I've always been pretty bad at being a traditional student, but I've also always been pretty good at figuring stuff out on my own. For example my senior year in high school I found myself in a Calculus class that assumed I had learned Trigonometry. I hadn't but rather than drop the class I learned trig in a week (instead of a semester). Over the years I've gotten better at teaching myself things. Eventually I learned that my biggest barrier to success wasn't my abilities, but emotions. Without a syllabus its hard to know how well I'm progressing, or really have any clue how soon I will know the things I want to know. I have to be my own coach, and cheerleader much of the time. I got into the habit of work as an emotional boost. It makes me feel better to know that I got closer to my goals. Sometimes though if something is stressing me out then I will work to try to make myself feel better, but the work will just stress me out more, so I will try to cure that with more work... This got to the point where my whole body tensed up, and I got sick for over a month. Still though I continued learning, and I've started learning how to lower the pressure I put on myself while still getting things done. I've also started putting emphasis on doing things just to relax. I made a major milestone in my learning at about the same moment that I learned my grandpa had died. If I had learned he died a few minutes later my last post would have been about my success instead of his death.
Grandpa's service on Saturday was amazing. There was a Hawaiian quartet of guys singing, playing guitar, and ukulele. Songs of the islands, and of love. Hula dancers. Yodeling. Many people talking about the huge difference he made in their lives. My grandpa lived a good life, and that has gotten me thinking about how I want to live mine. I've been working on parts of it for years, and now I think I have some idea of how I want to put them together.