Finally i'm on the second leg of my Masters program, after the first 6-8 months feeling like YEARS, I just have 5 months left. When I decided to stop thinking about going back to school and actually do it I was so sure i'd be perfectly capable of managing a full time job, classes, homework, papers, studying, social life, family, excercise etc etc - wrong! No one is perfectly capable of handling that much, that doesn't mean you shouldn't do it anyways.

As i've [frequently] thought about whether or not I am making the right choice, will a higher degree really give me the leg up I want, will I see monetary results, will the debt be worth it.... i've realized that the answer is entirely up to me, it is all in what I choose to do with it. The absolute smartest investment anyone can make is in themselves. Whether it be academically, personally, professionally, spiritually - making a decision for yourself, to better yourself, is important and necessary.

As a I tread towards the finish line of my program i've been reflecting on what the past 8-10 months have been like for me in general. I have seen the highest of highs, by believing in myself, joining corporate America (which I still like so far), working towards my MBA in Analytics, getting my own apartment, etc-- but I have also seen the lowest of lows, watching someone I love suffer so deeply, picking themselves up and falling back down time and time again. I've realized, that it's not the highs that have shaped me into who I am, it's the lows - it always has been. Watching a family member, let alone a parent, battling what seems like an endless and powerful disease is dibilitating yet gives you, as the affected family member, no choice but to be strong.

I’ve been thinking of the strength, resiliance and determination that lies within me and 9 out of 10 times I relate it back to the experiences I've faced since I was a child, these experiences have given me no choice but to be who I am today. I am determined because I have never in my life been handed anything, I have taught myself and been taught by others that nothing worth having comes easy nor does it come with sitting back in self pity. Working for everything you have brings on a sense of humility, I am genuine, understanding and compassionate because I have faced experiences that have molded these values into me. In the midst of it all I have never lost sight of what truly matters - me. The only thing i have full control of is my own life, decisions, actions, reactions. No matter what the circumstance is, I have no choice but to proceed and continue to make decisions that will better my life and my being in any which way possible.

Absolutely anything is possible with strength, persistence & kindness! Taking care of yourself will bring on immeasurable results both short & long term.