All posts tagged: Graduate School

Ease in the Difficulty: Finding Opportunity in Autumn’s Transition

Photo by Bruno Ramos Lara on Unsplash It finally feels like autumn in Pennsylvania. The wind is caressing the edges of our home, making the warmth inside seem like a cozy little pod in which to hunker down. Our flannels and chunky socks are out, the coffee pot is warm, and our noses are filled with spicy scents of our last meal. The fall is coming to me with messages of rest. For some reason, the weeks leading out of summer were hectic, strained, and defined by busyness – all of which I will readily give up. In order to combat the anxious spirits, I made a decision to wake up each morning at 5:45 A.M. (!!!) and settle deeply into a morning yoga and meditation practice. When this thought first flashed through my brain, I will admit that I (internally) shouted to my inner voice, “Are you kidding me? This will never work! I am not disciplined enough.” To my surprise, after a few weeks, I find myself eager to take the time to …

The Climb

As I write the inaugural post for The Americanist Diversion, I am watching Stage 15 of the Tour de France; specifically, the climb up Mont Ventoux. I am required to multitask in July since a yearly ritual of mine is to watch the race in its entirety, and sadly, no other responsibilities subside. (This is a light season. Things get crazy when the FIFA World Cup or Olympics are in full stride.) As I watch the agony of the cyclists, I cannot help but consider the connection to the metaphorical climb that I will begin in a few weeks: the pursuit of a Ph.D. I am sure some aspect of the physical climb up Mont Ventoux has all sorts of relevant allegorical language for the academic quest of a graduate student. I promise to avoid the too-easy “Little Engine That Could” references in order to explain the slight anxiety I feel toward the coming months. I will veer dangerously close, though. Did Chris Froome nervously await Le Tour, only to blow us away by the …