I feel like I owe my followers an apology for my abrupt three month hiatus from writing.
Over this time I developed a severe case of writers block along with taking care of more pressing issues. Those matters include taking care of myself specifically improving my health and contemplating a plan that puts me back on the path towards my goals.
First my plan.
I have discussed this plan with a close group of people that include my mother and her husband, my sister, and my aunt and her wife. That is all I can say at this time, but it has involved me improving my health.
When I arrived in Colorado in December 2013, I weighed 215 pounds. Over the last year-and-a-half I have dropped 30 pounds. It was around this time last year that I started running and I have been logging my times and distances. I go for somewhere between 3.5 to 5 miles in a Denver suburb and I do this between 3 to 5 times a week. Recently I have been going towards the higher end of 5 miles and running more frequently per week which sometimes included me violating my "No Sunday Running" rule.
It was more of a guideline anyway.
I can run a mile non-stop somewhere between 8:30 to 9 minutes with my best time coming on a local high school track at 8 minutes even. For a 1.5-mile run, I can do it in the 13-14:30 range. Again my best time for a 1.5 mile run came on the same track where I completed that distance at 12:22.
All these runs are in the high altitude of Colorado. I am curious about what my runs would be if I was at a lower elevation.
Which brings me to Texas.
I moved from Texas to Colorado because to bluntly put it: I screwed up.
I made some poor decisions concerning my college education ranging from taking classes I was woefully unprepared to take, to the stubbornness of not recognizing that I was in over my head, and neglecting my academics.
I originally started out as a math major with a minor in political science under the advice of a family member. I then decided to double major because as most of you have probably figured out I developed an interest in politics. My goal was to stand out from my fellow college students so that when I did eventually graduate I would have more of a leg up than my contemporaries.
Unfortunately I got bogged down with the math. I was noticing that it was taking me much longer to complete my math homework than I expected. I also did not feel like I was retaining the knowledge during class and with the homework assignments leading to me feeling anxious during exams.
I also felt like my professors were unwilling to help me when I was struggling with both the math and political science. It was a frustrating cycle.
There were times I wanted to walk into one of my professor's office and tell them sternly, "I have other classes. Your class is not the most important one."
Thank God I never did that because it probably would have caused me more grief than I needed. Also, they would not have cared one bit.
It was not until the Fall Semester of 2013 I finally had enough of math.
In the previous semester - a summer semester, I retook two classes: Differential Equations I and Calculus II. I passed Differential Equations I but barely. Because I had knowledge of the course, I figured that would assist me and help me get a better grade. Instead I got the same grade as I did before: a D.
Same with Calculus II. I had gotten a B before and I was going to retake it to get an A. Instead I flunked that course. Even though I had a terrible professor, I bet against the house and lost.
Still I was going to do my best to push forward and do what I could for the next semester.
Unfortunately the struggle continued into the fall.
It was the lead up to a test in Real Analysis which is proof writing- again, a class I was woefully under-prepared for. I had taken it several times before, having dropped it once and failing it on other occasions. I was doing my best to hold my own, but it was still a cycle of frustration. I tried to seek out tutoring but because of the advanced class level there was no one available to assist me.
I had enough. I finally recognized that I reached my limit - pardon the pun. I excelled at math in elementary, middle, and high schools. Math saved me in A and Nuclear Power Schools in the Navy. I gone as far as I could go in math, and it was time to say enough.
I dropped that class and took a W. However it was the last drop I was afforded and I could not use it on the other math class I was struggling in: Numerical Analysis. I did not know what was going on in that class thus falling into the category of classes I had no business in taking in the first place.
I changed my major to political science with a minor in mathematics.
I was doing well in American Foreign Policy and Music In Politics. I had a third political science class and it was a political philosophy class which I was having trouble due to the reading. I could not make sense of the reading and again I was feeling overwhelmed.
