From PhD to Here: Towards a Life outside of Academia

This May will mark my second #withaphd anniversary, and with it, the second year since I began to move away from academia and towards some kind of postac life with a PhD that has nothing to do with teaching or academic research. While I still currently work as an adjunct instructor, much as changed since the day I crossed the stage to pick up that diploma.

For one, I am no longer in that immobilizing period that is often called post-dissertation slump or post-dissertation blues. I am at home with myself in the space I am now, and I am comfortable talking about why I am leaving academia. Moreover, behind the scenes, I have been working on a business that (fingers crossed) I hope to launch this spring (when I get there, I promise to write about it).

In this blog post, I want to share some tips and tools that have helped me over the past couple years as I have transitioned from uncertainty towards a spirit of exploration and potential. I learned many of these tips from others that came before me, and I write in spirit of helping all those who might where I was a couple years ago. Continue reading “From PhD to Here: Towards a Life outside of Academia”

No Spells for This

Right now, my three-year-old son is really into magic. Sometimes he’s a witch, donning wikiwitch_blackhis $3 Target bargain witch hat and pointing my old Harry Potter magic wand at me. At other moments, he goes full-on Elsa, because Frozen is alive and well in this household. With his imagination, storytelling seems effortless. He can evoke a mood in a moment, switching gears so quickly from one scene to the next. He has never written a real word in his life, but he’s very good at making things up as he goes along.

I like to think he gets his wild imagination from me. Some of my earliest memories involve playing Heidi with my friend, usually as we listened along to the storybook-on-tape. We took turns being Heidi and Clara, and the most important scene to re-enact was the one where Clara falls on the mountaintop and there’s no way to get her back to her wheelchair. This was the dramatic climax, folks, and I was the boss. I made sure that we performed that scene exactly the way I envisioned it in my head, and my son clearly has the same intentions with his own daily play. Continue reading “No Spells for This”