Ich habe die Qual der Wahl

There is a phrase in German, I absolutely love, “Ich habe die Qual der Wahl” it would somewhat equate to “I am being tortured by the choices I have”.

I am very thankful that I have two great opportunities one professionally and one personally but Ich habe die Qual der Wahl. I am unsure which to choose, and I must choose as they are happening on the same date. I have the opportunity to travel to South Carolina and compete in triathlon at the USAT Collegiate Nationals with the OSU team, which I have never done before and may never have the opportunity to do so again. I also have the opportunity to create a summer program for Latino high school students on heritage language development in the medical fields that will give these students access to college credit and exposure to a university campus, and as part of this program am being invited by my department, expenses paid, to the “Midwest Heritage Language Summit: Fostering the Languages of Your Community” conference in Michigan.
Both the triathlon and conference are on Saturday, April 23rd—Ich habe die Qual der Wahl. Yesterday, after talking to my friend I had decided I didn’t want to die having missed out on the opportunity to go to nationals but I am totally okay dying and not having made it to another academic conference. Then today, after talking to my academic mentor I felt I should go to the conference. The conference will have direct impact on the work I want to do not just in the next 3 months but the next ten years.
I am trying very hard to be thankful that I have both professional and personal opportunities but this decision is torture.

Dear Dudes

Dear Dudes,

I write this because I like dudes and I want to keep liking dudes. Stop sending dick pics. I don’t know of any women (I am sure they exist) who upon receiving a picture of some dude’s genitalia think “Yes, please, I want that. Oh put it in me”. If you want me specifically to like you, or to at least engage with you and respond positively, try instead sending me a book, an intriguing journal article, an interesting blog post, a new song, something that makes me think. Please, stimulate my brain and I will be way happier than I ever could with a picture of your man bits.

-Elena Mary

PS I tend to think that like physical contact, sexting requires consent—get some permission before you start messaging.

Good Sunday

This morning I participated in The Broke Man’s Half Marathon with Sandra. We signed up for the 1/2 Marathon but because of missing a turn we only ran 10 miles—which I was happy for because that meant I could make it on time to brunch with lovely ladies of color from graduate school—none in my program.  I ordered two breakfasts and a bloody mary because yes.  Went home constructed some furniture for a neighbor.  Then headed to an hour and a half relaxation yoga class with Neil.  It was a good, wonderful, Sunday to be concluded with some reading of Memorias de Mamá Blanca.

Why I have to succeed

I’m not sure succeed is the word…as more so persevere. I have to persevere through graduate school.  I am enjoying it but it is sometimes frustrating, difficult, structured in ways I have difficulties understanding and navigating.

My friend 光  visited me the past few days and I was tempted to skip class (something I don’t do—seriously I went the first four years of undergrad never missing a class) so I could spend the day with him.  But he reminded me of this:

“Out of 100 Chicano/a elementary school students, 44 will graduate from high school, 26 will enroll in either a community college or four-year university, but only 7 will graduate with a bachelors degree; only 2 will complete a professional or graduate degree and 0.2 will earn a doctorate.
…At full professor level, Latinas made up 1,254 of those positions…and white women held almost 40,000 full professorships.”

(Chronicle of Higher Education Almanac, 2009 )

And yes, he did remind me of those exact numbers as we read from “ ‘I don’t belong here’: Chicanas/Latinas at a Hispanic serving Institution Creating Community Through Muxerista Mentoring“.  He scolded me “If ya don’t go you are going to fuck up the statistics, it is vital you go”.
If I don’t go class, my chances of becoming that 0.2 that earn a doctorate is threatened.  I have already defied some odds; I am the first woman on either side of my family to graduate high school (first person–male or female– on my mom’s side), I am the first person on either side of my family to graduate from university, I am the first in my family to attend graduate school…and damn it has been a long winding road.

I want to be part of that 0.2% of Latinas that earn a doctorate.  When 1 out 4 students in K-12 in this country is now Latino and yet they aren’t represented in academia, and I have the opportunity and privilege to be in that role, it isn’t just something I have to do for me, but for my community.  So, yeah I went to class and class was a lot of fun and super stimulating…now if I can just preserver for a few more years.

Goodbye 2015

2015 has been physically a rough year.

Started out the year with a bum knee and hip-flexor, after I hurt them on a late fall, early winter trail run half marathon.

In the Spring my knee and for the most part my hip-flexor better, I had to have surgery on my lady bits.  Threw my hormones for a loop, and knocked my whole body out.

Then in the fall had a serious concussion after Pancho Villa the dog head butted me. I lost consciousness, came to and couldn’t read or write, or balance myself.

I am feeling much better (other than this cold I currently have) and am really looking forward to athletically kicking ass in 2016.