So I decided it was time to go back to school a while ago. If you know me, you know what a nerd at heart I really am. When I made the decision to go back to school to pursue a doctoral degree, I was really excited. I mean, REALLY excited. I love research. I love learning. I love the library. Serious nerd alert. But I didn’t really understand what an undertaking it would be just to get into a program, much less finish it. This brings me to my first blog post in several months. I’ve been absent because I’ve been blank. I think I’ve been wallowing in self-despair, but now I think I’m over it. I think.
You see, I received my first rejection letter a while back from a school that shall remain un-named and I did not take it well at all. They rejected me! Me! (Note to self, they rejected my application. They did not reject me as a person. I’m good as a person. I’m good!) I contacted them to ask how I could make my application more competitive, stronger. They replied by sending me to a blog. A blog! A generic blog that contained generic answers to generic questions. At that point I realized, the universe was telling me this was not the school for me. I must move on.
So I did. I went back to square one grappling with several questions. If I want to pursue a Ph.D. in Communication, where? How? There’s not a program close by, so do I fork out the insane amount of cash it will take to complete it online? Do I fork out the gas and travel time it will take to commute long distance and stay overnight for a couple of days each week? Do I wait until my youngest has officially left the nest this fall and convince my hubby we need to move? But before I answer any of those questions, I guess I need to get into a program first, right? So what program? Back to square one. My head hurts.
I even questioned whether I should pursue a degree in a different field. After all, psychology is a close cousin of communication. Last year, I took a few psychology classes just for the hell of it. They were fascinating and I loved every minute of it, but you know what I found out? I don’t want to do clinical work. I don’t want to sit and listen to people bitch about their marital issues. Their self-esteem issues. Their OCD issues. Their anxiety issues. It doesn’t fit my brash personality. Could you imagine your psychologist telling you to get over yourself? That life sucks and you just need to get over it? To pull yourself up by the bootstraps and grow a pair? I probably wouldn’t keep very many patients. I can barely deal with my own mental issues, much less a bunch of other people’s issues. Scratch psychology.
What about English? I clearly love writing. I spend the vast majority of my life either in front of the computer writing, or in front of a book reading, or in front of a TV watching a drama. I love studying language. How it evolves. How we use it. What it tells us about ourselves and our culture. Hmmmm…I’ll keep this idea open for now.
So this is where I am. This is why I’ve been absent. I’ve decided to use this blog (in the meantime) as a way to record this personal journey and to keep myself motivated. And perhaps it will motivate you also. You see, not everything is perfect. We might get knocked down a time or two. No. We will get knocked down a time or two. I just did for sure. But let’s get back up, shall we? My path to a Ph.D. continues. Let's see where this path goes.
Jennifer Furlong has 25 years’ experience in the communication field and teaches communication and public speaking courses in the Savannah area. She earned a B.A. and M.A. in Communication from George Mason University in Fairfax, Va. She currently resides in Richmond Hill, Ga. with her family of canines, felines, and humans. Let's be social! Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, and Twitter. Just look for Professor SpeechLady. See you in cyberspace.
Get my new book available on Amazon!