Tag Archives: school

When the fun crashes together

Currently jammin’ to: Want You More by Draper

I actually got introduced to Draper at SXSW. It’s surprising that he isn’t more well known, but he was definitely one of the best introductions that I got from SXSW this year. I’m excited to keep hearing great music from him. Half the time I wrote this post I was listening to his music.

I’ve had a thought to update this multiple times before now, and yet I kept telling myself “give yourself some time to think and then talk about it here.” But that time to think never really came, and thus a post wasn’t written either until now, a month plus later (and then some, because I totally started this post almost two weeks ago). It’s funny what you decide to make time for sometimes. I didn’t make enough time for me to even think through recent things occurring in my life, but I had time to catch up on all the Supernatural episodes out there (I watched a couple of seasons) and start White Collar again. Priorities? Or procrastination? Or maybe just avoiding the serious stuff because it’s “less fun” perhaps. That seems somewhat of a likely reason.

In the end, you still gotta face what you may or may not have wanted to face though. I’m sure I’m still holding off on thinking of some things even still, and for now I’m okay with that. But I also may want to wake up just a little bit more to what’s been going on in my life too. Maybe.

FYI, like previously mentioned, I started this post then held off finishing it for almost two weeks, so there’s some disorganization because I didn’t completely scrap what I had previously written, but just decided to add in (like an addendum) the most recent things.

the new things in life, surprise surprise

Since my last post, many things have surprisingly actually happened. The best moment so far? Getting accepted into the University of Dallas’s Masters of Science Communication Disorders program! The worst moment so far? Wrecking my car. And then there’s everything in between and after. It’s been fun, y’all.

Let’s start with getting accepted, because that actually occurred the earliest of recent events since my last post, I think. For the past two years, I’ve been trying to get into a master’s program to become a Speech Language Pathologist (SLP). This is something I was introduced to at the very end of my undergraduate days and it stuck with me ’til even now. I can really only provide a cheesy cliche type of reasoning as to why I want to become one, but in the end it’s the truest of statements. I’ve always enjoyed helping people when I can and listening to their problems to troubleshoot. It’s why I originally went down the psychology path (minus the fact that business just seemed so meh and I didn’t get into Goizuetta anyhow), to eventually become a therapist. Along the way, I discovered the field of linguistics and fell in love with that. My head is always thinking, and I’ve always desired to understand others better, even if unsuccessfully. And language, beautiful language, is argued as the main difference between us humans and other animals. Either way, communication is key to understanding another person, thus knowing how to communicate is incredibly important. With the desire to help others and the passion for language combined, becoming an SLP just seemed like the most ideal job. It didn’t hurt that typical starting base salary was decent and that the job market for it was still growing and in demand. And though I didn’t try to run down that path right away, eventually (aka two years ago) I did decide it was time to truly pursue it. And so I did. And there were failures, like getting rejected from UTD twice, and there were successes, like basically making a 4.0 at UT for my prerequisites and finally being accepted by 3 out of 4 of the masters programs. It took time and dedication, but it finally happened. So starting next Fall, I will be back in Dallas and moving forward in the career I’ve hoped to have.

In addition to my acceptance, other events have transpired within my life that are very much positive. I randomly attended the end of SXSW this year and got some free swag, free food/drinks, and free shows. I met up old friends (S. Chen & Y. Yip) and gained new ones, and also finally went climbing at Austin Bouldering Project. It’s been a place I’ve been “attempting” to go to for a couple of years now, so finally experiencing it (for free) is definitely a highlight. I hope to continue climbing, maybe go some more while I’m in Austin, and even when returning back to Dallas keep up with it. Now that I’ve bought shoes for it, I’m bound to go a few more times. It’d be fun to keep doing, despite the callouses it’s bound to give me.

For a couple weeks in March to April, I was house and dog sitting for a friend who was traveling. These cute little pups were my companions and kept me on a somewhat regular schedule, surprise surprise.

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Additionally, my sister (plus one) finally came to visit me in Austin! It was her first time back in Austin in over a few years, if I recall correctly. All we did was eat and pokemon hunt, but it was a great weekend. I got to try Sway out, a Thai restaurant that was highly recommended to me, along with getting $1 oysters and some Gourdoughs. Good food and pokemon hunting is always welcomed, and often a typical sight when I’m hanging with my sister as of now.

