Thursday, March 15, 2007


After having a terrible time getting to sleep for the last four nights, I have to admit that I'm worried. Anxious, even.

I think I have some good reasons.

1. The job market. I can't say that I'm not sad, as well as worried, about my impending unemployment. I know that there's still time, etc etc, and I won't hear about the job that I interviewed for last week until early April, but as the end of the term gets closer and my phone remains stubbornly silent I can't help but feel a general, crushing weight of worry. And some sadness. I need some validation, here.

2. Money. This worry is intimately related to worry no. 1, but I feel that it deserves its own listing. I have exactly 5 more paychecks coming in, and my insurance policy expires in August. In the very very worst case, I know that I can probably teach comp as an adjunct somewhere, and probably scrape by with minimal credit card debt, provided I'm allowed to defer my student loan repayment until I get a real job. But that's not exactly an empowering thought.

3. There's a cat missing in my neighborhood. I know this cat--he's a really sweet and friendly little guy, and I've hung out with him a couple of times on my way home from campus. He's been missing for more than two weeks, which is not at all promising. This is not my cat; I don't even know the cat's owners; but I can't help but feel that everything will be better on the day when they take down all the flyers and I can hope that he's found his way home.

4. I recently bought some much-needed, very delightful new shoes, but the leather around the ankles is so stiff that wearing them is like wearing knives on my feet. I actually lay awake on Monday night in deep despair over these shoes. Which should break in eventually, I expect. But still.

Okay. That about covers it. Note that I'm not worried about my dissertation defense, or the upcoming conference. I suppose that my calm on those fronts is a good sign, since everything that I'm worried about at the moment is to some degree out of my control, while the things that are fully under my control are just fine.

I need something nice to do this afternoon.


Phul Devi said...

Hi, jb. Condolences on your anxieties: I hope things take a positive turn on all fronts soon.

1~It took me three years on the market to get a TT job, and like you, I was feeling very tightly-wound every year at this time. It's hard to get an offer while still ABD, so you're not at all behind-schedule. Just getting into the running with people who already have their degrees shows that you're regarded as a contender.

2~This is always a worry, I suppose, and I won't insult you by saying something falsely soothing. You know you'll get by, and someday, this phase will end.

3~OK, now I'm worried about that cat, too. Hope he turns up! That's why my boys aren't allowed outside (except when they sneak out).

4~There is spray-on product available at your local shoe-repair shop called "shoe-stretch." It's miraculous and wonderful.

heu mihi said...

Fabulous! Shoe-stretch! I will go to my cobbler's tomorrow, if the snow isn't too bad.

Thanks for the cheering-up; I think I kind of needed that. Most of the time I'm pretty rational about the whole process, and I'm really (mostly) okay with not getting a tenure-track gig on my first try, but by this point the process is just wearing me out. Another thing about it is that it's so isolating: I am extremely fortunate to have a fellowship this year, but that means that I spend a lot of time alone. My partner also lives four hours away, and most of my friends have graduated or moved, so there just aren't that many people with whom to commiserate at the moment--and I'm not terribly comfortable going on about my anxieties with people, anyway. Which is why blogging is so useful: I have no problem whining anonymously in print.

Anyway, thanks again, and I am feeling better!