I’ve been meaning to share this post for quite some time. I’m actually not 100% certain about the exact format so bare with me. To give you a quick summary, in 2012, when I finished my bachelor’s degree in psychology I decided that I wanted to pursue graduate school. I figured that it was the perfect time since my then-fiancé was still finishing college, we were engaged but with no immediate wedding plans and I could continue to live at home (the second biggest blessing during those years, only after my (now) husband’s support). I applied and was accepted to a 5-year Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Psychology (Psy.D.) program. Like medical doctors, clinical psychologists apply directly to doctorate programs. We usually get our Master’s degree halfway when we finish X amount of credits and pass comprehensive exams.
Anyways, today I want to talk a little bit of how my husband and I have survived my doing/completing my doctorate. It certainly HASN’T been easy, we DID break up for like 13 hours one time as well, but, have we come out strong. 😉
Here’s a little list of how we survived:
- We talked wholeheartedly and honestly about our future plans.
- Were we committed enough to realize the sacrifices that graduate school would entail?
- How would our plans change?
- Pro/Con List
- Marriage and kids would have to wait.
- We were newly engaged and as much as we wanted to go and sign papers and move into an apartment, we agreed that waiting until I finished at least all of my classes would be the best choice. I began my PsyD in August 2012 finished my last courses December 2015, we got married March 2016 and now I will graduate October 2017.
- I’ve had many friends have babies during graduate school, it’s not impossible. But it does take more time and although I knew it was doable MY choice was to wait and finish my PsyD before we try for a little one. Trust me it isn’t easy seeing so many friends have their babies, but I know our time will come.
- Our routine would have to change.
- Dinner dates? Not when you’re in graduate school from 8am – 10pm. Hello breakfast dates! J would pick me up at my house around 6:45am, we’d have breakfast and then he’d take me to school.
- Weekend road trips? Ha! – Our weekends consisted of getting pre-made foods at a local gourmet shop (antipasto, cheese, preserves, pasa salads, etc.), J moving a huge table into his room for me to work from and we’d watch movies or TV series all day while I did my schoolwork.
- It was okay to have mixed feelings.
- I remember that time we broke up for like 13 hours (could’ve been less), J told me that he wasn’t used to me “not being there”. It was SO difficult to hear. I was in my first semester and sometimes my supervising interns would call me at 10:30pm to give me feedback on a treatment planner or something. I was basically ALWAYS doing something school related.
- After that day I realized that I needed to Prioritize, schoolwork was important but so was my relationship. I would do as much work as I could Monday-Saturday morning and the other day and a half I would disconnect from school. Even if that meant staying up late Sunday night when I got home from the movies.
- Many days I wanted to give it all up and just do nothing. But then I also remembered that if others before me had done it, why couldn’t I? It’s a rollercoaster of emotions….and that’s A-OK!
- Temporary sacrifice for a lifelong reward.
- The sleepless nights, breakfast dates, Advils and endless cups of coffee would one day come to an end. Well, maybe not the coffee, haha. But we reminded each other constantly that graduate school wasn’t forever.
- Now that I begin my internship it’ll be a big change but we realize that as difficult as it might be, it’s only for one year. Temporary sacrifice……lifelong reward of having the knowledge, tools and skills to help others.
I could spend hours talking about this subject but I think I’ll keep it as short and sweet as possible. However, if you have any questions or requests regarding this particular topic please let me know in the comments below or send me an e-mail. I realize that many couples out there could be going through this or maybe even considering grad school, (specially this day in age) and could be feeling overwhelmed.
I’d like to close off by saying that when Charles Dickens wrote “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times” he was probably completing a doctorate degree in clinical psychology, ha!
Thank you for stopping by.
This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own.