Self Deprecation and Having it All
Rather See Me Die than See Me Fly
Fame is Like a Drug
A Generation of Carries
In 2012, I graduated with my B.S. in Chemistry and a B.Eng. in Chemical Engineering and let go of my long time dream to go to law school in favor of working as a control systems engineer for an awesome company. As most of my peers, I went through a long period of time when I was unsure of what I wanted to do. Choosing what to do for the rest of your life when you're 18 is not only daunting, it's insane!
For whatever reason, divine intervention perhaps, I picked this dual degree 5 year program at orientation. My freshman year was marked by a tremendous personal loss, and then my sophomore and junior and "year off" years were marked by an incredible degree on non-functioning. I touch on this, my "dark ages", at a few points in the blog because this was a very important time in me becoming who I am.
Before this time I was every bit a self-centered teenager more into Facebook friends than grades but by the end of it I had gained empathy and insight and I felt a newfound passion about academics and what I was studying. From then on I was a mostly straight-A student (cut me some slack, I was in engineering classes after all) who spent long weekends in the library and cared deeply not only about learning but about my fellow humans.
But back to how I ended up here - doing group projects with my fellow engineering majors helped me realize that my writing was definitely a strong point compared to my peers, so I thought that perhaps law school would lead me to a career where I could really utilize all of my skills to excel but then 2008 happened to the economy and everyone went to law school to avoid life and I actually landed a pretty fucking awesome job and, although I still might reassess that dream at another time, let go of that to do this. Most of my job is programming and writing logic for plant automation systems so I don't really get much practice writing. As I start preparing for the GRE, I thought maybe a blog would help me hone my writing skills so I don't go in cold turkey and also give me a place to write my thoughts out and go over them at another time.
I signed up to be a mentor with the Huffington Post's "Girls in STEM" program until I realized that their message wasn't really the one I wanted to pass along. That isn't to say I don't support girls in STEM because I most definitely do, but as an actual girl in STEM I feel like I see the issues with women in my generation breaking out into these fields more clearly than those who are viewing from the outside. I think they are doing noble work in encouraging girls to get into these fields but I also think they're being exclusive in some ways and alienating the girls who maybe don't have that specific interest or don't just fit the "geek girl" persona perfectly. I thought that maybe this blog could help some girls out who find themselves having difficulty figuring out who they are and what they want to do and navigating a male-dominated field as well as help me figure out my own thoughts about my situation and the kind of feminism I hope to endorse and bring to those I come into contact with.
Rather than just focus on my clothes or my baking or my lifestyle, I hope to also raise some questions that go a little deeper than "Is it okay to wear black and navy together?" (not that that isn't a legitimate question, and for the record the answer is a resounding YES). I want people who read this to be reminded that my women of my generation aren't just a slew of pictures of outfits scattered across the internet, or a hashtag-girlcrush page on Instagram littered with selfies taken from the same angle to show and enhance cleavage, or even a marketing demographic to sell yogurt to. We are people, we have agency, we think and we feel deeply, and we even, hopefully, participate in getting what we want out of life. Maybe that's an objective much too large for a silly blog to ever be able to accomplish, but I'll never know unless I try, and I hope that some young girl somewhere finds this and realizes she can be who she is and doesn't need to fit into a narrow stereotype; she can wear makeup and read science journals and not have to deal with people asking her, "Oh, so are you a secretary there?" when she mentions her place of work. Because no, she's fucking not.
Thank you for stopping by and I'm sorry for being long winded but I hope you follow me along on my journey!