So, I am taking part in this new project on binduwiles.com called 21.5.800. Starting today participants are to write 800 words per day for the next 21 days and do yoga for 5 out of each 7 days. Since I have just begun doing Yoga again after taking a few years off and since I really need to get back to the daily writing routine I seem to never have managed to keep up, I think this is a fabulous project to partake in. Go to binduwiles.com to learn more!
Where is my life leading me today? Well, in multiple directions. I am currently in graduate school earning a MFA in creative writing with a focus on creative nonfiction and a MA in mental health counseling. I have also recently applied to law school. The truth is, I want to earn all three of these degrees, but I am not sure if it is feasible. I love writing and I know that I will finish the MFA degree because I will only have three residencies left to complete. However, I need something more than writing. I need to go out in the community and take action. I used to think this innate drive within me was a curse and have been fighting it for years, trying to talk myself out of it. But, I have come to realize this is a calling and not one that everyone else gets and I need to take action. My dilemma is how best to serve others. As I continue with my mental health counseling classes during the summer while waiting to hear back about law school, I have come to realize just how much I love and value what I am learning. It is eye opening to say the least and gives me such a focused view on where the needs are for women and children, the population I most want to work with. Yet, I have this powerful drive to go to law school that I just cannot shake. I have ignored that, too. For two years I have tried to focus elsewhere and yet my heart just keeps returning to my love of law and what it used to (and hopefully one day will again) mean to the community and those who need its stability and access to the most. How do I choose? I would love to say that this is something that I have been deliberating over for just a short amount of time, but the truth is I have been trying to choose for the last several years and no one choice seems to satisfy me.
I was in a debate the other night with a friend about what needs to be done to constitute change in America, especially for those who are most in need. My friend believes that you have to start with the top echelon, remove the politicians that are self-serving and replace them with those who are truly seeking change rather than a power position which allows them to exploit. I see this need, but I don’t know how feasible it is to start at the top. If there is one thing I have learned it is that it is very difficult to change the beliefs/point of view of an adult. A child, however, is different. It is my belief that we should start with the children, providing them with programs and education that will allow them to become powerful agents for change as they grow older. How can we fill Congress with those politicians who are seeking to do the right thing when there just aren’t that many to elect? Once they are elected they are forced to shut up and assimilate and what they had idealistically thought they could accomplish is sidelined. Wouldn’t it be better to educate those who have yet to form self-serving opinions and ethics, i.e. children? Maybe in the future there will be a larger pool to choose from when we go to the polls.
I have an extraordinary love/hate relationship with politics. I, for a brief moment, considered earning a Ph.D. in American Politics, but quickly changed my mind because I am too passionate about the horribleness of our political system and I was not sure I could make it through the program without a nervous breakdown from sheer frustration. It was then that I realized I wanted to work at a grassroots level helping to empower those who feel powerless and providing necessary services to them whether that be counseling or legal in order to better their lives. I see the devastation at the lower echelons, the parts of society that the majority of people I know bitch about, but nobody wants to do anything to help change. I was, and in some ways still am, a member of the lower echelon. That is where I want to be affecting change. But, this still does not solve my dilemma. Maybe the decision from law school will determine which path I will take this next year, however, there is always next year…