Monday, October 31, 2011

On the brink... but of what?

I think the most difficult part of the semester is the final stretch.  Tomorrow is the first day of November, a realization on my part that offers both comfort and a significant amount of anxiety.  Here we are already at the start of the holiday season and I don't quite know how all of this has crept up on me so quickly.  What happened?  The several trips I've taken home throughout the course of the semester so far have been a great help for me but I'm beginning to realize that what I'm lacking at this point of the school year in large part is motivation.  As much as I enjoy my classes and am excited by the course material, my drive to keep going has started to dissipate.  The reason for this disappearance I have yet to put my finger on exactly.

It's quite strange to think that I only have three semesters left of my undergraduate education.  What the future holds after graduation is so ill-defined that I find myself again falling into fits of worry.  I want to pursue graduate studies in Spanish literature but I'm afraid that I don't have what it takes to continue on.  I've been looking into the graduate programs at Stanford, UCLA, UC Berkeley and UC Davis, and I can see quite clearly that I have my work cut out for me.  The applications alone for these programs require that I do well on the GRE exam, demonstrate fluency in the Spanish language, acquire letters of recommendation, write a statement of intent and submit at least two writing samples (one in English and one in Spanish), at least 20 pages each.  I will be submitting these applications a year from now.

One of my biggest struggles is taking things one day at a time.  I spend so much time worrying about the future that it often distracts me from the present.  I need prayers now more than ever for motivation, determination and focus.  In the past, I have very rarely had difficulty going after what I want and working hard to get there but now I find myself in many ways lost and confused, held back by nothing more than fear.  I need to pause and re-group, take a deep breath and ground myself.  My dreams are so close that I can grasp at them and I don't want to let them float away simply because I'm afraid I won't succeed.  I need to keep telling myself that I can do this and that as long as I try my hardest, everything will fall into place.  By the grace of God, I will end up wherever it is that I belong.

"Do not grow slack in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord."
(Romans 12:11)

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