Friday, May 1, 2009

Difficult Decisions

"In hindsight, what I needed to do was forgive myself for disappointing my parents, and let go of the guilt. I needed to just accept that they would be unhappy for awhile, and that once I did well in my career, they would come around. I just needed to trust that I made the right decision for myself, and that all would be good. Years later, I finally learned that lesson." --Stephanie Qualio, Back In Skinny Jeans

I love reading Stephanie's blog because it always manages to touch on a subject that I can relate back to my life. In ways, it is strange how this person and myself are so similar but perhaps we are all more similar than we realize. Maybe it is when we take a chance to open ourselves up to the world and admit to our vulnerabilities, that we realize we all are more similar than we are different. We all have one thing in common, and that is life. We're not sure why we're here, or what happens after life, but we try out best to live our lives well and learn from our mistakes along the way. We are all here to help each other along the way and ultimately our survival depends on one another.

So, when I read stuff like this, I don't take it with a grain of salt. I am a constant learner. While I tend to focus on my problems a lot (and I do), it's not actually about focusing on the negative for me. It's really just more of a curiosity. I am always trying to understand things and why things are the way they are. Sometimes I find an answer, and sometimes there is not a definite answer or the one I was hoping to find. Either way, I constantly am seeking enlightenment as a person. I am always trying to grow, learn, evolve. I think for me that will always be a theme in my life.

This quote is nice at a time like now. I've got the decision to make about moving to San Diego to pursue my continuing education without a lot of support from my parents. I know my mom doesn't want me to go, but she says she can't stop me (after all, her parents let her go to Mexico and Peru). My dad on the other hand is less passive. He's trying to convince me to go to Chicago where I'll be closer to home and is attempting to bribe me by offering to pay for my housing and school. He's also got my aunt trying to convince me to go to school in Florida where the other half of my family lives because at least that's closer than Cali.

My therapist assures me this is just their way of showing that they really love and care about me. I know this is true, but it's still a little frustrating. I don't like that my dad can't trust me to make the best decision for myself. Also, he undermines my ability to chose a good program and acts like he knows more about it than me when I am the one who's spoken to professionals in the field. I don't think he'll ever take me seriously as an adult unless I just do what I need to do and prove to him that I don't need his help financially. He tells me straight out that I will fail. The only way to prove him wrong is just that, PROVE him wrong.

Why Cali? I'm not really sure. I was having second thoughts about Chicago because it's too cold there. Also, I didn't feel like the program was that great. Plus, the idea of investing 40K and going into debt just did not settle well w/ me. Then while in San Francisco, I was doing some research and stumbled upon the USD program. I wasn't looking for schools in Cali, it just sort of happened. I was looking up an industry professional and discovered she did a certificate program before her Masters. I emailed her and a few weeks later we spoke over the phone. She assured me that a certificate program was the way to go.

So, again: why Cali? Well, for starters, nice weather, I always wanted to live in Cali, I've got a couple of friends in SD (and more throughout the state), and now I have a mentor there. But overall, it's just a gut feeling. I have no idea what the future will hold, but like Steph says I just need to trust that I am making the right decision for myself. After that, everything else will just have to fall into place...

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