There’s nothing sweeter than returning to the blogging world with white tipped fingernails on… let’s just say Doctorette Interrupted’s very own has grown up! She has decided to revamp her image, live a little more comfortably and confidently…all while being a photogenic minimalist. It’s been a little more than a month since my last blog post and I have a lot to say… (too bad these fingernails will prevent me from wanting to say MUCH…). Since my expectedly unexpected hiatus, I have done several activities, received several accolades, and grew professionally. There’s only up from here and let me share with you my top 5!
5. Enhanced Professional Image
4. New auntie
3. The correlation between myself, Frozen, and Scandal (from a professional standpoint)
2. Weight loss or something like it
1. Sorority girl
Doctorette Interrupted has been revamped… and I just thought about it. I will be blogging 5 Days a Week… something motivational, something I have learned, or something I wish to accomplish as I prepare for my doctoral studies in Higher Education. The posts will not be extremely log, but they will be work-related confessions or experiences I only wish to share with you all (look at the half smile to the left…).
Truth be told, I do not know what direction I would like to take with this blog… I know I want it but I am not really in the process of applying for my doctorate as quickly. I have semi-decided to return to school to earn a graduate certification or another masters degree, specializing in Higher Education of course. I am eager to apply to nationally recognized online programs because I love my job too much to leave it just yet. I really really like it here… I can say I love it working at Columbia College and it is soooo true. Everyone here has played a role in building my professional image and my professional confidence… you all would be surprised at how far I have come in less than a year. The transition from student to professional is truly eye-catching and hard… if you have low-confidence.
Like I stated above, these nails are making my life even more difficult than it was a year ago… until next time readers… I will explain the top five at a later date..
When you do not have anything else say, it is best to simply say “Hello?” and “How are you doing?” Thank you for your patience in my endeavor and for those who are extremely interested in this journey, I applaud you for being more interested in it as I am right now!
I do have a lot to share coming soon, so just be prepared!
Yeah, so as you can see I have commitment issues. I’ve been super excited because of the amount of feedback and comments I received about my friend Aliyah on the previous post and neglected you all maybe a tad bit interested in my life more than I am interested in it myself… I went through a week of discussing how and what I should bring forth to you all, but I always said “no…”! As a potential doctoral candidate, if I cannot keep commitments to writing a blog post, will I be as successful as I envision with my doctoral dissertations? Just thinking forward, it made me a little skeptical about my own sense of determination. I am sure this is strictly a small thought of low-confidence, but I am a little worried about my future even more than I was two posts ago. Where did I get such a lack of commitment from? I don’t know, but maybe a few stories can help us both out…
When I was in high school, I was elected to serve as some high position in Student Government (forgot), and I was always on time, always prepared, and always ready to do whatever at the drop of a hat… isn’t this a good thing? Well, I thought it was until I was prepared to assist with one of the events, but they wanted someone else… Someone else who was not as active as me, someone else who did not have the commitment I gave to the organization, and simply someone who looked better than me. From then, I made it a revengeful thought to think about what I should invest my time in and these revengeful thoughts have me on the edge of Narnia. But this is not it… I thought it was, but no… let’s try story number two.
