Voiceless Rant: The Series

A Voiceless Rant: May 2018 Edition.

Hey, guys – welcome back to TNTH!

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So, no one was going to tell me that I haven’t posted a voiceless rant post for the month of May and now we are literally two days away from June? Crazy.

This month flew by, but then it didn’t. It could be because I wrapped up my final semester and the first half of the month was literally me writing and writing and writing every single day before the last day of classes. In the gist of final papers and submitting my thesis (which passed!), I got the opportunity to speak about my thesis at my college’s graduate conference. It was such a surreal feeling to stand in front of an audience (including my very supportive thesis advisor) and showcase what I’ve been working on for the last two years; it was seriously a great way to end my graduate career.

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Abstract of my Grad Conference Presentation.

Speaking of finishing up grad school, I graduate in two days. I am still trying to let that sink in. It didn’t feel real for awhile; I kept telling myself that something was going to hold me back from getting this Masters degree and that this wasn’t going to be the end of my journey. But everything is stamped and ready to go. I’m graduating with my Masters degree in English. 

Two years felt like an eternity when I was just starting out. 2018 felt too far away for it to be only two years, but these last two years flew by. I just was graduating with my bachelors. I was just taking Professor Carlo’s class in my first semester as a grad student. I just wrote that last final paper for her that I knew was going to be my thesis. I just met all of the people in my grad courses who were cool as hell. I just started grad school.

 

And I think that’s what tripping me up: I struggled and worked my ass off for two years, and finally it is all over. I can’t lie, I lost a lot of people to get where I am now, including my uncle who constantly told me how proud he was for me being the first in the family to get two degrees. I even lost a lot of myself in the process, and it’s not easy trying to get parts of yourself back after feeling like you’ve been away for so long. I don’t necessarily remember who I was before grad school, but I’m damn sure that I’ll be finding who I am now as an actual human being than just one who is a student. I finally am going to be able to take care of myself in ways I wasn’t able to do because of grad school, and that’s honestly what’s so bittersweet about this moment. I was able to get through such a hard time and place in my life, and I can finally breathe again.

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Middle School Tassel & Grad School Tassel.

I guess the overall meaning of this post is that don’t let anyone, not even yourself, tell you that you can’t do it. For months, it felt like I was never going to see the end of this journey because I was self-sabotaging; I really thought I wasn’t going to make it. There were times I told myself I was dropping out because my mental health meant so much more than a piece of paper you get framed on your wall. But I didn’t. My drive, my passion, and my responsibilities made me get where I am now, and I’m glad I got here to experience what it feels like seeing all of your hard work pay off. Staring at my Masters gown, decorating my cap, trying on my graduation outfit… nothing else beats the feeling.

Ten years ago, I couldn’t imagine myself being where I’m at. As a 14-year-old teen, my next chapter was me going to high-school and pursuing my singing with other talented teens like me. As a 24-year-old young woman, my next chapter is me getting a better understanding of who I am, and hopefully getting hired at a job that reflects on the hard work I did to get here.

Here’s to graduation, here’s to a new chapter of life, and here’s to everyone who may have self-doubts about doing whatever they want to do.

Come on and do it. (Yes, that is a Spice Girls reference.)

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-Liz. (:

Topic Tuesdays: Random

Pros of Journaling.

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For the entirety of 2016, I decided that I was going to journal write every single day until the end of the year. For the most part, I kept up worth it and the 300+ page journal I kept is now completely full of memories, moments, and simply just thoughts I had at the time. By the time the year was ended, I realize just how much journaling the entire year helped me shape into the person that I always wanted to be.

People dismiss journaling because people classify it being something that “emotional” people do to cope with their emotions. Where, yes, it’s a place where you most likely write your emotions down whenever you’re feeling them, but journaling could be s helpful when things get a little too much to handle. Nowadays, people keep bullet journals to help organize their life and make sure it keeps them on track, so it’s not always about writing to your therapist named “Diary”. I kept a daily journal for an entire year for one reason and one reason only: to make me feel better.

I came into 2016 from having such a rocky and terrifying 2015. I felt like I was slowly losing who I was and I needed to change it ASAP. I decided that I was going to keep a daily journal that would document the year 2016. 2016 was an important year for me because for the main reason that in June, I was graduating college. Who would’ve thought that there was so much more that I actually documented that are now life-long memories? It’s crazy how life works that way.

I don’t know why I stopped after 2016 was over, but I did. I noticed that towards the end of the year, my entries sounded a lot more like Facebook status updates instead of things worth documenting, but even after that – journaling really helped improve my mental health tremendously. I know everyone isn’t a writer and may not feel it be necessary to write in a notebook without a reason, but doing so helps you “talk it out” with yourself with words.

Sometimes, all you need to do is to talk out your thoughts to put them out in the world. Journaling does that while also keeping them confidential, just in case there are just some things you don’t want someone knowing like a family problem or health problem. Personally, I was going through a lot of family problems before I started writing in a journal. Although journaling didn’t help the problems go away, it did make it easier to cope and deal with my feelings in a way that didn’t make me lash out in anger.

I also wanted to start journaling to physically see the change in myself once I finished the book in a year. Although I haven’t had the time to read 365 pages of entries, I know I saw the change in just a few of the posts that I wrote. I began to write about the happy things in my life, as well as look at myself through an unbiased lens. It’s weird because I felt like journaling made me into a “real person” again because the journal had memories and moments told in my perspective, which meant I had to trust myself enough to believe these things happened the way they did.

 

Journals of the past.

 

The fact of the matter is that I was always a journal writer. I’ve kept journals since I was 9 years old, the difference between those journals and the daily one I kept was that these other journals spoke about things that happened because of other people. “Oh, this girl told a nasty rumor about me and I was so close to beating her ass at lunch today.” “Oh my god, my crush finally kissed me in the rain!” They were about moments that involved me, yeah, but these became impersonal because they never truly showcased any growing I did over the years. I actually just recently threw away a lot of my old journals because of this very reason. Why did I want to keep journals that never represented my journey?

Besides my middle school journal, the only other journal I kept was my 2016 journal.

Sometimes, journaling just shows you the journey that you forget about being on once you’ve already been there.

Because it’s already too late into 2017 to start a daily journal for the year, I’m planning to strictly keep a summer one. Because 2018 is going to be another big year for me, I might just start another daily journal then, to document that year’s accomplishments and big events that I can’t wait to actually go through.

Pick up a pen and book and start writing. Trust me, it doesn’t hurt to try. 😉

-Liz (: