Chris is visiting me for the first time in a while, and so much has gone on since my last blog post. Life is fluid, it's constantly changing, and healthy people change with it.
Since my last post I've applied for/ interviewed for a job in State College to start taking steps in my career as well as get closer to Chris. I've applied to a few jobs around here as well, and today I scheduled training for an outpatient therapy job in North Philly. Sometimes I feel like there aren't very many options for me in my field right now, other times I feel like there are too many choices. I'm constantly reminded of the studies that show how people with more choices have higher rates of depression and anxiety, and I relate. While deciding on my next step I have a lot of anxiety about making the right decisions not just for myself, but for everyone involved. I want to make the choices that will benefit my family (both the one I was born into and the one I'm working on creating), my clients, my career, my bank account, my education, and the parts of the world that I touch. It's a lot to take in and a lot to consider when making decisions such as where to work and where to live. My conclusion so far? Apply anywhere I find interesting and when offers come in compare and contrast them and take what looks the best. The thing about it is that I'm apparently rather marketable... a 23 year old master of psychology is something that people seem to interested in.
While I've been making these decisions Chris has been away in State College, studying and having fun. Our decision to have him got there was a tough one, but what he didn't know until recently is that I pretty much made the decision for him. Since his move here he's seemed like he missed his college life, complaining often about not being able to be with his friends and talking about how cool he thought State College was. I don't necessarily feel the same way and have even felt like I would rather be anywhere but there at points. With all of this I decided to push him to go back. I felt like this would give him the opportunity to return to his ideal college world with his friends... and without his fiance. He could spend some time independent of me and the responsibilities that come with a serious relationship (while maintaining fidelity, of course). He could play in the world that I feel like I grew out of a while ago and figure some things out, grow up and out of it, and figure out what exactly it was about that place and those people that he missed so much. All in all, I'd say this has been a successful venture, even though we've missed each other quite a bit.
Now that Chris has nearly had his fill of frat boy type college behavior and realized what he finds to be truly important he seems ready to come back here for multiple reasons. The irony of the situation is that while I've been finding a career path close to State College, he's found one close to me. It's quite a Gift of the Magi situation. At this point he's adopted my philosophy of pursing interesting opportunities and waiting until offers come in. Once we've got some things on the table we hope to be able to be back together and back to building our future again.
Another decision that has come up is that I've decided I will be making application to doctoral programs. I'm ready for the next step in my education, and I haven't given up on the idea of being Dr. Danielle. I know I can do it, I'm certainly good enough, and it is what I want in the long term. Lucky for my I've got an amazing support system to stand behind me and help me achieve my dreams. Between my family, Chris, and the few awesome friends that I have I know that I've got enough people to help me, guide me, and support me through any decision I make. So, ladies and gentleman, if you have suggestions of a doctoral program I should look into feel free to share. I've only got 3 that I know I'm applying to and I'd like to bump that number up to 6.
In mundane news, my baby sister is coming home for spring break next week so I'm super pumped. It's always nice when our little family can be together. I'm looking at new cars because mine is 12 years old and I don't think that it would hurt to have a more grown up car, what with me being a grown up now and all that. Chris and I still have no date for the wedding, which I really appreciate. I don't think I could handle the stress of wedding planning right now and it's comforting to know that the man who asked me to marry him isn't pushing me to find the time to actually do it either. It's nice to have someone who is on the same page with you, regardless of where that page is in the book.
I try to recognize just how lucky I am on a regular basis. I am blessed with so many things others don't necessarily have. Some of these things have been dropped into my lap by good fortune, others came about from a lot of hard work and determination. Either way, I am one lucky girl. There is no question about that.