It may seem strange that I am still reading A Practical Wedding now that the wedding is over, but only if you don't know that the blog is about so much more than wedding planning. It has a lot of great posts about marriage, work, family, and life in general. It's also just a very cool community.
Today is a perfect example of why I love it so much. The most recent post is an open thread on the topic of good things in our lives. Our own lives, as individuals, specifically. I, not we. The question is: "What are you proud of? What are you working on right now, personally, professionally, or otherwise that you’re amped about?" With the stipulation that these don't have to be big, life changing things. Just things that make you happy and make you feel good about yourself.
The comments have been really fun to read, everything from finishing a PhD to crocheting a hat. People wrote about buying homes, paying off debt, discovering or cultivating talents, starting businesses, years of sobriety, conquering fears, and so many other accomplishments, big and small. And then other people commented to congratulate them on these. It's just a whole lot of happy.
In fact, the theme of APW this month is The Good. We acknowledge that life isn't perfect, but also that there is good, even in the crappiest of times. Also that we should be able to be proud of the good things in our lives, especially when we have worked for and earned them, without feeling like we're being boastful. I think a lot of women have a hard time with this.
It would be easy to feel like I don't have much to be proud of, not having worked full-time in almost a year. But when I really think about it, that turns out to not be the case. I bet if we really think about it, we can all come up with some things. So here are my answers, the things I'm proud of and excited about, personally and professionally:
I'm proud that I've conquered my fears of driving on the left and driving off base. I've found my way to two places that, while not far away, involved venturing off my highway of safety. I definitely feel more confident now in my ability to navigate further and further from base.
I'm proud that I've made friends of my own and didn't let my usual shyness and insecurity keep me from putting myself out there. I'm pushing myself to be social when it would be so easy to hide out in my nice, quiet house.
I'm taking advantage of opportunities available to me. I took a Survivial Japanese Language class on base and have been practicing the phrases we learned so I don't forget them. I plan to sign up for the Japanese Basic class when a new one starts next month and really work at learning Japanese. I'm also signed up for Federal Employment and Ace the Interview workshops on base. I need to get a job and the classes are free, so there's no reason not to go.
I'm finally applying to grad school. I've wavered for years between a masters in reading or library science, so I never made the leap to actually applying to one. Finally, I picked reading and will be submitting my first application this week for an online program. Raj will be gone for a lot of the next year and the more people I talk to, the more I understand that it's entirely possible that I won't be able to get full-time employment here. So now is looking like an ideal time for grad school.
I'm enjoying the strength training I've been doing as part of my workout program and plan to do more. Weight training is kind of intimidating, but I know it's important and I do want to build more strength.
Now it's your turn. What are you proud of? What are you working on right now, personally, professionally, or otherwise that you’re amped about? Big or small.