It’s not that I’m not blogging on purpose. Really. I’d like to be blogging more. I have a bunch of good pedagogical things to write about. I have a week to see if anybody is interested in putting together a panel for AHA next year — that’s by February 15. I have dozens of job applications to read by next week. I have stuff to review for Big Committee. I am still trying to keep up with the new survey prep and the brand-new upper division prep in a field not entirely my own. I have a book review to write (currently on a deadline extension). Oh … and did I mention I have a conference paper to write? A conference paper I’ve barely started? OK, it’s not due till May. But I really need it drafted by the middle of March, because I want to enjoy a visit from a very close friend (plus, I’d like to have it in a stage where he can read it without me feeling like a total idiot!). Somewhere in between, I need to put together a sensible plan and make arrangements to go to do some research this summer. I need to go to England, I think, as Germany is much harder to arrange. So it’s BL and maybe Cambridge. And then I have to find funding. And next year, I have to apply for funding ahead of time.
So that’s what I’m doing now. Not blogging much seems a good idea till I get a handle on my life.
In the meantime, full-time T-T jobs are hard. Being at a so-called teaching college that wants new faculty to publish is hard. Trying to keep up is hard. And it’s different. It’s really different. When you’re on short-term contracts, you’ve got the stress of looking for the next job. Even in the best situations, and I was extremely fortunate to have had full-time visiting positions, I think you’re never as invested. I was so lucky in that I got the chance to get used to service, and I was supported in my attempts to find a better job and keep up a minimal research agenda. I made great friends, people who will be my friends forever, I hope. But I always knew I’d have to leave.
I really love most of the things about my new job. I’ve got some great colleagues here, too. And I have never been so scared in my life. I’m feeling like an imposter again. My dean has put me on a Big Scary Committee, and my colleagues seem to think I know what I’m doing. But it doesn’t help much. I’ve never worried so much about doing my job well enough. And, at the same time, the honeymoon is over. I’m starting to get a feel for some of the political currents (really not that bad compared to what I’ve seen, but they’re there) and, like many new faculty, am finding that some of the promises made at hiring were based on what had gone before. In fact, SLAC has not really done the groundwork to support the kinds of things they told us we were hired to do. This makes me even more desperate to do well and get some work in press before I go up for tenure and promotion — just in case. So, in addition to the stress of the new job, I’m putting more on myself, just in case I need to go on the market. The upshot is, of course, that I seem to be just this side of paralysis.
Ew. I just realised something about myself I’m a little worried about. I seem to be approaching both my professional and my personal life the same way. Not sure I like what that says.