April 29, 2013

.On the unknown.

I've talked before about my control issues.  I have always had a life plan.  A plan for my career, and a plan for my personal life.  And so far, life has fallen in line with that plan.  I know this is not all from my own accord, but I have spent a great deal of effort following the plan.

Well as of last Tuesday after my dissertation defense, my committee stated, "Congrats Dr. Tyler," and I realized that the plan was done.  And now, I'm faced with the unknown.  Getting my doctorate by 27 was it.  It always seemed so far; I never thought about the after.

So, what now?  What do I want the rest of my life to look like?  What are my goals for the next several decades?  What is important for me to spend my time doing?  Of course, focusing on my young family is a top priority.  And sure, there is the work that accompanies this degree.  But what about the rest of my identity in the coming years?  I was good at being a student, on pushing forward;  I fear stagnation and how it makes me feel.

But as I prepare for this new season, I'm looking forward to discovering a sense of calm in the stillness.
The fulfillment of living in the present, instead of moving from deadline to deadline.
What kind of hobbies will I take up?  What kind of activities will I enjoy?  G has only known me as an academic, and even he has questioned the person I will be now that it's over.

I am so excited to uncover this next mystery.  Because so far, life has been very calculated and designed. 

This start of something new is exhilarating.

P.S. Taken this weekend at 34 weeks.

April 22, 2013

.Our dessert party.

 Since we're having a darling little girl just two years younger than her sister, we decided to throw a dessert party en lieu of another baby shower.  Hosting our friends and family at the yogurt shoppe was stress-free and fun as we indulged in cake, frozen yogurt, cheesecake, fresh fruit, candy, and a paint station (which only the most adventurous dared try!).

What a fine way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

P.S. Hello 33 weeks!
P.P.S. Happy birthday brother!!

April 17, 2013

.the immediate horizon.

A few shots of some recent fun we've been having.  After a quick trip to Tennessee, we have important things on the immediate horizon like...

... a dessert party to celebrate littlest baby girl's very-soon arrival (like 6 weeks people!)
... my defense is next week!  Fits of crying and laughter ensue when I think too long about this.
... my little brother turns 21.  When did he grow up?

Pending good results next week, I'll be channeling my focus into mama-mode and really soaking up the quality time with my little family of three.  We have a lot to do before June!  And then there's lots of birthdays to be had (remember this one and this one?)!

April 8, 2013


So essentially my days have been looking something like: wake, work-work-work manically on the dissertation, break for family time, work-work-work panically, maybe a tiny break to spend time with G, work-work-work resentfully, then sleep and do-over the next day.  I have my job and a class to teach also somewhere in there too.  But when it's play time, I do try to put all my energy and focus into that because I'll never get this time back with these two even after graduation.  

Dylan's toddler-energy knows no bounds lately, and being nearly 8 months pregnant at this point, my body struggles to keep up.  But Dylan has also been more demanding of mama's time recently, refusing to nap or sleep on her own until I sit down for a minute and just hold her.  And although I feel frenzy because of the tight deadlines the next several weeks bring, I'm also grateful that this little girl knows when enough is enough and that I just need to stop and be with her.  Because no matter the degrees or career I end up having, I know I want these two (soon-to-be three) still with me along the way, self-assured in their significance in my life.

But thankfully, the end does seem to be near.  The entire body of work will get submitted today and goes to several for approval, and then, the defense.  After, I get to go back to focusing on being intentional with this life, instead of persevering these current days.  And despite the stress I feel, I have several people close in my life who are battling much more trying days, and I have to laugh at myself for the absurdity of my complaints.

What an opportunity and a challenge.