#GradSchoolDropIn

The Confessions of A Tired, Black Graduate Student

I was halfway through forcing myself to read a 20-page article for class when I began to write my paper over what I understood from the piece. There I was, going against the typical Olivia nature, trying to knock out an assignment two weeks before it was due, and yet I still could not find the inspiration I needed to spit out something worth reading. When I finally picked apart what I wanted to talk about, I let out one big sigh, and somehow, my quest to tackle the assignment turned into this frustrated post.

At first, this whole school thing was fun, but that only lasted for about 3 months. I am starting to believe that my lack of honesty, or candidness rather, is crippling my graduate career, so how about I just let it rip for once, huh? Alright, here we go.

I start afresh every quarter with a plan to be studious, responsible, and diligent with all of my assignments, and I fall short each and every time. I can never get my books in a timely fashion because, frankly, I’d rather spend $300 on something that interest me or provides my way of living in Los Angeles. I can’t eat the pages if I get hungry. Chalk it up to an incongruent priority list if you will, but I say, I’m just sort of–over it–at this point. I can’t even open these books. Given all that I know about the overwhelming evidence of Africa being the mecca of all the sciences (psychology, too) I ‘on’t wanna hear no mess about about Freud and his “discoveries.” I remember venting to my mentor, saying, “If I have to write another paper asking me to do a Freudian analysis of my childhood, I am going to blow my fuckin’ lid.” College, (the whole education system, hell) which mostly holds white supremacist standards, serves that perspective, and gives no guarantee of a “well-paying” career is simply another business trying to make a profit. Moreover, I’ve come to the conclusion that they’re all just feeding us the same bullshit. I am completely over it. Completely over having to fake my interest on class forums with terms like “fascinating” and “I find that intriguing”. I am so over professors demanding me to finish full books in less than a week when I can’t even finish 4x4in painting in a day. I’m tired of others expecting me to be the spokesperson for the Black struggle when the topic of racism comes up in a class of all white peers. I am completely and utterly over the bombardment of assignments, and completely over having to force myself to align to bullshit theories and methods.

I recall a 12-year-old Nneka,  who was totally against going to college while all of her peers bragged about institutes and universities of which they wanted to attend. Oh no, not Nneka. She knew she had all the chops to build everything she desired in life without a $45,000 piece of paper. I wanted a piece of that girl back, so I shook the sleeping firecracker out of her sleep. It felt good to have that child in my corner again, because she knew who the hell she was without a shadow of a doubt. I think we could all use some child-like confidence if you ask me. Children are so much more purer in thought and self awareness than adults, because they’re honest. They are totally unfiltered; when they’re happy, they show it. When they’re sad, they let it be known. When they don’t like the idea of something, they will tell you, despite how you feel about it. They jump for joy when they are excited and dance like nobody’s watching because they don’t give a damn what anyone says. They have no construct of societal standards until they grow up to become adults like us–slaving over low paying jobs they hate because it’s the “adult” thing to do or digging themselves into thousands of dollars worth of debt because they believe a Master’s or Doctorate will validate them. Who said a piece of paper was the only way to get all the wealth and comfortable living imaginable? Who told me I needed a degree and a modest, professional knee-length dress to prove to others that I am knowledgeable of what I claim myself to be and worthy of their approval? I call bullshit.

Who knows, maybe I’ll look back and be grateful for my Master’s degree–I sure hope so, at least. Until then, I’ll be here, reading this stoic article and vomiting out the scattered thoughts of this assignment.

 

Peace.

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