I’ve noticed a pattern with my blogging. When I’m deep in the throes of school, I’m mostly MIA on this space. My brain becomes so convoluted with information I don’t ever plan to use that any and all creative juices are sucked up through a straw with a hole the size of Alaska. That makes for quick loss of creative juice.
The good news is, I am down to my last class. Like…the last one…ever. I really never wanted to go to college, and to be honest with you I don’t know if I’ll ever want a job that requires a college degree, but I finally settled on a BS in human communication. We all have to communicate, regardless of what we do for work.
Plus, Starbucks is footing the bill and I couldn’t really turn down a free bachelors degree. If you have an end goal I think college is great, but if you don’t, I think it can be a death trap for years of financial burden.
I’m a big believer that college isn’t for everyone, but I’m glad it’s finally almost over. I’ll never have that “I wonder if” problem about finishing, but the only reason I started was because I felt like my parents wanted me to. I have to admit this was the worst possible time for me to finish college and the amount of stress I felt from my classes as well as from managing my health literally had me on the floor in a ball more times than not.
Thankfully I’m a stubborn individual, and I refuse to take “this is your life now” for an answer. This is mostly the case for my autoimmune issues, which I don’t talk about much on the blog, but the thoughts of my body take up a large majority of my brain space. The sad reality is that most people think once they’re labeled as having an autoimmune disease, or any disease for that matter, they assume that’s it.
They assume this is life now, bring on the cocktail of drugs to manage this new life.
I don’t believe that, not for one second, no matter how many doctors seem to believe this. I believe autoimmune diseases are caused by excess inflammation in the body, for such extended periods of time that the immune system can no longer keep up in trying to put out the inflammatory flames. The goal is to find the source of this inflammation, whether it’s food, stress, toxins, parasites, or a combination of multiple things, and remove the triggers.
I’m thankful for my stubborn mind because it will allow me to gain my health back in full one day, of this I’m certain. It’s not an easy road, but it’s a road that will be worth the effort (just like these snowy hike photos from my birthday last month.) I used to be notorious for quitting when things got hard, which is why it’s taken me 11 years since I graduated high school to finally graduate college, but this time I didn’t quit. I wanted to quit many times, because I don’t handle my stress well. I switched my major four times, and regret nothing.
I’m certain stress was one of my main triggers for pushing my body over the edge, but patience is my best friend in calming the inflammatory fires.
I refuse to quit the path of naturally healing my body through lifestyle changes, and it’s powerful knowing I have control over my outcome. I can taste the freedom that accompanies no longer having to read another textbook on a topic I have no interest in. I have a good sense of when to quit something because it’s no longer serving me, and when to quit something because I’m letting stress take over. It’s important for me to know the difference.
I can also taste the freedom that comes from no longer handcrafting espresso beverages at Starbucks. I have two months left with Starbucks before I move onto my next adventure, and it’s a bittersweet goodbye. Five years ago I started slaving for the siren with no goal other than to busy my days and busy my mind after a painfully ugly breakup. Starbucks quite literally saved me when I needed saving, and because of that I will always have a soft spot for this chapter in my life.
Plus, the solid 401K and free bachelors degree they’ve given me aren’t so bad either.
From retail, to corporate, and back to retail I can confidently say my time with Starbucks has come to an end. I’ve become both comfortable and stagnant with where I’m at in life which means it’s time for a change. The stress that accompanies a job like mine is stress I can no longer afford to tax my body with. Although I’m sad to say goodbye I’m also ready to spread my wings and fly.
One of the few classes I enjoyed taking during my time with ASU was an elective class (aren’t those the only ones most of us enjoy?) called Wilderness and Parks in America. I learned a great deal about the history of our national parks, and developed a desire to see as many as possible, including the first ever national park – Yellowstone.
SO, I snagged a summer job at Yellowstone this May-October.
I’ve never been to Yellowstone, nor any of the states that Yellowstone resides in (the majority of the part resides in Wyoming, but 3% of the park is in Montana and 1% is in Idaho.) After my recent trip to Alaska I fell in love with the idea of seasonal work in locations that allowed me to live a lifestyle I enjoy, and to be outdoors exploring as often as possible.
I’m both excited and apprehensive about this adventure. My safety zone (my kitchen) will not be available to me, and I will have to learn how to navigate eating foods outside of my small circle of what is and is not helpful to my body. I’m confident that being in a new environment with new friends, and new hiking trails will continue to project me forward.
I’m already daydreaming about all the people I will meet, both coworkers and visitors of the park.
It’s no secret I’m a bit of a nomad, being in one place makes me feel stuck and weighed down, so this concept of seasonal work is something I’m chasing after right now. I don’t know what’s next after Yellowstone, and yet ironically this upcoming adventure has brought me more peace than I ever felt working a steady job the last five years.
Not everyone is made for the 9-5 lifestyle and that’s OK. What’s not OK is waking up each morning and dreading the day ahead of you. This life is a gift and we only get one, so we might as well live it doing things we enjoy. Thankfully I’m a simple girl, with a simple lifestyle, and I can afford to run off to different states living the life I manifest for myself.
Our bodies talk to us in many ways, and mine has been telling me it’s time for a change for a while now. The next two months I will continue to seek out my triggers for inflammation, continue to work through my stress, and finish college strong. Two weeks after I graduate I head to Yellowstone, and one week after Yellowstone I head to Scotland.
Only we can create a life worth living for ourselves. It’s going to be a good year. Onward.
Q: Tell me about your educational path, and what you do for work.