I dream of doctorates

<waxing philosophic>

How important are dreams? How much stock should we put in our personal ambitions and goals, even when they have no evident value to others, no obvious real-world potential?

At the end of the road that is comprised of our choices, all of the forks in the road where we turned right instead of left or left instead of right, will we look back and consider our socially-accepted accomplishments? Will a cold chair behind a big desk fulfill us, or will answering the call of a child’s wildest fantasy be more precious?

I have been feeling cut down since moving here because I have struggled to find a “professional” job – a typical 9 to 5 with holidays and weekends free. I still struggle with feeling inadequate, despite all of the logical arguments stacked up against those feelings. It is not pressure from the outside; it is my own mind at work behind the scenes, sabotaging any feeling of accomplishment.

Here’s the thing: for as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted a PhD. Maybe it’s for bragging rights, or maybe it’s just because it was always instilled in me that I was smart enough to get one. I have the freedom right now to pursue that dream, thanks to my inability to land a “typical” job. And I can do it the old-fashioned way (reasonably speaking; I can’t just haul off to New York or anything) right now.

But wouldn’t you know, that’s not good enough? In my dastardly mind, I keep thinking about how reckless it is! I am writing this to clear my conscience, to tell myself that if I want to go for it, I need to just go for it. I need to not hold myself back.

I went through the fire academy in Georgia! How is going back for more school, when I can afford the time and money it will take, more reckless than that?! It’s absurd the things that we (humans) get nervous about or hung-up over. I feel silly even writing that I am afraid to take a leap of faith and apply to graduate school.

If I want it, I need to just pursue it however I can. And any argument I make against that is just ridiculous. I hope this post will serve as a reminder to me.

</waxing philosophic>