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JaimaleeAs I started preparing my daughter Jennea for the bright, yet challenging, world ahead of her at her own university last year, she asked with concern and love, “What are you going to do now mum?” Without thinking, I answered her as I always had: “Live bold, follow bliss, experience despite fear”.

I’ve said these words countless times to Jennea as she was growing up. A mantra from mother to daughter. When I really thought about it, I wasn’t sure what they meant for me. Words that began as statements of encouragement to her soon inspired me to follow my own adventure into an exciting academic unknown.

My bliss is writing. The moment I first read about the MLit (Hons) English degree at BU, I knew it was for me. I spent months writing and editing my application essay. When I received my unconditional offer, I rejoiced to every soul I knew, although reactions didn’t mirror the excitement and optimism I had anticipated.

“Wow, Jaime, you’re almost 40. Aren’t you a little old to go back to school?”

“You’ve never lived outside Colorado. Are you sure you want to live in a different country?”

“Aren’t you afraid of quitting your stable job to be a writer?”

Then I told Jennea… “Mum!! That’s amazing! I’m so proud of you!”

Through her eyes, despite my fear of the future, I did for myself what I had always taught her to do: I chose Bournemouth University as my firm choice, I quit my job, I packed my bags, and I gave Jennea one last hug before flying to Bournemouth. I cannot see what the future will bring, but with the utmost of determination and motivation, I will…

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