When I was in college, I pushed myself to take 18 to 21 credit hours because I liked to maintain a busy schedule. Being idle is being unhelpful and I always love to help others (it’s the social worker/psychologist in me). At the same time, I was working three jobs and putting myself through school or putting my family through home while I suffer missing them so “through school”. Closer to my last year (formally known as my junior year, I graduated a year early), I only took 12 courses and scheduled them through the day and evening so I can have time during the day to watch Sister Sister and Reba. Let’s just say, these shows consumed me so much I neglected waking up for my 5:30 class and neglected going home to work. I became… lazy? I enjoyed sitting on my plumped bottom and not doing anything. I mean, I thought hey… I was in school, I will graduate and have a job where I can do absolutely NOTHING but still make money… boy how I was mistaken. So, yeah I will blame Reba and the Mowry twins for my lack of commitment … but it still doesn’t feel right… let’s try my last story (this has to be it)
As a young professional working at the college mentioned above in the previous story, I still haven’t learned what I want to do with my life or how to do it… all I know is that I have to please you all… I have to make YOU find purpose in my life and if I am not successful in my attempts, I do not try hard enough when I know it’s an ultimate failure to begin with… (I think we are heating it up). For example, while browsing LinkedIn one day, I realized I use to inbox people because of my curiosity on their success… but not because I was a moth, but because I was a leech. I like to suck the success out of others because that’s what I do best… I am a follower, but I do not know when I should lead? The most important persons are leaders and followers on demand, but I fake it until I make it. My confidence coach told me the reason why I never follow through with assignments is because I do not put myself first and I worry about pleasing others before pleasing myself. I never really looked at it that way… being a people pleaser is a common trait of first-generation students (and minority students) because we feel we have to prove something or we fall for anything. If we aligned ourselves with important people our label will be erased and we would be subjected to immediate glorification.
So, how does this revelation assist me going forward? At least I understand why I am never committed to anything. When someone else is successful, but they change course… I change course no matter how close I was to mastering the skill. I sometimes like to call myself a Jill of all Trades, but am I really a master of anything when I follow the lead of others who have paved a way in their careers… and I still haven’t. Well, there you have it. Story found, story known, story revealed… Thanks for listening!
February can be marked as the month of love, devotion, appreciation, and gratitude… and even as I extend my educational lust for success in Higher Education, I have a story, well many stories, to be told. One of the most character building stories is one of a young woman named Aliyah…
Almost 14 years ago, I met a young, vibrant girl during the advisory period at our high school. Bringing in my tagline’s keywords, low self-esteem and fear, I sat in the corner as I watched my brother talk with his friends. It was truly the beginning of my silent conservatism towards people. I didn’t know what it felt like to be a child, by then, I had experienced domestic abuse, child abuse, fear, depression, and every other word in the psychological dictionary referencing “pain”. Knowingly hoping this first day of school would end without anyone picking on my stout frame, a smile walked towards me. Aforementioned, I had a silent dislike for humans and did not care to speak to anyone. I wanted to continue being angelically “emo” for the rest of my life. But anyway, this smile walked up to me and introduced herself. Not knowing for the next 14 years of my life, this person would be one of the only friends who would cross the thick line to be labeled as my sister… I gave her a simple hello. I guess my smile was gay enough because she asked me if I wanted to hang out with her and her friends. She seemed popular enough to be associated with my grunge kind… but I couldn’t say no. This was the first time I felt I had made a holistic friend… sister, I will say.
Fast forward 14 years later and I sit here happily writing about her memory… sad to have to tell you all she lost her battle to cancer last July. As a young professional, a young woman, a young hopeful wife… I thought I was invincible and I darned sure thought she would be too. I lost the most prized gift God has blessed me with on earth. You never grow up thinking you would lose your best friend, sister, motivator at the tender age of 25… but I did. When she was blessed most abundantly to sleep peacefully for the rest of my life (since I am still here walking the earth), she left a big chunk of her heart in my mind. I think about the progress she made, the strength she displayed, the joy she left on everyone’s heart and I pause… am I really going to be as amazing as she was in life? She gave me so much I never knew I had… simply put, she bought me out of my darkest hour.
Two weeks before she passed, I joined her during her chemo session at the hospital. We were talking about our future and we had scheduled a date to apply for jobs after she finished treatment, we talked about our past boyfriends (or lack of) and cried a little as we reminisced on our amazing sistership. I didn’t think just two weeks later, I would give my hearts cry and feel defeated… feel I had let her down. She led me to the light during my darkest hour and I was left feeling unchained. What am I to do now without her… can I even be as successful without her adorable giggle or her much needed opinions? She gave me the motivation to push through every trial and tribulation I have ever had to face… and she will still be able to do so.
