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fade poem

I try to do things for me but I want to do them for you.

So your goals become mine and I forget who I am anymore.

Instant affinity

laelene Post in general blog

Sometimes you meet someone and you’re instantly drawn to them. This has been happening to me a lot lately and I can think of many people over the course of my life like that.

Today I was volunteering at a Special Olympics Volleyball Tournament and met a nice man named Jim. He was helping with ref work because his daughter was volunteering as part of her volleyball team. At first it was a few quick exchanges that were friendly. After a few of those, we found ourselves having a conversation around our involvement in the event and our minimal knowledge of volleyball. We exchanged nice to meet yous and continued with our day, only saying bye when things were wrapping up.

There was a certain sweetenness and beauty to the ephemeral interaction we had. I will always think fondly of it and maybe we’ll encounter each other at another event, but there was no need to stay in touch beyond this. Strange how much peace that brings me.

On the other hand, I met a woman in another graduate program a few weeks ago and we hit it off immediately, after only talking for 2 minutes. We got in touch with each other and grabbed lunch together recently. Somehow I knew just 30 seconds into meeting her that I wanted to be friends and I could tell she felt similarly. How do we make these snap judgments? It’s fascinating to me.

In the microcosm of school, we’re able to get in touch without feeling like it’s creepy, but in the greater world it’s often a lot harder. Somehow people aren’t as comfortable and get spooked if you come on strong. It’s an interesting dynamic to contend with. I’m not sure how I would have reacted if Jim had asked to stay in touch. I certainly would have been open to it, but it may have been too much.

Have you had these kinds of encounters too? What do you think about them?

Value is arbitrary

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I’ve been having some fascinating conversations this week about what makes something valuable. I personally believe that value is a human construct – nothing inherently has value or not, but we assign meaning to each component of our lives. Of course, with people being as different as they are, this means that everything’s value can be interpreted vastly differently.

Granted, it’s not completely arbitrary and certain things are valued for their usefulness. However, we also have such different opinions on how important uses are that the prescribed value of anything could vacillate tremendously. I mean, just look at the stock market and VC funding.

This even extends to less tangible things like relationships and experiences. We each choose to put more or less value on the people in our lives and the activities we choose to do. Someone who sees a relationship as highly valuable will be more willing to invest energy into it. Someone who treasures certain experiences would be willing to spend more time and money on it.

This can be rather tenuous – the moment we change our minds about the worth of something, it shifts our world view. Just like that, we can stop caring and pay absolutely no heed to what was once a priority. We’re really just living in a world where people generally agree to certain standards. But at any point, that could all come crashing down on us if we stop believing in the worth of whatever it is that props it all up.

The world is what we make it to be…

Second year

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School is back in session and I have yet to get into the swing of things. I still need to get course readers and other materials for class! It’s so surreal to be returning as a second year now, with half of my MBA career behind me. Bright new faces are in the midst of tackling the toughest part of the program while I’m getting the opportunity to reconnect with my classmates after a summer apart.

I’m going to cherish this year and everything it brings, because no part of my life will ever be like it again. I want to take advantage of the opportunity to have so many friends nearby and on a similar schedule. We’ve talked about hanging out and going on trips and basically enjoying each others’ company. I want to get a group together for skydiving, a Yosemite trip, a visit to Iceland, and so much more.

I’ll also be looking to establish strong relationships with the first years and accomplish some things through the clubs I’m involved with. The classes I’m taking are interesting for both personal and professional development, so I’m looking forward to that. Plus, it’s so fun to have class with people you love to be around. I really hope these are friendships that are going to last me a lifetime. I know some of them certainly are incredible and I look forward to seeing where the future takes us all. For now, I’m just trying to remember what it means to be a student because all I want to do is be an MBA! 😉

Moving On

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I’ve been planning to move up to NorCal to work at Cisco after graduating ever since I got the internship offer back in October. After working there this summer, I got back this week and learned that they decided not to extend me a full-time offer. So now that I’m a free agent looking for a job upon graduation, I’ve got a lot of options to consider.

Where do I want to live? What type of companies do I want to apply for? Should I keep looking for a rotational program?

It’s strange, having the ground shift underneath your feet. I feel like I’ve been sent into a freefall and a new world is opening up below me. It’s a brand new universe that I get to create as I fall into it, and right now I’m not sure what I want it to look like. So here I am, considering what I want it to be.

While I’m disappointed that I didn’t get the offer, I’ve never shied away from a world of opportunity, so I’m leaning in to the exciting possibilities that re-recruiting will offer me. We’ll see where I land!


laelene Post in general blog

It's my 3-year wedding anniversary and my summer internship is nearly over. Soon I'll be back in LA to start my second year at Marshall and earn that MBA.


It's a feeling of loss and confusion. I've dreamt of going to b-school since I was 13 and now here I am, staring at the precipice of my goals. Some may call me foolish. "An MBA is a means to an end, not the end itself," they'd say.


