One year and half a world away

This is where I was, one year ago today:

I took this photo on a walk along the Bund in Shanghai.

I’m finding it hard to believe that another whole year has gone by. I feel like I have very little to show for it. A year ago today, I presented my research at a prestigious international conference. (Here I am, giving my talk. I even won an award.) Two days earlier I had walked along a stretch of the Great Wall near Beijing, one of the most awe-inspiring experiences of my life.

Two days ago, I barely left my house. The past year has been a blur of holidays and birthdays, laundry and grocery shopping, illness and death, laundry and grocery shopping, celebrations and family visits, and more laundry and grocery shopping. I know that I have been working and busy, but once again I feel like I don’t have enough to show for it. I’m really not even sure what my point was other than…damn. A whole ‘nother year. And I haven’t even posted my trip photos!

10 thoughts on “One year and half a world away

  1. I get that stuck feeling from time-to-time. [Well, more often than that if I’m being truthful.] I need to do so many small things to be able to make space for the big things (in both literal and metaphorical senses) that my goals get lost in the shuffle.

    Hang in there! Maybe by this time next year you will be ruling the world & we’ll all be calling you Queen Alejna, Mistress of the Universe. ;-)

    1. Thanks, Ally Bean. Nice to know you understand. And thanks for the entertaining thought of me being Mistress of the Universe! Must make some more headway with my plans for world domination. Maybe if I can get a nap in…

  2. Hi Alejna —

    I feel for you. I have been there as a grad student — and I didn’t even have a husband and kids to additionally have to think about, care for, etc.! You probably don’t want to hear this — but I honestly feel like my life started moving again/in earnest after I left grad school!

    1. Ah, yes, it’s probably good for me to hear it, YTSL. I will be leaving grad school sooner rather than later, one way or another. (Some days I think one way, some days I think the other.) It does actually encourage me to know that my stuck feelings have much to do with my grad school situation. And you certainly have moved along well since you escaped your own grad school trap!

  3. You wear a lot of hats. It is tiring, frustrating, confusing. But when you look back on it, years from now, I predict you will feel proud of all you handled and how well it has all turned out.
    That’s how this wife/mother/professional felt, anyway.

    1. Thanks, Mary. There are a lot of hats. Some days I can look at things and feel like I deserve a medal for just getting through. ( days I revoke that medal for not having done more.)

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