I know where the summer goes
I was telling Erin that I'm starting to feel a little nervous about starting work. I wasn't expecting to. I keep wondering if I'm going to miss teaching horribly. I mean I know I'm going to miss it -- the idea of not working with kids makes me sad. But when I got close to taking teaching jobs, I kept wondering if I was going to miss linguistics horribly. And I knew I would. I think the fact is that after such a long time, any choice feels a little new and scary, and part of me wonders what things I'm ruling out by ruling other things in. It doesn't pay to dwell on that too much, because it's a paralyzing way to simply avoid making choices. But perhaps it's natural when one is on the threshhold of a major life change.
I've spent such a long time this year thinking and writing about what I want to do. I realize that I'm fortunate to have had that luxury. But at the end of everything I've come to the conclusion, not for the first time, that there are many, many things I could enjoy doing. I've also come to the conclusion that I can't actually do all of them. Not every choice is irrevocable, and in fact most choices in themselves are not. But every choice makes certain other choices irrevocable in ways that you don't necessarily realize at the time. I don't always have to be a linguist -- that particular choice is undoable -- but by getting a Ph.D. I've more or less made it impossible for me to get a job working with kids.
(Cry me a fucking river, I know.)