Well, it's been a while, hasn't it? This whole grad school thing has kept me just the tiniest bit busy. Who knew?! But after finishing my master's thesis in May (my family spent all of graduation weekend calling me "master" and finding themselves HILARIOUS), I get the whole month of June "off" before a long Engineers Without Borders trip and then the beginning of the PhD.
I say "off" because mostly it just means I'm not getting paid for any of the work I'm doing, most of which has to do with EWB. But I have claimed some time for myself - time to go hiking in the Texas summer heat (though it's only June, it will get worse), time to enjoy visiting friends and family, time for multiple failed baking experiments (baking with no sugar or sugar substitute is really not a recipe for success), time to read The Internet... it's really quite lovely, actually, and I may never be able to work quite as hard again now that I've remembered what it's like to have TIME.
Today in my reading of The Internet I encountered one of my favorite bloggers documenting her younger daughter's lead-up to turning 4 (http://dooce.com/2013/06/17/newsletter-marlo-turns-four/). Reading about this crazy little person, this "expression of eternal joy," made me think of me at around that age. There are photos of me about which I've said "I'm so happy I almost look angry," and "I'm so full of joy I'm about to explode." I can remember being that age or a little older and just being filled with bliss. I miss that age, and I'm trying to recapture as much of that feeling as I can.
I guess the best part is that, especially this month with time to spend on myself, I AM recapturing it, just a little. I went tubing on the Comal River with a good friend this weekend, and by the time we were halfway down the first "tube chute" (a waterslide built into the river), I was laughing one of those belly-guffaws you couldn't stop if you tried. It was absolutely wonderful. I hope that as I dive back into grad school research I can keep finding moments when I can be gloriously 4 again.