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Additionally, I finally went on somewhat of a hike in Austin! I’ve been wanting to hike more, especially since Austin has so many available trails and places to go nearby, but I just haven’t found the people to go with. While I could hike by myself, I always considered it a potential safety issue. Plus it’s just not as fun when you’re alone.

360 bridge, hiking, bridge, austin

view of 360 bridge from our hike

And somehow, I’ve found myself living it up much more frequently than I ever would have thought. Each weekend brings a different adventure, whether it’s girls night, a music concert (Bassjackers – also a new intro for me), SXSW, St. Patty’s Day Parade, or just fun times with friends, it’s been a ride. And on this ride, sadly, came a crash.

I’ve been in accidents before, of my own cause and due to others, and I will admit that I am more prone to speeding than going below or at limit when driving, but this has been the worst by far. And still, I am incredibly thankful for 1. not being hurt minus some bruises from the air bags, and 2. not hurting anyone else. Ultimately, combine a winding/curving downhill road, wet pavement/road, close to balding tires, less than 100% mental awareness, possibly a little too much speed and a car with not the best of breaks, and you get hydroplaning into multiple spin outs and curb/trees hits. The result is a ruined back bumper, the right mirror and rear light missing, some auto body damage, deployed side airbags on both sides, and a broken left rear spring/axle of a car. The good part, besides no one getting hurt, was that I had already exited for my apartment and was somehow able to drive my car to my apartment which was about a mile away. In some incredible feat, given the state of my car (can we go back to the fact that my car’s left rear was literally sitting on my tire due to the axle being broken?) and my mental mind, I managed to reverse park my car at my apartment complex. The car itself, minus the body damage, actually runs fine since the front wasn’t damaged (aside from the right mirror). Considering how much it would cost to repair an axle/spring, replace the airbags, get a new bumper/mirror/light, and everything else though, ultimately what was likely to happen is that we sell the car for someone to scrap for parts or fix up themselves. Fortunately, my cousin has lots of car connections and a friend of his bought the car as is and towed it away to be fixed up with his own car repair connections. Of course, I still needed a car to get to work, especially given how I was commuting from my friend’s house while I still dog sit, so my dad graciously drove the car my sister’s been using (which is my brother’s old car) down to me. And now, I’m back in the white Toyota car family again.

car crash, altima coupe, crash, towing, towed

my car being towed away to be forever gone but fixed for another

Lessons learned, but really

I’m not gonna lie, I somehow handled the whole crashing my car and airbags deploying a lot better than I thought I would. I don’t know the exact reasons as to why it didn’t shake me as much as it should’ve. Maybe I’ve somehow rationalized to myself that more of the situation was out of my hands to create the perfect storm than I care to claim responsibility for. Either way, the thing I ultimately felt most upset about was the financial burden it has created upon myself and my parents. As someone who has been in school and working part-time (heavy inflection on the part) for the past year, I’ve relied heavily upon my parents for financial assistance. Now that I’m continuing to a Master’s, my financial capabilities for the next two years are going to stay pretty limited still. I am well aware of many of the financial burdens my parents currently face, both from me and due to other situations in their lives, and to know I have contributed to it in this way really riddles me with guilt and shame. Does this mean I won’t ever speed again? Sadly, probably not. I know myself well enough to not be able to make that promise. Will I be more careful about my driving? I would hope so, and I think I am already being a bit more careful. One thing that definitely was reinforced was my preference to not drive. While I am never one to shy away from meeting with friends despite a far distance (hello living in Arlington and having friends in Plano), I still prefer to catch a ride.

