Year two of my MFA has begun and this is how I have been describing it: Year One was like learning to plan a lovely vacation. Year Two is like learning to build your own airplane. From scratch. With your bare hands.
Only two weeks in and I am already mildly overwhelmed with the amount and complexity of homework.
The irony, of course, is that I don’t really have time to write but I suppose that is often the case when we’re learning a new skill set, that it takes time before we’re really able to apply our newly acquired knowledge.
In any case, I am delighted to be learning. And if learning new things delays the onset of mental decline, then I should be set for a few more decades. If anything, the problem will be my brain simply breaking from overuse, but I’m not quite there yet.
Where I am, specifically, is in Southampton where I am living during the week this semester. I have taken a dorm room and am actually living on campus half-time, although admittedly going home on weekends.
I suspect the other women on my floor are secretly wondering, “Who is that old lady?” or “Is she some sort of Den Mom Spy that nobody told us about?” If they are thinking it (and I know I would be if I was their age and a 51-year-old showed up in my dorm) they are polite enough to keep it to themselves. More likely, however, is that they are also slightly overwhelmed with the new semester and are actually not even thinking about me at all but just about their own school work.
It is wonderful to be out here where the only traffic I encounter is ducks crossing the foot path or the occasional deer watching me from across campus. The quiet is an invaluable gift as I try to wrap my mind around everything I’m learning. With luck I’ll manage it all and even find time to write more.
Fingers crossed and pencils sharpened!