Starting a PhD Program: Or, Why I Can’t Stop Crying

Life is oh so big, awe-full and awful, but remains so, so small.

The angled, late morning sunlight hits one small square on the wooden floor. It slowly extends its reach with dappled warmth.

A miniature naval ship sits above a working fireplace; evidence strewn in ashes on the otherwise immaculate wood floor. There are paintings of ships everywhere.

You would’ve been 30.

And I’m on another new adventure. One that right now makes me feel small, inconsequential, struggling. One where I would love to hear you say: it’s not everything. Let’s get a drink.

I feel so much pressure, and I hope, I know, you are exquisitely free.

The crutch of self-doubt is one I know you would kick out from under my shoulder, and tell me to be big – but also remember that I am small.

That small is precious and good and kind and beautiful. That big is laughter and love and amazing and mystery.

That somehow, somewhere, sometime I might find myself.

Through the sea of words, and jargon, and ego, and fight.

But the not knowing is scary.

The risk feels perilous, the task daunting.

The tug, the pull, the questions remain.

A portly, formally attired man gazes out of his oil portrait, immense gilded frame and all, looking somewhat compassionate.

Perhaps he loves these boat paintings, or perhaps I just need the things in my world today to speak to me of love.

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Flagstaff Lake, ME

I held this piece for a while. A piece of my new home, a piece of Kristin, a piece of Marie Howe. Love more, y’all.

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One More Time With Feeling

Oh. Hey. Well. This is awkward.

I haven’t seen you around.

Yea I know I didn’t answer your call. Or your text. Or your email. Since April. I mean, I thought about it? Does that count?

I’m here now?

Lovers, bloggers, countrypeople. I’m back. [maybe, not really, I hope so, DON’T PRESSURE ME]

The mania of being up against mid-terms in my first semester of my PhD is the perfect time to get back on the blog train, right? Right?

Well, you can’t stop me.

Or take my mid-day gin drink from me. (I don’t want to hear your comments, or I am going to call you and read Aquinas at you. In Latin. Note: I don’t speak Latin. Then you can cast aspersions upon my chosen drinking times).

Also, I’m thinking about getting a cat and a dog. To be friends. And make millions off of Instagram fame (seriously do y’all follow Tuna? Or Yogurt? This is my retirement plan).

Wait. Back. Back on track! So, as you may have noticed I did a big overhaul; catalogued all Manresa posts with the ManresaMaine tag – and we’re going to start fresh(ish). In this fun format you can click on those fun black boxes in the upper left and right corners to see navigation options around the site.

The last six months has been constant change: we moved to southern coastal Maine (Brunswick), P got a new job, we moved apartments in the same town, we went to Oregon, I started my PhD, and now commute down to Boston a couple times a week.

All of this is a tad crazy-making and I miss writing silliness as my outlet from christology (which, P still thinks is the new-age study of crystals and their mystical power).

So, as my new bestie Andre would say (we hung out in a rooftop bar in STL after my godmothers’ gay barn wedding, obvs): So fresh. So fresh and so clean, clean.

Here we go!

Just sharing some gin and midnight thoughts.

Just sharing some gin and midnight thoughts.