There is, of course, some considerations for re-evaluating my life choices right now. Recently, as previously stated, I’ve been fairly active and frequently in some sort of compromised state of mind, albeit usually nothing too crazy. Mental capacities aside, the expenditures I’ve continued to collect definitely continue to burn a hole in pants that seem close to combustion. To be fair, they could (and probably should) be a lot worse given how active I’ve been, but in the end that slow fire is becoming a blaze. It might be time to be more of a homebody. I can’t say this will definitely happen, as I already considered making plans to attend Euphoria this weekend (which I did, more on that later) even though two weeks ago I had no intentions of it. I still plan to be adventurous and experience new things that inherently are risky, because I still believe in living my life to the fullest and cause I like to try new things, but maybe I’ll take it a bit slower. Maybe I’ll forsake some plans with friends so that I’m more responsible to myself and to my parents. Maybe I’ll take on another job or get a new one over the summer.

Or maybe not. I really don’t know. I want to be a better person, I want to make the right choices, but I also want to enjoy my life. I don’t want to keep feeling like a black hole of burden to my parents, who have always provided me more than I can ever hope for and now seem so much older in a scary way. I want to be able to provide them with the luxury of life’s greatest comforts and sights. I want to be able to proudly know I am independently supporting myself while servicing others who are in need. I want to make my own ice cream and eat it too (because I don’t really like cake, and it’s more fun when you do it yourself than buy it from someone else). And so the selfish side battles the responsible side, both of which win different battles and create who I am. Is it your actions that are important or your intentions? I think both: intentions only go so far, but actions made of the wrong intentions can still be just as harmful.

These thoughts these days

To no surprise, I’ve been thinking a lot like always. Or really, I should say I have had a lot of various thoughts come to mind. But actual thinking time has been a bit more minimal than it probably should. I actually wrote a couple of paragraphs on one of these thoughts already but decided to delete them and not bring them back up. It’s a debate I don’t really have interest in speculating  more about, so to bring it up in my post seems irrelevant.

I’ve recently found myself engaging in things I had previously stated were unlikely or even outright refusing to do. And yet there I was, doing what I said I wouldn’t do, and being okay with it. I don’t want to call myself a hypocrite, but ultimately it does seem quite like that in some of the situations. Granted, I’m not one to truly say never to things, but the fact that I feel like I keep eating my own words is definitely making me consider why my acceptance values or actions have changed.

Recently, I’ve found myself engaging in more casual relationships. I’ve never been against them, to be fair, but I did speculate with a friend on it not too long ago about why I’ve never had one before. The words I said then are still true, and yet still I engaged in what I said was unlikely to happen. If I were to put it in a positive light, I could say I just hadn’t found the right scenario to allow these things to occur until now.

In a separate situation, I found myself offered certain recreational drugs that I had told myself I would never try, but then found myself contemplating to try. I actually didn’t part take in said drugs, but the fact that I definitely considered it kind of shocked me. Here I was, stating with a clear mind my strong refusal to ever trying them, and then there I was, under the influence, truly considering trying them out. Again, I do know that I’ve always been open to trying things, and I was also already mentally compromised in some way, but still. It just makes me wonder how easily I might give up some of my values and choose to do the exact opposite if the right conditions are set. Scary.

I meant to talk more in-depth on my thoughts, but it seems today is not much of a contemplation sort of day for me. Instead, I’ll continue with the even more recent updates since when I first began this post. I may add in some thoughts below though.

Fun, friends, and family

As previously mentioned, I ended up going to Euphoria (first time!) a couple weekends ago. It was an absolute blast with incredibly chill vibes and amazing people and music. I wouldn’t have considered it were it not for the fact that my friend had incredibly discounted VIP 3 day camping passes due to investing in the event. Additionally, they really set it up for success. Euphoria offered free shuttle rides from UT and downtown Austin to and from the grounds with Bus to Show (BTS) which, despite mass pandemonium to get home Saturday night, is an awesome and brilliant inclusion. To me, it shows they care about our safety more than they care about their pockets or judgement. If we truly cared about saving lives, we should offer safe alternatives rather than just outright rejection or punishment. Words true to things beyond just free rides, such as to abortions, but that’s a bit too serious for this right now.

