Take the rough ground: fighting the system – finding my own way (journal writing 2013 on starting University)

Copyright 2015 Kay/wavesandpebbles

Copyright 2015 Kay/wavesandpebbles

 

The following is a piece of journal writing that I found while sorting out papers from my first year at University.  I really did get myself into a bit of a state over how much reading I thought I needed to do and it was beginning to become something that would stop me enjoying what to me was a dream come true to be at University.  Sometimes we need to just step back and reflect on our feelings about things that are troubling us and get them in perspective.  I also discovered there’s a lot of support out there for students.

I have lots of happy memories from my first year at University in 2013/14 as a mature student.  The photo was taken on holiday in Devon, England during a wonderful walk on Dartmoor when we met up with these beautiful Dartmoor ponies.

 

‘FIGHTING AGAINST THE SYSTEM – FINDING MY WAY
Tuesday, 1 October 2013
Last week was walking on air, this week anxiety has crept in. I’m here to learn. I knew there would be lots of books. But I can’t read! Well, I can read – I know my abc – but I can’t read lots and recall. Yesterday got really stressed when I looked at the never-ending book lists that seemed to go on forever. And I have to read them all! It’s important! Of course I have to read them all – except the small number of optional – elst why would they be optional? I can feel myself dipping, lurching, wilting. And it’s only day 1 of week 1. Tasters and freshers over. This is reality. But I love to learn. It’s enthralling, exciting, inspiring. Yet how do I learn if I can’t read the books??

Today, my answer is, by being me. I’ve lived long enough and delved deep enough to know that I learn and create in unique ways. Probably that’s the key word, create. I am creative in mind. Is it no wonder that I can’t follow systems to the letter? Routine is dull, orders are dull. I need colour, variety, flexibility, spontaneity, adventure. I need to go wherever I feel in the moment. Even I know that’s not reality and I soon swing in with all the rest. Yet when the freedom to learn becomes rigidly fixed in my mind, that’s when I have to find my own way. I have the passion, commitment, desire, inquiring mind, ambition to follow through with my path in my own way. I just need to give myself permission in this world of self-study, self-responsibility, self-organisation to follow the path less travelled – in fact to take the rough ground whenever I feel as sometimes the most magnificent scenes come into our lives when we trust in life and our ability to survive and grow.’

River of Gold – poem on graduation

Copyright 2013 Kinshuk Kashyap, Flickr, CC-BY, via Wylio

Copyright 2013 Kinshuk Kashyap, Flickr, CC-BY, via Wylio

I wrote this poem on the train en route to my son’s graduation back in 2011.

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RIVER OF GOLD

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A droplet in the ocean

no different than the rest

The world is filled with motion

yet there seems no special quest

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There’s such a special journey

for one that is so small

A ripple, one of many

some are heading for a fall

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Life gives them such a blessing

with gifts for all to seek

Within is where they’re hiding

and the secret is to peek

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Search for true hidden talents

the playful ones count too

Don’t let them say it’s nonsense

deep inside you have the cue

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To learn the many reasons

for this and that and how

Till knowledge is the river

leads to taking such a bow

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The prize is yours forever

to take you far and wide

The river it is golden

rippling ever more with pride