan seared shrimp with chile, honey, and garlic
mixed greens (mustard/collard) and julienne red, orange, and yellow peppers sauteed in E.V.O.O. (extra virgin olive oil) imported from Italy with a shot of balsamic vinegar
Finished off with ribeye steaks
I am a mean cook. 🙂
J & I made two plates and took them over to my mom and brother’s house. I love to feed my family. There’s almost nothing that makes me happier than cooking a delicious meal and passing out the plates. 🙂
Josh is here, holding a plate of the homemade pasta.
Brianna teases Josh and asks him when Rumspringa will be over. (That’s for Amish people.) He does look a bit Amish these days- I adore him. 🙂
The pasta was super easy to make (Ahem….Heidi and Brianna…).
Take two cups of flour and four eggs- and mix it. Mix in some herbs if you like. (Or garlic powder, paprika, rosemary, oregano, etc. )
Beat the heck out of it for 5 minutes.
Roll it out (you can even use a can good like I did).
Slice it into thin strips with a pizza roller.
Throw it in some boiling water for 8 minutes or so.
Voila. That’s it. Really simple. Top it off with any sauce you like.
I’m off to play Annagram Magic.
So my assignments are stacking up already.
Fill out proctor forms/fax back to instructors
Read 28 pages in Nutrition/take first quiz
Finish up reading in Alcohol and Other Drug Problems- type out 2 page report as a treatment center assistant, specializing in prevention
Prepare for my first speech
They’re not due until next Monday, so…there’s time.
I’m tempted to go play hookie. Down at the river. With my camera. Maybe- maybe I could do research of some kind. For school. Or something.
With my camera.
Josh is frustrated. He’s on his laptop rambling on about his inconsiderate teacher.
I really didn’t hear a word he said.
“Is that your Spanish class?” I asked.
“Yeah,” he said, seemingly appeased.
Heidi/Lensbaby Composer Pro/Double Glass Ops./RAW/Manual [Rebel xti]
I can’t believe school starts tomorrow. My summer vacation is officially over.
Heidi emailed me and asked if she might come to live with us until February. I’m ecstatic! We’ll be moving into a new house before September 10th. The $5,280 in school grants and loans will be a big help. Josh will be going full-time this semester as well. He’ll be receiving less than $4,000, but between the both of us, we’ll pay for five months of rent up front, which will take some of the pressure off. Because Heidi will be with us, we’ll probably go with a four bedroom house. When she’s back in Bloomington (here and there), we’ll use the room as an office.
I’m a bit weirded out by my Speech class. I’ve put that class off for two years. (Sigh.) I’ll also be going into my fourth semester of college math. I was going to break up my classes and only go part-time, but decided to bite the bullet and face all of my fears at once and simply get it over with. I’m saddened that I will have to put my photography on the back burner once again, but excited by the fact that I’ll be simultaneously working on my online gallery.
I was also just juried in to Sojie 18:
Birgitta, hi, your image below was nominated for SoJie 18 –
Solo’s Juried Invitational Exhibition on “Abstracts”
- deadline is Friday, August 24, 2012, 8AM New York time!
- judging starts immediately after the deadline
- show opens Monday, August 27th!
SoJie 18 – exhibition space and instructions
Use the special “Easy Button” linked in the intro to get image code to copy/paste into a comment.
There is the link, and an illustration in the intro on how to use the Easy Button, 1-2-3.
p.s. Below is your nominated image. You will see your nomination sticker in the comments. Click it, or the above link for instructions.
I took the shot with a Lensbaby Composer Pro (Double Glass)- slow shutter sp./ Night shot (about 8 seconds or so).
RAW/manual/Canon Rebel Xti
I love to bend the light. This image is almost SOOTC/straight out of the camera.
I did a slight level adjustment, but apart from that- it is.
It’s a prestigious nomination. I’m pleased. 🙂