Wiz Khalifa, Wiz, Euphoria, Euphoria 2017, music festival

Wiz was at Euphoria. if I didn’t seen him at Emory years back, I saw him now :)

In any case, I never did end up camping there simply because I was still dog sitting at the time, so I couldn’t, but it was definitely a great experience. One that I hope to be able to attend again. During my time there, I met new friends and even met with someone I hadn’t seen in almost a decade, I went back stage, found some new artists with great music, indulged too much in some overpriced but delicious food, and floated away in the clouds whilst dancing. It was definitely a great time without doing too much either, and I am incredibly grateful in having been able to part take in it.

This past weekend, I had a much calmer weekend compared to others. I finally went home for the first time in a month. Considering that I usually go back every other weekend, it was amazing I went 4 weekends in a row without going back. That was mostly due to the dog sitting though, but still. For this weekend, it was mostly about family. I spent some time with my sister Pokemon hunting and taking advantage of the Easter specials they were having. I played therapist to some issues at home. I unintentionally came back for my nephew’s birthday and sort of celebrated with him. I played some volleyball with friends, at one point sober and at another not so much. And I watched a bit of Netflix. I’ve learned I’m really bad at starting new things (shows, etc) frequently. I just go to what I already know I like even if I’ve already seen it a few times, despite a growing list of things I do want to watch or recommended stuff. It’s the same with manga and sometimes books. It’s not to say I won’t ever try them out, but it’s as if I have to be in the right kind of mood or situation to finally give it a shot. And it seems somewhat random when it does happen. Anyways.

birthdays, nephew, six years old, celebrations, cake

my youngest nephew turned six!

It was a nice weekend. Some packing was done as my moving date and such has been finalized. I have one or two weekends left living in Austin, this weekend being one of them. My only other one is actually Mother’s day weekend, which I didn’t realize, so this weekend may actually end up being my last weekend being in Austin. I had hoped to go to Hamilton Pool that weekend, but that may have to be done another time.

I forget to mention, but I am actually taking an online Biology course that has been going relatively well. I definitely don’t have to try too hard for it, which is a wonderful plus for me. Even though I’m not working (at my job) as much as I’d like to and technically shouldn’t have all that much to deal with, I’m still glad I don’t have to devote too much time and energy to this class to get a decent grade. Hopefully that continues for the next few weeks. It definitely is kind of annoying that the tests are always on weekends, but at least I can usually take them quickly.

Oh, and another thing that happened was me cutting my hair. I decided to cut off 19+ inches of hair. Well actually, I decided on 19 inches to sell/donate, and then my sister consequently cut off a lot more later for styling (which ended up being finished by her teacher). Long story short, I now have an asymmetrical bob of a haircut. Haven’t had this short of hair since undergrad… and changing from hair down past my waist to barely touching my shoulders is a definite difference. But I’m totally enjoying it. Anyways!

snapchat, haircut, asymmetrical haircut, filtered photos

apparently I haven’t saved many pics of myself with my haircut, so this snap will have to do

Things to look forward to besides getting a lot of new music:

-Middlelands! It’s happening pretty quickly. I’m super excited.
-visiting Hamilton Pool
-seeing old undergraduate friends (both in Atlanta and those who come to Texas)
-finally trying Franklins BBQ for the first time (already pre-ordered :D)
-seeing lots of friends
-playing volleyball more
-climbing more

How much of this will actually happen? Who knows. Right now it looks like all of it should happen, but you never know what will really happen until it does. I’ll try to give a music update at some point, but I may wait until after Middlelands, or do one for Euphoria/SXSW/etc first. In any case, this post has gone on long enough and probably has become even more disorganized. For those of y’all who stuck around to actually read all of this, I hope you found it somewhat entertaining or enlightening.

Have a great day!

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a really impressive title goes here

I wanted to write another blog post to update like I said I would, but I found that I wasn’t sure what to write about at this current time. So please bear with me as I try to come up with something witty, or whatever. =)

Normally I add in a currently jammin’ to song from Soundcloud, but as Soundcloud has started to try to increase profit margin rather than stick true to their original ideology, it’s become more difficult sometimes to get the song I want on there. I still chose one this time, but it may be time to change to another site to stream music on here… Sigh.

