Life Update: Grad School, Work, Friends, and all that Good stuff
“So what had happened was..”
Whew, life is getting crazy out chea (‘here’ for my proper folk). Been a minute, been awhile (did you sing this in Jhene Aiko voice too? Or was it just me?). I know y’all. I had plans to drop this blog post about lessons I learned in the past ten years by my birthday and my birthday was a month ago chile. I can’t keep up but nonetheless, delayed not the denied. Ok? You would think I could start a YouTube channel by my verbiage but who knows, maybe not maybe so. I am writing to provide an update on things with me. It’s been going and going, and I've been putting my blog on hold.
Black Ladies in Public Health
This is my first semester starting grad school and I am really enjoying it. I have hybrid courses which calls for me to commute to one of the main campuses on set weekends. This journey had connected me to some amazing people. From attending a Historically Black College/University to a PWI, I knew that I still wanted to be a part of a community of people that look like me that also hold the same interest, public health. As defined by the CDC,
Public health is the science of protecting and improving the health of people and their communities. This work is achieved by promoting healthy lifestyles, researching disease and injury prevention, and detecting, preventing and responding to infectious diseases. Overall, public health is concerned with protecting the health of entire populations. These populations can be as small as a local neighborhood, or as big as an entire country or region of the world.
I am in a Facebook group titled, Black Ladies in Public Health and I love every bit of it. It's refreshing, inspiring, informative and supportive. In this group, I had the opportunity of interviewing a non-profit founder which is truly motivating for me. I received tips and I even shared advice. Here’s my tip for you:
Whatever it is that you're doing or wanting to do, connect with people that are also doing it. You can learn so much from one another.
Facing the Hard Truth
I was able to come across an opportunity that I had believed was great for me especially starting fresh in the public health field. One of the members in the Black Ladies in Public Health group shared an extensive list of jobs, internships, and fellowships. I read that the Department of State Health Services had a fellowship that was perfect, and I felt I was a great candidate. I joined in for informational webinars, received recommendation letters. I had all of my ducks in a row plus I created a plan, one that I dreamed of changing jobs because my current job was extremely frustrating with the demands. I planned to submit my two weeks' notice in April, take off for the entire month of May and begin my new journey in June which was when the fellowship was going to begin. I submitted my application on time, I followed up with the program manager and I was like, "Ok God! I see that things could be working out in my favor.".
As time was ticking, my anxiety skyrocketed. I was fully aware of when they would be calling for interviews because it was expressed in the webinar and when time came closer, I was there waiting for my phone to ring. It didn't ring. I even written about it in my journal and hoping and praying that was going to be the change I needed. I thought this is what God had wanted for me, as much as I wanted it for myself. I became distraught feeling like I wasn't selected by allowing myself to feel rejected when it wasn’t confirmed. Today, on April 13, 2022 I received an email explaining that I wasn't selected. Out of 275 candidates, only 38 were selected and I wasn’t one of them. When I read the email, I had already knew I wasn't chosen but it’s like I finally put it at the back of my mind now y’all want to send me an email? I put myself through an emotional rollercoaster that entire process for something that wasn’t meant for me but it sure did feel like it. That was difficult to face.
Accepting where I am now
Moving on, I shifted my perspective with my current job. I devoted to express more gratitude and write down what I was grateful for because at a point I found myself complaining about it almost every single day and it was the same prayer I prayed for when I was applying for it. It's crazy how that happens. I committed to continue learning everything I can as it also relates to the field of public health. Since I began working, I have been told how great I am at my job therefore, I'm using it to my advantage by improving my performance. I even decorated my office a bit. The change needed to start with where I was currently, not by running away from it. I don't know if this is something I want to do long term but what I do know is that God humbled me real quick, and for that I am appreciative of the lesson. Here’s a journal prompt:
Reflect on what you prayed to God for, and reflect on how you've responded to that exact thing when you received it.
A Call for Accountability
Speaking on reflection. I've done quite a bit of it these past few months. I was going to mention it in the other blog post that I planned but failed to post but here it is anyway. Showing up for people. I had to zero in on that, like "how have you shown up for others regardless of if they have reached out to you?". It's common to see posts and tweets about everyone's attitudes on things like friendships. "If you don't reach out to me, I'm not going to reach out to you" type of narrative. I didn't want that narrative to become of me. I thought about my friends and the truth is, I felt guilty of how I haven't shown up for them. I felt that I could do a better job of it because I care about my friendships. It also required accountability, because there was a moment when I never apologized when it was well deserving of one. Time has a way with things, life of course and as I continue to move through life for as long as I am here, I am more intentional with my approach. I recently shared a post that discussed how adult friendships are. It's not how it was when we were younger, there are so many different things we all experience that one may not know about and learning to not take it personal when we don't know about it. That post was assuring because it's true. When it comes to the people in our lives, I would say to hold more compassion and understanding of those situations. Recognize patterns or particular behaviors that may seem unsual, if could be a sign for something for more deeper than you know. You never know.
What’s your take on adult friendships these days?
Am I balancing life well?
Other than that. My life feels like it’s on autopilot, consisting of working plus working overtime, school by zooming and commuting, spending time with loved ones, starting workout plans and stopping them, listening to podcasts (@balancedblackgirl, @therapyforblackgirls), watching three to four shows at a time like Abbott Elementary, Bel-Air, Good Girls and Yellowstone. I haven't cooked like I used to; I've been door dashing and air frying it up, but on some days I eat healthy and aim to have more discipline with my meals that include meatless meals and then the other days I may eat out or eat ice cream for the evening though I want to eliminate dairy entirely. How my life is now, I see and understand how big of an impact of paying for convenience these days is because it can get overwhelming. I understand that I won‘t always have an organized closet where I color coordinate or arrange by the type of item it is. I understand that my breakfast won’t always be a cooked meal, it may just be an a granola bar and some orange juice. I can't do it all and I refuse to sacrifice my sleep to do so. This is my reality for the time being. Instead of finishing my 5-6 page paper, I wrote this blog just for yall, and me. Be safe out there and alway alert. I am signing out, peace, love and hair-grease.