Sunday, December 5, 2010

Reverb Day 5

Prompt: Let Go. What (or whom) did you let go of this year? Why?

This year I let go of my dream of getting my Ph.D. Ever since I was in undergrad I have dreamed of one day getting a doctorate degree and teaching at the collegiate level. For the past two and a half years this dream has been heavily watered by my counseling supervisor who continually asks when I'm going to start working on it, tells me about schools where he is sure I could get a scholarship, and tempts me with comments about the looming need for female faculty in the graduate counseling department of my alma mater - of which he is the chair. My husband has come to expect that on days when I meet with my supervisor, I will most likely come home with some new plan cooked up about the how/where/when of making this dream come true.

Enter: Liam.

Having a baby really does change everything. A piece of me fights writing this because I don't want to be perceived as someone who abandons all of their own hopes and passions and lives vicariously through their children. Another piece of me says, "no, that's a fear that has been created by our uber-individualistic culture and not a valid, godly thing to worry about." So, I'll write it. It isn't that having Liam in our lives has caused me to no longer want to work toward a doctorate degree. It isn't that putting in the work or having the opportunities that would come as a result sound any less appealing. The real reason for letting go of the dream is that now I realize, as I wrote a few days ago, how much work it is to parent well (I'm sure I don't fully realize it, but I'm starting to get a much clearer idea than I had a year ago). I'm not sure there are enough hours in a day & energy in my brain to invest what I want to invest in my children while simultaneously investing what is required to do doctoral work. Some people do it and it works out great. I might be able to do it and have it work out great ... it's just not a risk I want to take unless the Lord makes it abundantly clear that it is His plan for me. If that were to happen I would know that He would provide the time and energy I would need and I'd be willing to step up to the plate.

Until that time, Ciao, Ph.D.

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