Currently jammin’ to:

This jam is a bit long since it’s a long mix rather than an individual song, but definitely worth it. Additionally, I recently saw Ekali live at The Kingdom in Austin a couple weekends ago. The openers were so-so, but when Ekali took the stage it definitely was pretty awesome. I will say that the lights were a bit blinding for such a small space. I literally felt blind at times and had to step back further from the stage at times in order to reorient myself because of how blinding the laser lights were at times. I think some of it was due to the size of the room though, being so small allowed for so much reflection. At least it wasn’t stuffy and hot. So glad I got to check out Ekali.

Summer finale

Summer is coming to a close, surprisingly fast. I can’t believe it’s already August. I have so much I need to get together, start to do. I feel like I’m so behind. And yet there’s so much that I’ve also already done. It’s crazy. It’s also amazing to realize that I only have one more semester left of my current classes before I enter (hopefully) into my Master’s program. As I write this, I think “shouldn’t I be working on my statement instead?” considering that I have to have one by September 15th for UT Dallas… umm, yeah whoops.

And what a summer it has been. Lots of ups, lots of downs. Not quite what I imagined it would be, and still not where I want it to be, but hopefully with some luck, some talks, and some work it will get to where I want it. I will say this much, I have learned and experienced a lot this summer. This year overall, really. I am looking forward to continuing to learn more and experience many wonderful things. It feels fitting to reflect on some of the new things I’ve gotten to experience, but I think I’d rather just focus on the recent things that have occurred since I last posted.

My final summer class is winding down, ending next week! Eek, that is incredibly soon. I have no idea where the time went in this class. Least to say I did not enjoy it as much as my previous class, but I am glad for the grades I’ve been getting (somehow keeping my 4.0 GPA) and I greatly appreciate having taken this class with a friend. It definitely made the whole experience more bearable and easier.

Recently, I returned back from attending a wedding in California for my boyfriend’s cousin. It involved my boyfriend’s whole immediate family, so needless to say it was not like our Mexico trip together, but we still had fun and he finally got to visit Disneyland for the first time, something his father promised him a long time ago when he was still young. The wedding itself was also something wonderful as well. Even though I hardly knew the couple and was only there politely as one of the distant cousin’s girlfriend, I still really took the experience to heart. I think I was just feeling quite emotional that day, but I had lots of feelings listening to the ceremony/speeches and watching the whole thing. I think love is a wonderful thing. Something to cherish greatly, and something to hold onto as best as possible when you can. I know it’s also hard work, to create happiness all the time and always feel grateful for everything you have. We take for granted so much all the time, I feel. And just the same, love is easily taken for granted. Whether it comes from our parents, from our friends, or our significant other, it’s easy to lose sight of how significant it is to have someone love you. Watching the wedding, it really made me consider my own personal values and personal goals for the future. I am definitely not ready to be married, but perhaps because of age or whatever it is, I know I’m looking forward to settling. Kids, however, that’s a completely different situation, one I am absolutely not ready to even consider. ANYWAYS!

Normally I would write a whole bunch more, but honestly I am realizing how much work I have to get done and I also lack much to say right now. So with that in mind, I end this very short post and update. I’ll try to give this more thought later. :D

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the return of karen?

Currently jammin’ to:

A long time ago (and by a long time, I mean a few years), I started this blog as a personal place for me to explore and express my own thoughts. Sometimes it was a reflection and representation of previous events that I had attended, sometimes it was conscious streams of opinions and observations I had created. Either way, I made it available to others to read, just in case for someone reason others found what I did or thought interesting, and mostly it served as a copy for me to remember and reflect on possibly later in life. You could say “online diary” but I would really just say an expression of myself and potential outlet of ideas. Probably only a year or less into creation, I ended up abandoning it in a sense. It wasn’t that I gave up on it, but it no longer became prioritized to me to write in. Part of it was simply from personal things occurring in my life, of which I did not want to share with the world (at least not on a public-stranger level anyways), and part of it was changes that occurred which resulted in me using laptops and computers less frequently (aka less likely to find random time to be posting a blog). I’ve never forgotten about my site, my blogging, and my initial inspiration for it, but perhaps my current inspiration is more dimmed and a slightly different flame now. I have thought about returning and updating again every so often, but never found the time or strong enough urge to proactively dedicate time daily or even weekly to collecting myself and putting myself out on the web again.

