Thursday, January 19, 2012

Tides of Change

Gah.  (I've been saying that a lot lately) 

Talk about changes.  God willing and the creek don't rise- I'll be Doctor Lisa Regula Meyer in May.  Some have already taken to calling me this, saying that since I am ABD (all but dissertation) I'm entitled to the honor.  I don't feel worthy of it.  I'm teaching as an adjunct at Hiram College this term, and my students mainly call me Professor.  I don't feel worthy of that either.  Those are titles for distinguished individuals who have lead charmed lives.  Not poor kids from a back-woods rural road and living in the ghetto of Kent, Ohio and wearing torn, old, tattered clothes.  It's been especially hard because I keep hearing so often that Kim (my sister) was so pretty.  So funny.  So kind.  So smart.  Starting to turn things around.

The whole thing seems so close but so far away.  How on earth am I going to finish everything I have to do before the end of March?!  And what happens then?  I know I'm taking the summer off, to work on side-projects, to write for my self, to have a breather after six long years, to remind myself what it's like to not have deadlines constantly breathing down your neck.  But what after that?  I have applications in, including one to Hiram, for tenure track positions.  Tenure track.  Why am I thinking about tenure track?!  I've gone insane.  And I'm sure the search committee is going to see right through me.  I can't fool them, the professionals.  They'll know I'm not one of them.  They'll no I'm not professor material.  They'll see the goofy scared kid underneath.  They'll know I'm not one of them.  I don't belong. 

And then what?

Six years.  A lifetime of work.  A mountain of student loans.  For what?  To be right where I was 20 years ago?  The kid that didn't fit in?  Gah.

I keep saying "Fake it 'til you make it."  But then what?  What if you make it and still don't believe it?  When do I wake up and realize it's just a dream?  Hopefully never. 

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