Tuesday, February 17, 2015

An English Major Fiesta of Greatness

It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts. 
~Attributed to Harry S Truman

Guess what, kids? 

I'm in graduate school. For the second time, in fact. I earned my MA in 2006 and now, I'm back for another degree.

So far, my graduate experience has been challenging, invigorating, exhilarating, and inspiring.  As a teacher, I am experiencing the classroom in ways I haven't for over a decade.  As a student, I'm feeling confident and purposeful -- adjectives which did NOT describe my first experiences in graduate school almost a decade ago. I'm a nerdy, dorky, easily-excited learner, and that personality (I am finding) works well in school, whether you're at the front of the class or one of its members.  

I think the main reason I'm enjoying graduate school is this:

I no longer harbor any delusions about my own brilliance.  I know I'm smart enough to be there, but I'm not the smartest in the room; I'm not even ONE of the smartest in the room.  So I don't worry about sounding impressive, or trying to seem as though I understand everything being said; I'm not there to try to astound the wanna-be-PhD-intelligentsia or to make sure I say the smartest things in class. I'm there to learn, engage and grow.  I love it when a fellow student makes a good point.  I may-or-may-not have clapped for someone today when they announced they were presenting at a conference this weekend.  Excited-teacher has morphed into excited-student, and I'm allowing myself the freedom to enjoy this oh-so-expensive experience of being a full-time student in my thirties -- because who gets to do that!?! I'm more confident now in who I am and what I'm capable of learning. It's freeing. It's exciting. I'm loving it.

This time around, I've discovered that the classroom is full of my people -- learners and thinkers and pontificate-rs and theorists and humorists and entertainers and book-loving nerds.  We over analyze anything that's not nailed down and we think of ridiculous suppositions and we make mistakes regularly and we quote dead people and we quote living people and sometimes, we even quote them correctly.  It's like an English Major Fiesta of Greatness

I've found my tribe, ya'll.   

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Finding Out The Greatness

Jesus, I am resting, resting
In the joy of what thou art;
I am finding out the greatness
Of thy loving heart.

O how great thy loving kindness.
Vaster, broader than the sea!
O how marvelous thy goodness,
Lavished all on me!
Yes, I rest in thee, Beloved,
Know thy certainty of promise,
And have made it mine.

Simply trusting thee, Lord Jesus,
I behold thee as thou art,
And thy love, so pure, so changeless,
Satisfies my heart;
Satisfies its deepest longings,
Meets, supplies its every need,
Compasseth me round with blessings;
Thine is love indeed!

-- Jean Sophia Pigott (1876)

Friday, December 14, 2012

Many Dark Places

“I wish it need not have happened in my time," said Frodo.
"So do I," said Gandalf, "and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”  
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring 

“The world is indeed full of peril and in it there are many dark places. 
But still there is much that is fair. And though in all lands, love is now mingled with grief
it still grows, perhaps, the greater.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien

Friday, December 7, 2012


Patience is the ability to count down before you blast off. ~Author Unknown

Cookie baking with Faith.
House decorating with Mom.
Shopping with The Sisters.
Lunches downtown with Dad.

Firelight every night.
Family dinners.
Christmas movies.
Kitty time on the back porch.
Books, books, books -- under comfy blankets, while curled on the back porch, with a hot mug of cocoa.
Brothers-in-law making fun of me :)

All things I want to be doing soooo badly, and instead (and until the 18th) I am doing this:

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Via Tricia

I've been reading Tricia's blog for two years -- and this post is just worth sharing.  Tricia and I have mutual friends, but we have never met.  She lost her husband unexpectedly two years ago, and I have found her writing to be both moving and beautiful.  This post was just too, too good not to share.  Such truth.

Joy flows from the discovery of God.
He is in every circumstance where we wish to find him.
The joy comes in finding him,
knowing him,
over and over and over.

-- Tricia Lott Williford