It has been over a year (two years?) since I last updated my blog (aka right now), and I still feel the slight uncertainty that I can commit to a frequent updating cycle, but my desire to do so, with similar reasons, is still very much alive. It is because of this, and mostly because I now have a bit more free time that I could actually utilize to updating on a regular basis, that I’ve decided to take up the mantle again. Sadly, I cannot guarantee how long my commitment will or won’t last, but try I still shall, even if I feel I have being doing very little in activities to write about.

So, now that I’m back, what do I say? Well I guess if I’m keeping my future self updated about my past self, the best place to start is what’s happening  in life for me now. Here’s a rambling summary:

I returned back to school. A real job just didn’t really do it for me; or more like, all the miscellaneous jobs I did were unfulfilling and lacked motivation outside of me making money. I like money, mostly because it lets me eat what I want and do things I like to do that costs money, but I don’t want to live to make money for a couple of vacations every few years. I, like possibly many in my generation, want a job that satisfies my own expressive self!… and makes money. Or what I really mean is that I want to do something that I actually enjoy and hope that it makes me enough to be satisfied with everything else. Considering the amount of time one normally spends in life working, I’d imagine if I’m happy working, I’ll probably be okay in life overall too. So I’m back in school studying to become a Speech-Language Pathologist. Where did this come? Mostly from trying to find more practical uses of my degree (or at least the studies involved in them) even though to actually do anything I need more studying (which I basically guessed would happen). Linguistics is an ever so interesting field. So are people. People’s perception and understanding are pretty nifty too. And then I want to help people understand better. So psychology wasn’t quite the exact route, but helping people talk or understand language better, well, that sounds a lot better. And thus, here I am, back at school. I decided to be financially smart (and also it’s a great school) and am attending the University of Texas at Austin now. The sad thing is that I’m still not quite at the level I need to be. I’m not completing a Master’s, I’m continuing studies in order to satisfy pre-requisite courses to apply for the Master’s program. Even worse, some colleges have different prerequisites. Tough. But I enjoy it, and I’m pleased to say I’ve had the best grades I’ve ever had in my college experience (guess I did finally learn how to study! or something). It’s a bit strange to be back on campus, especially with how much controversy there is on campus now a days I feel like (concealed carry coming to you Fall 2016!… what), and of course the age gap is a bit off putting, but I found a few friends who are in the same boat as me (the boat of “my original degree isn’t what I wanted or as useful as I hoped” or something) and we keep each other feeling good, I think. So current status: student, unemployed, and broke. Oh how times have changed… Not.

As for things outside of school (which isn’t much, sadly), I am happily in a committed relationship that seems more promising than any previous. I don’t know if that’s just the relationship talking, or the age influencing that emotion too (I mean, I would prefer not to be an old maid), but regardless I am happily involved in a semi-long distance relationship with a Mexican. Who would’ve guessed. Let’s just say I like throw my parents off all the time apparently. If you’re reading this dear, love you! :D <3 Officially five months in (it’s much shorter than it feels) and going strong.

I had some other stuff written last week for this, but I decided to cut it all out. If this is my return, I want it to be light, an updating summary, and then grow back in to whatever I hope it to be (I have no idea). If you’re still reading and following me, then awesome! I hope I’m entertaining to you or that you find comfort in anything I say. If not, well hope you have a good day. I like positivity, I can take criticism, but I will not accept negative comments that aren’t constructive to the conversation. There are times that I may express myself politically or just in my own opinion (well, that’s probably all the time since this is MY blog), and perhaps you do or do not agree. I won’t reject any comment just because it isn’t the same opinion as mine, but if I do think it is inappropriate or not constructive to the conversation, then I may reject the comment. Just an FYI.

I don’t have any sort of philosophical or take away message from any of this except to say I’m back. I’m back to try and regularly express myself to an unknown (and partially known) audience of people who feel like reading my thoughts. They aren’t expertly crafted, they sometimes run on and are grammatically incorrect (I’m sure), and they probably will be quite random or make no sense at all, but if it ever provides you comfort, or gives you inspiration, then I’m glad.

Hope you have a good day.

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