I tell you about my dear friend, Aliyah, because she is the motivation I have for pursuing an advanced degree. She knew I wanted to do this more than anything in the world and now I am here… without the physical form but with the mental form of what she meant to my professional and educational career. I got the opportunity to attend her graduation last May from South Carolina State as a Speech Language Pathologist… you see? Even while battling cancer, my girl graduated from her program. She is a big inspiration in my life. When I am feeling as if I am not able to continue due to my “scaredy-cat” thoughts, I always think of her and I feel immediately refreshed. When I begin applying for my doctoral degrees later this year/early next year… I will call on her to guide me as she always have. To open up opportunities such as the job I am currently working in now, and to give me the confidence to push through anything without her text messages/call telling me to suck it up!
Aliyah is my Valentine this month but she is also my motivator. She has been for the last 14 years and will be for as long as I can stomach this treasured life I am blessed to have here on earth. I will never be able to fill the void in my heart but I can make her proud of me… cause God knows I am too proud of her.
This post is dedicated to the memory of Aliyah Howard. My biggest fan, my biggest motivator, my … everything.
Have you ever questioned the confidence of a moth? Understood the anonymity of their shadows? Me neither, but I do see how my life relates to their lack of “limelight-worthy” adventures. Do not get moths confused with its’ praised relative, the butterfly. Even babies in the womb grow up wishing to be as free as a butterfly, as colorful as its’ wings… but behind every ounce of beauty lies a shadow… an ambitious shadow whose confidence is never questioned because it is “known” to exist through interpersonal communication, community involvement, and social declarations… but what if a shadow had a shadow who was just as shy as the next shadow… and the next. As I rant on with philosophical “know-hows”, I often sit quietly in my occupied room in my parent’s apartment wondering why my shadow casts it’s confidence before the person, in other words, me? My shadow told me a doctorate degree is extremely important and it will guide me there, introduce me to people who will bring support and confidence I’ve never received before, and write my personal statement explaining my aptitude of skills, awards, and knowledge to said program. My confidence, on the other hand, has its’ doubts.
Here’s why: Long story short, I am a first-generation honors graduate from South Carolina. I learn best through behavior modeling and reenactments (by the way this doesn’t work) of someone else’s prized moment. Many people do not understand the lack of confidence that lives in first generation students when they are compared to individuals who have a legacy or timeline of successful entrepreneurs, business people, professional lawyers, and the like. I come from a background where work is praised, but education could be nice. Put yourself in my shoes for a minute, think of it this way: You come home from school eager to share your success with your family, but they do not understand. They say “congratulations” or “I’m so proud of you!” and while this is enough to get you by, is it enough to keep you confident in your talents? That’s where the metaphor of the moth returns… sometimes sharing your story with people who are not equipped to finding your accomplishments a blessing… is a daunting tasks. Don’t get me wrong, my family has been extremely support, well immediate ones I should say, in my education career. Especially my mother… she’s my biggest fan here on earth. I see her smile and I know I’ve accomplished something. But it still leaves my soul on a whim, because my confidence is hidden through layers of shadows and tasks… similar to the moth’s story.
So, I ask you as I begin this journey, a moth in the higher education system, does one ever take the time to truly ask and reflect on the confidence of a moth? Will the moths forever hold a place behind their beloved relatives, the butterfly? My name is Latoya and I am an upcoming doctoral applicant pursuing a degree in Higher Education with emphasis on Student Affairs and Instruction. I am the moth with questionable confidence, but you’ll find out once you decide to continue reading just how butterfly-like I can be… with the moth label of course. Who knows what I will write about, that’s left to the intellection Gallup states as one my top five strengths. But if you are just as eager to follow me on my pursuit of a doctorate degree, I welcome you in my moth-like world. This is what I’d like to call a “confidence-boosting-applicant-inspiring-young-woman” memoir. It will be exciting to have you along!
P/S: Not all of us are clothes-biters or nocturnal nomads… some of us live and work in a professional world where we praise the daylight and shy away from the night… stay tuned, reader… this is going to be a long ride!