The past few weeks have gone by extremely fast but at this point I’m at the end of my doctoral journey. It’s been a long six years and I can’t believe that I have been in school consistently since 2008. That’s an entire decade of my life that I can’t get back. I haven’t even decided to real if it’s been worth it. However, I think that so far it has. I’ve had the opportunity to work full time and live in multiple places while working on my education. But now it’s time to make new goals as the ink on the new initials after my name continue to dry. I need to find something meaningful and while traditionally I’ve found that in education, I’m open for a change. If I’m being honest, I’d love to spend some dedicated time addressing my rotted carcass of a love life but that could be problematic and it isn’t a guaranteed win. It’s a hope. Needless to say, I have to fill my time with other things than school at this point. It’s going to be weird not having a paper due or assignments to complete. Right now my focus is on my job search and figuring out where I’ll be living next. I want to enjoy the feeling of completing the highest degree that one can earn but it just feels somewhat hollow at this point. It’s not a letdown but it’s just weird. I want to start writing more on a creative basis and I’ve been doing better so far this year with making in-person connections with people. I’ve had the opportunity to reconnect and have already traveled to Europe once this year. I would love to do more traveling but most of all I think I also want a real “home base” for once. Like an actual home/apartment where I live permanently. I want my life post-PhD to involve getting settled down at some point and moving to a different chapter that could possibly include marriage and kids. However, it’s going to take a huge shift in focus and being deliberate in creating the life that I want. I’m determined but I need to plan so that I know the next thing I’m working towards. I have to fill this empty space of time.
I’ve never thought of myself as being a great writer. Maybe because I’m an avid reader and I’m never as interested in something that I’ve written as I am in someone else’s work. However, one thing that I enjoy doing is proofreading and editing for other people. I’ve done personal statements, resumes, research papers, term papers, and letters of reference. I love the process of turning sloppy sentences and long paragraphs into concise and easy to understand concepts and ideas. I feel like your writing should flow instead of being choppy and difficult. One thing I really appreciate about good writers is that they can hold my attention and I’m less likely to be distracted because the sentence structure adds instead of takes away from the story. That being said, while I enjoy proofreading and editing, I can’t do it for my own work. There have been probably hundreds of grades I’ve gotten on papers that could have been higher if I had taken the time to review what I had written before turning it in. Usually this occurs because I’m tired of the topic and just want to get the paper over with and I no longer care about what grade I get because the paper is finished so I know I’ll probably get a 70 doing the bare minimum (bad logic I know). Also, I get way too attached to my work and I can’t be unbiased. It’s very hard for me to take a step back and critically read my own writing for mistakes and spelling errors. I’ve been tasked with writing a personal statement. This is not a hard feat but it feels impossible because writing about myself and my strengths isn’t on my list of fun things to do. I know I’ll have to ask someone to proofread it after I’ve written it because I’ll be biased and cut myself a lot of slack if I do it myself.