Weird

We’re both running on fumes, in the midst of our crazy-quilt travel-and-move summer. On top of that, Margaret’s just feeling plain weird, coming back to Durham after having left for a year. I’m feeling waves of intense emotion as I realize that although I’m still uneasy about finding work for next year, and though we’ll still have to move again next summer, I no longer have any of the frustrations that had weighed on me back at Seabury.
 
This dawned on me as I was wondering why it felt so intensely good to return the U-Haul today. It’s not just that being responsible for the Big Green Dinosaur was stressful, nor that driving the thing wore us out — I suspect that the U-Haul contract was the last obligatory connection I had with Evanston.
 
So I still have worries about my future employment, but I don’t have residual anxieties, annoyances, disappointments, burdens from my situation at Seabury. Every twenty minutes or so, a wave of release shudders through my body, I sigh, and I let go a handful of past problems.

3 comments / Add your comment below

  1. i’ve been going through my own uncertainty, involving many of the same elements, at the same time as you. in some ways, totally different, and in others, just the same. so i’ve been getting much strength by following the details.

    i’m a tad behind you on this one, with still some anxiety about employment next year, and slightly more ties to the “old”. so it’s been nice to read your bits, and think, “ah, that’s what i can expect…” and so far, yeah, it’s been true.

  2. Akma, having had my own share of institutional difficulties, I’m so pleased for you that you’re shedding layers of Seabury problems. And I know you know this, but … do recognize that it will take some time for those problems all to go away — some residual issues will no doubt crop up in the months to come, seemingly out of the blue — so be gentle with yourself.

  3. Ah, thank you, WN — in extremely different ways, yes, but I greatly appreciate your recognizing my feelings. I’ve tried to not kvetch too much about my situation at Seabury, for a variety of reasons, but I expect you have heard of some elements of it. Anyway, I cut loose with several “Woohoo!”s as we drove north and it sank in that I really was moving from an ecosystem in which I was misplaced and constrained to a very different ecosystem. There’s no avoiding some degree of workplace frustration, of course, but there’s a difference between the frustrations that nettle and vex (on one hand) and the frustrations that corrode the soul (on the other). I’ve been thrilled to read about your excited satisfaction (and disappointed to read about your recent disappointment); your experience supports my hope that good things lie ahead.

    Thomas, I’m sorry to hear about the turmoil in your life, and I pray that the story turns for the better for you, as well. I have a morbid dread of unemployment (“not being a good provider” stuff), which the very peculiar job market in academic tends to amplify (and the church’s ambivalence — or sometimes downright lack of interest — toward academic clergy likewise intensifies; honestly, one sometimes gets the impression that the church has more opportunities for philanderers, embezzlers, abusers, and outright incompetents than for professors).

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