My time in high school
Attended high school in the
Overall high school experience
8/10. I had a great group of friends who were incredibly supportive, so no matter what else was happening, I had someone to rely on.
Grades in high school
B's and C's. I got A's in english and history and C's in math and science.
English, History / Social Studies, Performing Arts
I struggled with math because I have a numbers-related learning disability. Although I could have had more time on tests because of this, I never told anyone because I didn't want special treatment.
Life since high school
Attended college / university at
I went to the University of California at Santa Cruz (UCSC).
I majored in philosophy.
Post-graduate education or training
I did one year of law school at McGeorge School of Law.
Places lived in US
California, Texas, Washington
Current occupations / past occupations
I work part-time as a freelance editor. I'm also occasionally a freelance online textbook author. Prior to that, I worked full-time at a reference book company, and before that, I was a full-time paralegal. During college, I worked as an english and philosophy tutor specializing in students for whom English was a second language and those with learning disabilities.
Industries I've worked in
- Information (e.g. Publishing, Film, Broadcast, Telecommunications, Libraries)
- Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services (e.g. Law, Accounting, Interior Design, Graphic Design, R&D, PR, Advertising, etc.)
- Administrative and Support Services
- Educational Services
Did your education prepare you for your career or occupation?
I was a philosophy major, and I've actually written chapters for an online philosophy textbook, which is pretty neat. However, philosophy prepared me in other important ways as well--it taught me how to think without teaching me what to think. Essentially, majoring in philosophy taught me to think cogently and critically, and that is valuable in any profession.
Has your education or career/occupation trajectory ever changed? How?
I did a year of law school, so when I left, I wasn't sure what to do with myself. Being a paralegal seemed like an obvious choice, and from there, being an editor wasn't a big leap.
A little introspection...
To me, being successful means...
having the time and energy to do better today than I did yesterday.
My definition of success has changed over time.
Earlier in my life, my definition of success was tied to my academic and job-related successes. Now I realize that focusing on those external factors was a way to avoid the introspection necessary to define success for myself.
My greatest accomplishment to date and what I’ve learned from it
My greatest accomplishment to date is not having children. The pressure to do so can be immense, but I've always known that doing so would not be the right choice for me. I think children bring meaning to many people's' lives, so I've learned to create my own meaning without them.
My biggest mistake or regret so far and what I’ve learned from it
My biggest mistake was going to law school. I only completed one year, but I'm still (literally) paying for it! There have been times when I've bitterly regretted making such an expensive mistake, but looking back, it truly was the right decision for me to make with the information and experience I had at the time. Although it was a mistake in hindsight, I've learned to stop blaming myself for not knowing then what I know now.
An unexpected event that significantly changed my life and how it impacted me
I stayed at a job as a paralegal even after one of the partners told me I couldn't leave his office, and when I tried to leave, he grabbed me by my arms hard enough to leave bruises and pushed me against the wall as he yelled at me. Even though I was terrified of him, I told myself that I really needed the job, so I stayed. I began to think that I didn't deserve to be treated better, and that stuck with me for years. At subsequent jobs I allowed people to treat me with less respect than I deserved without even realizing it.
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My favorite spot in or around Palo Alto
The Baylands or The Peninsula Creamery