But to me, it was a dream, a goal, an end. And it certainly marks a very treasured stage of my life. I've always been about doing things for the experience and this one is half over. I'll never get it again.

Sure, I'll go do great things with my career. I'll find joy in other experiences. Yet there's a melancholy that haunts me. Have I had a dream longer than this one? I held it for 17 long years, never wavering.

What's my new north star? What will guide me for the next two decades?? A career goal? A personal goal?

I'm excited to get back to school and my classmates. I'll cherish this year, yet every day may hurt just a little as it brings us closer to the end of this era. I hope to make the most of it, so I have the best memories to keep.

Sometimes I wish I could rewind life. Do I have to keep marching on?


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dusk over hills with cloudsAs the sun waves its last goodbye

And disappears over the hills

The brilliant colors fade to pastels




The temperature cools

Fireflies come out

And there’s a certain beauty

A little bit of magic in the air


A hectic day gives way to a quiet evening

It’s the tranquility I seek

I feel so serene, so calm

As peace washes over my heart


In that moment, it’s all I need


That girl with purple hair

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As a treat to myself for a job well done presenting to a VP and to celebrate the holiday weekend, I finally tried purple hair a week ago. I’ve gotten highlights and streaks of color before, but never done my full head. I was inspired by a co-worker who has dark purple hair, which is quite subtle. Mine came out brighter than I wanted, but I’ve grown into it and quite like it. In fact, I often forget my hair looks like this now. What do you think?



Kitty lovin’

Celebrating the 4th with very patriotic purple.

Glowing purple.

First day at work like this!

I then spent a day exploring Lands End in all my hues. 🙂

And finally, I managed to match the tables at an MBA mixer BBQ. >.<

Fast that food

laelene Post in general blog

I’ve been up in NorCal for nearly six weeks and today was the first time it occurred to me that I could eat fast food. Ever since coming up here, I’ve been trying all sorts of local restaurants (mainly Asian cuisine) and pigging out on boba. Somehow along the way, chain restaurants fell off the radar.

As I was trying to figure out what to eat tonight, I wanted something that wouldn’t be much effort. Enter fast food. The realization that I didn’t have to decide between Chinese or Vietnamese was like a revelation. I’d completely forgotten to even consider other options. 

So I took the easy way out and got McDonald’s. But sadly enough, it didn’t fill me up!! I’m still craving boba. ? I’ve now broken my unintentional fast from fast food. I don’t plan on using that backup often but at least it’s in my back pocket again. ?

Celebrating a most excellent day

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What a wonderful day it turned out to be. I woke up a little anxious because I had a lot on my plate, including my first presentation to a VP at work. I took it one step at a time though, and make it through a crazy day with some great wins.

I started the morning working in a small team on survey questions for a group intern project before doing a run-through of the presentation with a colleague in Engineering HR. I then had to focus on other aspects of the group project (an interview guide) and then it was time to go volunteer at a Party on the Patio event. There happened to be an intern expo happening in the same area, so I swung by and was able to get a really nice leather notebook! That made me happy.

Then while volunteering, we biked to blend smoothies, handed out patriotic bead necklaces, and encouraged people to enter the raffles. I met some cool people and the time felt nice and long, giving me a mental break from everything else. I earned a free t-shirt and lunch for my time, which was nice.

I geared up for work again, returning to my building and meeting about some data around diversity. I met with my Eng HR buddy again to go through the presentation again and it was really coming together at that point. We took a break to listen to Bryan Cranston (some famous dude you may know) talk to Chuck Robbins (our CEO) for the closing keynote of CiscoLive! out in Vegas. Another colleague in Eng HR had put together a viewing party complete with cake, milk, popcorn, and other snacks! Nom.

I left that party early to get into gear for my meeting with the VP, which started a little late and with a slightly frazzled audience. She had just wrapped up another meeting that didn’t seem to leave her in the best of moods. Luckily, the presentation went off without a hitch and she really liked it, with just minor comments and a great dialogue around what the intention and purpose of our work was. I was happy to hear her say she ended up in a much better mood after our meeting. 🙂 My team was incredible in getting me prepared for such a successful meeting!

On a high, I went to chat with one of the advisors we have who has been through our internship and the rotation program. She and I had a great conversation before I returned to the intern area and began to prep for my evening interview. I had signed up to conduct the very first interview we’d use for the group intern project. I tested out the technology with some colleagues, worked out some kinks, and then got ready for the conversation. My interviewee was in China and such a fun, vibrant woman! I had a lot of fun talking with her and I think it was wonderful content.

I was pretty drained by the end of the day, having been at the office nearly 12 hours. I got home to rest and was about to go to bed when my host texted to chat. He and I ended up discussing the terms for the rest of my stay and I’ll be moving to a new location this weekend! I’m absolutely pooped now but I wanted to remember this day when I got in quite a few wins. The past two weeks have been intense and I’m looking forward to a slightly slower pace through next week as everyone peaces out for the holiday weekend.

And now I’d like to go pass out, thank you very much. I’ll reward myself by trying to sleep in a bit tomorrow.

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