Getting over humps
Tuesday, January 28, 2014
Wow, can’t believe it’s been a week since I last wrote. Thanks so much for all of your support. Thankfully I’m doing better for the most part.
In regards to not getting my squat form, I can at least do lunges for now and I am keeping working on squats…and trying not to get frustrated. I’d like to hire a coach, but I don’t have the funds for that so I’m just gonna do what I can. I’m mainly thinking it’s a core/back issue (perhaps related to my “injury” perhaps not). So I’m going to add in some more ab work to try to build up my core. Having a stronger core will be necessary for being a stronger runner anyway.
In regards to my career/school…I’ve done a lot of thinking on that. I really think I’m going to switch to the master’s program versus the PhD program—not because I think I’m taking the easy way out or that I don’t think I’m capable of PhD, but because I think the job opportunities available for those with master’s degrees would suit me better. As I thought about why I decided to go to PhD to begin with, I realized (with the help of a dear friend) that the reasons were more about other people than myself. I never really thought about it for myself. And also, I’m a chemist who doesn’t like to do research. I see myself as a lab manager, new employee trainer, or academic specialist—not a researcher.
But the big hump that I’ve been trying to get over is that I am not going to turn into my biological mother. I guess I’ve had that fear wired in me since I was eleven, when she first filed for divorce. Or maybe at age 14 when she decided to completely leave the area and not give any forwarding address. My mother was very capable. Very smart. Had a master’s in business in the 1980s. Yet she chose not to do anything with it. And then chose to eventually completely desert her family. When people ask, I just usually explain by saying she went crazy and I choose not to have a relationship with her. And although I knew I had this fear inside of me that I would turn into her, I didn’t realize how strong it was until last Wednesday.
As I spoke briefly with my boss about getting a masters vs. a PhD Wednesday morning, my response in regards to getting a master’s was this: “I don’t want to have to get married, buy a house, and have kids.” He just kind of looked at me and said, “You don’t have to do any of those things.” And deep down inside I knew he was right, but I couldn’t figure out what I was associating receiving a masters degree and not PhD with losing my independence as a strong female.
Later I remembered a conversation I had with a peer back in September. At that point, I had just broken up with the guy I had been dating for six months. I was struggling to find myself in the program. I was crying during this conversation and I said to my friend, “I don’t just want to get married and have a guy take care of me. If I wanted that, I shouldn’t have broken up with my boyfriend!”
And this past weekend, on the phone with my dad, I finally put things together. We’ve a long way to come until it gets worked out. I guess when something traumatic happens like that when you’re a child, it’s hard to move past and not have lasting effects from. For some reason, I subconsciously saw that if I didn’t get the PhD I would be becoming my mother. My dad told me that was irrational. I know that. I knew that. I know plenty of strong, successful women who haven’t pursued the amount of education I have. But that’s what makes it irrational. I can’t stop myself from feeling this way. I said to my dad, “I probably should have told you about my fears of turning into her ten years ago.” Funny thing is, my dad already knew. After talking for a while, I’m feeling better. I know that I’m going to have to work a long time to shake, if ever, my fears of turning into my mother.
My father left me with this: “I trust that you’ll make the right decision.”