Beach Bum in the Big Apple part 3: Oh grad school, you’re breaking my heart, you’re shaking my confidence daily

My ma wrote “MISS YOU!!” on my Facebook wall. While I was writing “I miss you too” I could feel it building up…that intense cry with the heaving-breathing was coming. There was no stopping it. It probably didn’t help that coincidentally I was listening to LCD Soundsystem’s “New York, I Love Your But You’re Bringing Me Down” at that moment.

This was perhaps my third intense cry in grad school. During our many orientations in August, staff and current students warned us that we would all cry. I knew the day would come, but I thought it would be during class, after a professor laughs at one of my articles then advises me to consider a different career path.

Well, grad school is really frakking* hard, which I expected. I keep realizing how much I love this pain-in-the-ass profession they call journalism. I grit my teeth and take the anxiety because for some reason I love this feeling, this pressure to be a better writer, to make deadlines, to multitask and expect the unpleasantly unexpected. But, I miss my family so much. I think that’s the hardest part. As of now, I really want to stay in New York for a few years and hope to start my career here. That alone breaks my heart because I know that I’ll just continue missing my family even more. However, my ma and I do talk on the phone every day, which definitely helps.

I recall being on the phone with my ma after one of my professor’s told me via email she didn’t like the subject I chose for an assignment and said I had to find a new one by Monday, and it was Wednesday. This was two days before one of my good friends from home, Courtney, was going to come visit me for the weekend. The anxiety attack/panic attack/possible ulcers from that moment definitely punched all excitement I had for my friend’s arrival in the face.

Luckily my ma is the best at convincing me that everything will be fine. She kept me from crying. Well, a little. Sometimes those words of encouragement from a mother make you cry even more.  My parents are the best at encouraging me. When I was in middle school, I told my dad I wanted a nose job. He said, “Don’t worry, everyone’s ugly in middle school. Besides, you would look stupid with a small nose.” Thank you dad! Haha!

Also, I’m so incredibly grateful that Courtney visited me that weekend. it was so nice to be around a friend from home, especially a friend that is so supportive.

With midterms already a week away, I honestly feel that so far journalism school has been beyond frustrating in the best possible way- stupid right? Not as stupid as I was feeling the first couple weeks. I still have my moments, but after getting more positive comments on assignments for my craft class (the 6-credit writing course that runs the lives of my colleagues and I) I started feeling like perhaps, I am going to be just fine.

It’s funny, because our professors took the time during class a few weeks ago to tell us that we are doing just fine, I think they realized they had to say something in order to wipe the panicked/depressed/discouraged looks off of our faces. I literally almost cried in class when our professors said that. That moment was like hearing my ma say, “I’m so proud of you.”

On Tuesday (Oct. 11) we had one-on-one evaluations with our craft professors to assess how each of us is doing so far. And, so far so good! I passed judgment day. During the evaluation I managed to tell my professors that this class/school is the kick in the ass I needed, and I thanked them for it.

-This just in! My craft professors just emailed my class and suggested we all try publishing our “Occupy Wall Street” articles we wrote yesterday, because she was really impressed by them! (Oct. 12). I’m not going to cry…I’m not going to cry…

*So…five of the amazing new friends I’ve made in my building enjoy Battlestar Gallactica. And thanks to them, now I do too! Frak=fuck. But I used frak because I didn’t want to use fuck, even though I’m using it now. 


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