Cincinnati-Bound

In March, I was offered a position as an Assistant Professor at a 2-year college just north of Cincinnati. When I started my job search in October (because academic job searches take forever), my goal was to get a tenure-track job at a small, teaching-focused college in or very near a Midwestern city, and that’s exactly what I ended up with. It’s a great job, and I’m excited for the all of the professor perks like finally having my own office.

I was actually born in southwestern Ohio and lived there until my family moved to Wisconsin when I was ten. Graduate school took me back to southwestern Ohio for two years before we moved to New York, and now we’re headed back to southwestern Ohio once again. It’s starting to feel like the universe is sending me a very pointed message about where I’m supposed to be.

Aidan managed to get a job in Cincinnati pretty quickly, which is great but also means he’s going to be moving down there in less than two weeks. Meanwhile, I’ll be staying behind to finish up the semester and pack our stuff up. Oh, and I have to actually finish my dissertation so that I can graduate. NBD.

So my life right now revolves around writing and moving logistics. It is all equal parts exciting and terrifying. There have been good parts about being in New York, but I am so done with living in Syracuse and even more done with grad school. I think there are good things on the horizon for us in Ohio, but I can’t think too long about all the work I have to do over the next two months in order to get there or I start to feel a little ill.

Anyway, I had been keeping my sewing machine on my desk and would just push it to the side when I needed to work. But I decided to pack all of my sewing stuff away a few weeks ago to clear my workspace and my head. (No regrets–it worked.) I’ve even asked Aidan to take my sewing machine down to Ohio with him when he goes rather than risk it to the not-so-gentle hands of movers. That means that I probably won’t be doing any sewing until July. In my non-writing time, I’ve reverted back to my early grad school knitting habits and have been exclusively knitting socks for the last five weeks. I’ve finished one full pair, have two pairs in progress, and just got another three skeins of sock yarn in the mail today.

At this point in my knitting life, socks require next to no mental exertion on my part, so I’ve basically cut out as many crafty distractions as possible without totally giving it up. I just keep reminding myself that this state of affairs is temporary. Plus, Aidan promised to buy me a serger once I defend my diss. I think that should be enough motivation to keep me limping along. Back to work!

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12 thoughts on “Cincinnati-Bound

  1. Can’t remember if I’ve commented before, but I’m also in the last year of my Ph.D. and just wanted to tell you to keep your chin up! You can do it! I’m not defending until October, but a bunch of guys in my lab are hitting the same point you are. It’ll be so worth it in the end!

    • Thanks for the encouragement, Alicia. As daunting as this last bit is, it really is exciting to be near the end. And it’s always nice to hear from other people who understand what the process is like!

  2. YOU ROCK! I’m so excited for you all and this big transition and new adventure. When I got my first tt job I bought myself 1. some really comfy slippers to put on as soon as I got home from work because I knew I’d be very tired with all the new demands and unfamiliar territory and a 2. small peppermill for my office because I believe in proper seasoning of one’s lunch leftovers. I thus recommend you definitely get some slippers, but also treat yourself and celebrate the hell out of wrapping up your doctorate.
    Question: how are the cats getting to Ohio?

    • Slippers are definitely a good idea–something nice to look forward to at the end of the day.

      The cats will be traveling in pet crates in the car with me. This will be the third time I’ve moved this way with them and it’s been pretty terrible in the past. I plan to break the drive up into two shorter legs but they never really calm down or relax and they each have their own gross/annoying thing that they end up doing as a result of their anxiety. It’s definitely the part I’m dreading the most.

  3. Congratulations! I’m so happy to hear of a humanities success story! I had an interview at a two-year school in February, but nothing came of it. I’ll be sticking around another year and working on my dissertation, blech. I’m also ready to be done with grad school! Good luck with the move (especially with the cats!) and starting the new job in the fall!

    • Thanks, Gina. The humanities market is so tough right now. I’m in writing and rhetoric, and our market is less competitive than the lit market but you can tell that it’s tightening up and it’s getting a lot harder for people to get permanent, TT gigs. I feel like I really lucked out.

      I’m sorry to hear that nothing came of your interview in February. I’ll be keeping all of my fingers crossed for you this coming school year when you start applying again!

      • Nice! My husband’s post-PhD goals are very similar to yours. Amidst all the scary job-search stuff it is very encouraging to know you found one. And one you’re excited about. Congratulations…no small feat!

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