On 1 June 2010 I started my MA in Theology and Culture at Concordia University Irvine, CA. Thus begins a four year jaunt into the lifestyle of the grad student.
The other day when I was reading an article in my running magazine (Runner’s World) I came across a section where the author was commenting on how he trained for a triathlon during grad school because HE HAD SO MUCH TIME ON HIS HANDS.
Since starting my degree in June I’ve read at least 700 pages of text, written another 30-40, taken several quizzes and submitted six assignments…all in 38 days.
Meanwhile I have this lovely little wife to spend time with, a dog to take on walks, two jobs to close up, a VBS to run, a niece to watch on the weekdays, a social life to be concerned with, a move to prepare for, a trip to Peru to plan, my own physical training (which, oddly enough I am taking up the idea of training for a triathlon) and oh yeah, my spiritual discipline of prayer, devotional reading etc.
Not to mention my blogs, which have gone sadly neglected for over a month.
I am still searching for the balance that I hope will come. One week I focus more on studying, only to the detriment of my relationships. The next week I focus on friends only to fall behind on my studies.
For right now I think on a quote from my colleague Jacob Youmans when he said, “Sometimes, to stay in balance means saying ‘no’ to great opportunities.”
I also remember the axiom, “Living things first” or “People over programs.”
Maybe these good words will help me find the balance I so earnestly desire and my life so desperately needs.
For now, the posts will probably become rare, endangered little animals trying to find a safe habitat in my slightly hectic life. That is, at least until we move to Texas and I have an opportunity to reorganize my life and set a new schedule, that prayerfully will be settled with a new balance.
In the end, I am not surprised things got busy. I knew they would. Everyone I know who is in grad school ( or was in grad school) shares that masters work pushes your schedule as well as your mind.
After all, a masters degree not only expands your knowledge base, but should hopefully exhort your practical skills and set you up for the Holy Grail (or maybe not so holy) of a PhD.
Although I’m not surprised, I didn’t exactly “know” what was coming.
Or maybe I am just using the degree work as an excuse to lag on some things…who knows?
But as for all that extra time that author had in grad school, I am wondering what program he was in…