I swear, there is so much truth to the old cliche, “when it rains, it pours.” Sometimes it feels like you’re in a rut for a long time, and then when you make one change, others follow.
For months I was toiling away pretty happily, doing my blogging work and very occasionally working on my dissertation. I’ve been living in my apartment for four years, mostly happily.
Then in the past week or two a bunch of things conspired to drop ball after ball of change on me at once.
First, work. I had asked a few weeks back if I could transition from part to full time and was told no, for budget reasons. That was fine; I could live with it. But then I learned that some duties were being shuffled around and I would be losing the part of my gig I liked best.
This prompted a lot of thinking on my part. Is this what I want to keep doing? Am I being valued for my skills and intelligence? Is the payoff enough compared to the amount of work I’m putting in? Most importantly, am I going to finish my PhD if I keep working this way?
I realized that the answer to basically all of those questions was no. The key was really the last one. It’s beyond time for me to buckle down and finish my doctorate. In order to do that, I need the time to work hard on my dissertation.
So I gave my two weeks notice. As of next weekend I will cease to be professionally writing about yarn. It’s sad, but it’s also exciting to move forward.
The other change is in my living situation. I’ve been in the same place since 2013. It’s been a pretty great place to live. Affordable, large by NYC standards, really close to the train, no major problems with my roommates, and so on. But I’d been thinking lately that it was time to live by myself. However, I hadn’t made any concrete plans and the whole idea was still pretty abstract, until now.
The very same day that I sent my notice in to work, my roommates asked to talk to me. Well, it turns out they each plan to move in with their respective boyfriends. So my non-concrete idea about moving has suddenly become very real.
None of these changes are bad, but it was a lot to handle at once. I’m extremely fortunate because my family can help ease the financial burden of moving, especially while unemployed. But I still have a lot to think about. Even with assistance, I have to mind my spending and be extremely cautious — which I always have, to an extent, but now it’s even more important.
If I operate under the assumption that the practical side of things will be taken care of — again, I know I’m privileged to even be able to make that assumption — this takes an emotional toll. My anxiety was through the roof in the days following all this news.
But I’m excited as much as I am scared. By leaving my job, I took control of my future and can direct my life the way I want it to go. With my roommates leaving, I can’t back out of moving to live on my own. I know I could get other roommates, but I won’t, because this is the push I need to really do what I wanted to do.
It’s new. It’s not going to be easy. But it’s going to be good.