I'm really excited to be starting back to school, and I've been reading and thinking and doing, and it's not even the end of the second week. I'm no longer working at my old job; instead, my job now is to learn and think and write and research. And I'm beyond happy.
I got a desk in an office, and I like my officemates. I've already had discussions about Orientalism, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, cultural misunderstandings, and teaching techniques. I've been learning about classical rhetoric (so fascinating!), how to teach freshman composition (also really interesting!), and feminist theory (I'm liking this one a lot too). It's all really interesting, and even though I may be working longer days than eight-to-five, it flies by. I come home energized, telling Lance all about Bahktin and his dialogical theories and how neat rhetorical theory is.
If I had any doubt that I was meant to be an academic, it was erased during the first week as the joy of being in school washed through me. But it's not just about being in school; no, it's about being in the position to focus solely on academic pursuits. My work ties into my studies. I'm tutoring in the writing center, which is in line with my interests in teaching and researching pedagogy. The projects that I'm working on for my adviser also tie into those interests. Working full-time while going to school was difficult, and though I was lucky to be able to get into a good place financially before starting a Ph.D. program, I know I missed so much during my MA program by not being a full-time student. This time, it's for real. I'm a student all the way, and I'm fully immersing myself in the culture of academia and the mindset of being a scholar.