I never thought I would reach this moment. Even though I spent the last five years of my life working towards this, I was doubtful that it would actually arrive.
So I’m here. I defended my dissertation a month ago. I finalized my edits of my dissertation and turned it in. And received a letter stating that I completed all the degree requirements. Woohoo!!! That’s so exciting!!! Finally!!! Turn up turn up!!! Thank the Lord its over!!! These are all thoughts going through my head. However, there is this small voice that is getting louder that says, “What am I supposed to do now?” “What is my purpose in life?”
In some twisted way, I became used to the insanity of graduate school. Being stressed, anxious, and overworked became the norm. Always experiencing failure and seeing no end in sight was what I had became accustomed to it. Even though I so badly wanted to be done with this lifestyle, I adapted to it. So when I had nothing to stress about, and all my blood, sweat, and tears in graduate school were actually rewarded, I just didn’t know what to do with myself. Not having a job lined up to jump right into made matters worse. I had free time, and lots of it. What the heck was I supposed to do with all this non-stressful free time?
Most people in my shoes would spend this time applying for jobs aggressively. However, I really didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life. I knew a while ago that a postdoc wasn’t for me. I ruled out pursuing a career in academia. While I have several interests, I’m not super excited about any one career path. Therefore, I’ve decided to sit and wait; not make any moves. Just wait. Self-reflect, pray, and meditate. But not move, and wait. Up until this point, I always had my life planned out. I knew what the next step was before I got there. However, this was not the case at all now. My security of knowing exactly what I want to do and how I’m going to do it is obsolete.
All I know is that I just completed my PhD. I am relocating to a new city with my husband. I am currently sleeping in until noon on most days. I take long walks on the beach. I work out at the gym. I go out and socialize with friends that I want to spend time with before I move. I’ve binged watched at least 3 shows on Netflix and Hulu. I’m almost done reading the book, “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”.
And……..I’m okay with that.