It took me exactly three years to finish my Master’s degree and arrive at graduation.
The day I graduated with my Master’s in English–Technical Writing was the first day I ever set foot on the Northern Arizona University campus.
Flagstaff is stunning. Truly. You quickly pass from the desert into mountains which seem to pull you into an embrace and exhibit indescribable beauty.
The air filtered through my hair; you know, the hair that I had woken up at 6:15 AM to craft, so that I could look flawless walking across the NAU Thunder Dome stage (by the way, that’s quite a name for a small school, but it sure made me feel important).
If you’ve ever done something extraordinarily hard, you know that everything difficult in your life is often related back to the other hard things.
In the months that have passed since the day of graduation, I consistently have to remind myself that I did it. I honestly did walk across that stage.
The wind was strong, and so were my spirits. I felt great joy in having my family with me, and between Sedona and Flagstaff, I knew that the beauty of the moment and of the relationships that surrounded me would be those that would last more than a lifetime.
I went back and forth on whether or not my family should make the drive from Orange County to Flagstaff, but I’ll never, ever regret going–even if it was for just the ceremony.
Why You need a degree
Because, here is the thing:
Getting any degree is worth celebrating. I know a lot of people refer to degrees as “stupid pieces of paper.” However, I know firsthand that they are not.
I finished something that many people don’t. I completed a Bachelor’s degree, and I finished a Master’s degree.
That says something.
And that sure as hell means something to my employers.
A degree tells others that you dared to do something extremely difficult, finished that task, and grew from it.
Yes, that piece of paper won’t show the tears I cried, the papers I wrote, or the struggles I faced, but it does represent them.
My diploma represented my diligence, perseverance, self-confidence, and sacrifice all rolled into–you betcha–a piece of paper, and I am far stronger than I was when I began.
I am a tenacious and graceful woman willing to work hard and see something through.
And I am proud of that.
I do believe that I’m a kick*ss mom.
I started this MA before I was pregnant, worked through it while I was pregnant, and then took two years of my son’s life to finish it.
I’m stronger because of it.
So, no, that diploma isn’t stupid. And it’s just not another hoop to jump through. Education is worth so much more than that, and I’ll never falter on that opinion.
Graduation, you sure were perfect.
With tenacity and grace,