I also take responsibility for the times I was neglectful in my academics. Yes, I did skip classes and not do required assignments. It certainly did contribute to the troubles I was having. However, I did not make things easier by perusing an overloaded course load in trying to major in two subjects when it was probably easier to major in one and minor in another.
If I had dialed down the courses and realized earlier that trying to double major would have been detrimental to both my physical and mental well beings, my college experience might have been more positive.
After the Fall Semester of 2013, I was placed on academic probation due to a low overall GPA. I was suspended from attending classes at North Texas for one semester. My suspension was lifted over a year ago, but I was not ready to return due to one other situation.
Not to go into too many details, but they are a wreck in part due to poor planning.
I did not anticipate college would take me this long to complete. I thought I would be done with school by the end of 2012, but again, due to the stipulated academic situation I was finishing up five years in school which led to my finances drying up.
I recognized I was in dire straits the day the Fall 2013 semester ended. I loaded up my car with the important items and my cat Tristan. We left Texas on 24 December 2013, Christmas Eve, and have not been back since.
We have been living with family members for almost 18 months now who have been very supportive as I slowly and gradually get back on my feet.
I am 30 hours short of completing my degree. Once I return to Texas, that will be my primary focus. The timetable for returning to Texas to complete this task is as of right now undetermined, but that day will come.
Which brings me to this point about my writing.
I took a break from writing because it was needed.
Yes, there have been lots of things going on.
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Senator Bernie Sanders announced their presidential run for the Democratic nomination.
Senators Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, and many other Republicans announcing their run for their party's nomination.
Baltimore, Cleveland, and Chicago and a more heightened attention towards incidents concerning police brutality.
The swearing in of a new US Attorney General, Loretta Lynch
ISIS, IS, ISIL, or whatever that group that is calling themselves these days is taking over portions of Iraq and Syria.
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady received a four game suspension for his involvement in the team's football deflation scandal as well as the Patriots losing two draft picks.
The Nebraska legislature voted and overrode their governor's veto to abolish the death penalty.
The national backlash over Indiana passing their state's Religious Freedom Restoration Act that attacked the LGBT community.
The Supreme Court heard three cases that could be announced later this month: same-sex marriage, the constitutionality of using certain drugs in lethal injection, and the second case concerning ObamaCare in three years.
The 114th Congress
The discussion over the Trans Pacific Partnership among the Democratic base.
After much debate, the Senate passed the USA FREEDOM Act.
In May an Amtrak passenger train carrying 238 passengers derailed in a Philadelphia neighborhood killing 5. The next day a House committee led by Republicans voted to cut Amtrak funding. The investigation into the accident is still ongoing.
How the Colorado Legislature handled the first session of the 70th General Assembly with Democrats in charge of the House while Republicans were in charge of the Senate.
Former House Speaker Dennis Hastert was indicted for violating banking laws to pay $3.5 million to an unnamed person to cover up so-called past misconduct that is slowly being revealed as sexual assault. Hastert appeared before a federal judge in Illinois and pleaded not guilty to the charges.
In a televised interview with Diane Sawyer, former Olympic athlete Bruce Jenner revealed she is transgender and transitioning from male to female. Recently Jenner took to Twitter to reveal Vanity Fair's June cover and new name: Caitlyn.
And of course other stories that did not catch my eye but should receive heightened attention.
After this hiatus, I am considering this a restart.
It is gradual so bear with me.
I enjoy writing and sharing my thoughts on what is going on in my spheres of interests. I also enjoy the process whether it is through writing or also incorporating a video as I have with this post.
When I started this experiment five years ago, that is what this was: an experiment. I sometimes look at what I wrote and sometimes look at what I didn't get to post in my folder. Maybe someday I will get back to the stuff I didn't post, clean it up, and post it. Or make it part of a lost series.
Despite the many obstacles and challenges I have endured recently, I will continue writing as long as I see it
I am amazed at what I have created. It is a mess of sorts because I am not a writer.
Surprised by that admission? Someone who writes admits that he is not a writer. I am surprised by that as well.
So let's continue this experiment in whatever capacity this may become.