Further Learning: A Post-School Journey of Education

I’ve never liked school. I mean, I liked some subjects, like English and art, but thought history was boring and wanted to bash my head in during math. But what I didn’t realize until after I was finished with school, was that I actually liked learning. I loved it. I just wasn’t learning what I wanted to, what I was interested in. I realized this during Art History while going to school for design. It was my favorite class. I’d always thought I hated history, but what I thought of as “history” was what we learned in high school — quite literally, the boring parts. I loved learning about architecture and art, what society was like hundreds of years ago in different countries, different cultures, and how they changed. I realized how much I actually liked to learn — and not just about history, but other subjects I was never taught.

So, I didn’t just want school to stop and learning about interesting stuff I liked to stop with it. After finishing college, I decided that I was going to keep learning about the things I was interested in. I made a list of all the subjects I had an interest in and wanted to learn more about.

I’ve always loved Greek Mythology (I had a semester-long class in middle school about it and fell in love) but have always wanted to learn more, I’ve been interested in language, religion, history, and a whole bunch of other topics.

Here’s a rough list:

  • Language
  • Greek Mythology
  • Ancient Rome
  • Egyptian Mythology + Ancient Egyptian History
  • Witches (Salem; European Witch hunts)
  • Monsters and Legends
  • Religious History
  • Modern Cults
  • Scandinavian History
  • Norse and Celtic Mythologies
  • British History
  • Symbolism and Iconography
  • History of Ancient China
  • The World Wars
  • Evolution
    PLUS A LOT MORE

I have set out a plan and have already started reading books on the subjects that I’m interested in. To start, I read one of my first non-fiction books, Penny Coleman’s Corpses, Coffins, and Crypts: A History of Burial — which was a fascinating read about how we’ve treated our dead in the past, how other cultures do, and how it has changed. Afterward and since, I’ve started with the topic of language. Linguistics and etymology have always been an interest of mine and I’ve been loving learning more about it. The schedule so far is continuing with Language for the rest of 2018 and early 2019, then start with Greek Mythology around mid-2019.

And, because I document a some of my life here on the blog, I decided I wanted to post more about my new journey. That’s the plan starting in 2019, a new series of posts documenting my journey: the books I read, articles, films, documentaries, etc. along with my thoughts, things I found interesting or learned, and a general overview of each subject. I’m very excited about this!

First, however, we have to get through the rest of 2018. This was just an introduction. I have a lot of posts about NaNoWriMo (it’s coming so soon!) and wrapping up the year before then. I’m hoping the first posts about Language will start in the beginning of 2019!

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The End of Part One

Recently, (as in a few days ago) I finished school. I completed all my classes and I’ll officially have a degree in graphic design. I’m both excited that it’s over and excited for the future and terrified that it’s over and terrified of the future.

I’ve always sort of had my plans up in the air and thought I’d figure it out eventually. Well, I did that, and I sort of figured out what I want to do (I mean, I know what my passions are and I know what my dreams are) but now that it’s here, right now, I feel like I’m not ready for it. But at the same time, I feel ready enough. It’s a weird limbo-like roller coaster ride of anxiety with a lot of pressure that makes me feel like I’m dying. But it’s totally fine, I’m fine, it’s fine.

But because of that pressure, I feel more focused. I’ve suddenly became aware of my surroundings and things—specifically that I lack a good set up to start doing anything. My work space is broken up into three different rooms and I’m in the process of planning to reorganize my life and work space (after the holidays, I’ll be actually moving and organizing—and I think I’ll post all about the setting up my new work space.) There’s also a lot of researching that needs to be done, some purchases I need to make (like possibly a new computer, some more storage, and definitely a new printer) which all has to happen as I need it and as I can afford it, but it a mostly all takes planning.

The end of school sort of feels like going off a cliff. You’ve been able to see the cliff the whole time as you were running toward it, but you’ve always seen it further away than it really was. And while running toward it, you were supposed build a plane along the way before you fell off. Well, I’m off the edge of the cliff with only half a plane. All the schematics are there, the plans to build the whole plane are there, I just have to finish the plane—as I’m going down. So that’s what I’ll be doing in the new year: building the plane before I hit the ground.

My plans/goals are this: the small business I co-run is expanding in January, so I’ll be working hard on that; I’ll be drastically reducing my involvement with my current job, sticking just to freelancing design work for them; I’ll be doing more freelance here and there when I can; and I’ll be working on my own art and design to hopefully start selling online, prints and stationery and other products. And of course I’ll be writing.

So there is a plan. There are goals. Planning and focusing and working is the only way it can happen. I just have to begin. The time to do it is right now—and I think I’m ready.