Well, it turns out my employers never found out about my Master's degree after all. A decision was made at the last minute to not include the credentials of the office staff, given that most patients would rather know the qualifications of the therapists over those of the peons... er, admin people. I personally think the move is smart, but I also think it's sneaky. I think the higher ups thought to themselves that it might reflect poorly on the clinic to have such qualified people doing regular-jane jobs for slightly less than average wages (the other admin people have at least BAs, too). Ah, well.
Anyway, my experiences lately have been stoking ye olde academic fire in my belly, although I'm certainly the last person in this world who would have ever thought my mind could turn in that direction ever again. When I made my grand exit out of university (last April already!), I was given a gentle talking to by my dear supervisor. Like the all-knowing chorus in a Greek play (most likely a tragedy), she seemed unwavering in her conviction when she told me:
"You can't escape the academy, Dana. It's your destiny."
(And yes, she said it just as ominously and outrageously as it seems. This is a direct quote!)
I had laughed her comments off at the time, thinking them to be overdramatic and even a bit preposterous (me in the university?! Forever??!!! Hahahahaha-- good one!) But deep inside, I was shaken. She just seemed so sure of herself. Would I really end up back in the academy? The same university that had sucked my soul out with the intensity of a leech on a vampire using a vacuum in a black hole? (Kudos to ffwd magazine for enlightening me on the degree to which things could suck!) Could I ever escape my so-called destiny?
Well, the first year following my thesis defense didn't prove to be so difficult. If anything, I was still getting over my dry heaves and anxiety attacks until this March at the very least. I thought about the stress-ridden, eternally preoccupied demon I had become during my MA program, and I couldn't believe that poor Marty managed to suffer through it all. He even married me halfway through my program! (Now that's what I call commitment!) When I think of school, any excitement or curiosity that I feel about researching and learning is nearly instantly overtaken by nauseating memories of having no time or life outside of school. And debates. Endless debates and 'critical engagement' with the 'issues'. Blech. I hate debating.
So with all of these nasty thoughts about university, why is it that lately I've been feeling the yearning to learn? I've been searching through university websites listlessly, hoping to stumble upon some program that would jump out and squeal 'take me!'... So far, nothing, but I'm still searching. How odd.
I think I've finally come to terms with what my professor sensed all along: I would never be fully satisfied in a job where my skills weren't fully utilized and where I couldn't flex my brain muscles. Many jobs outside of the university just won't cut it for somebody who has the geeky desire to do research running through her veins! Sure, I'm learning at my job now, but it's not the same. Not at all.
So, in the meantime, although I hear the siren call of... um... proselytizing?... I haven't yet turned my ship towards that sweet destruction. And as far as destiny is concerned, when it comes down to it, I'd much rather have my destiny be to carry out my life in the academy than to kill my mother, marry my father, and then scratch out my eyes in horror when I find out what I've done. Maybe it's just me, though.