Perceptions are a funny thing. And if I had a dollar for every time I'd been distrustful of my own reading of a situation, I'd be...well, I'd have a bit of money. But today I am firm in my opinion. It's a pretty significant day for me. I taught my last tutorials. I am no longer teaching and, in many ways, this signifies the end of my almost-decade-long pursuit of an academic career. I won't bore you with the whys and why-nots of this pursuit or with my view on the current state of academia. But, this year, I just realised that enough was enough. It wasn't going to happen and it was time to look at the whole career/job/profession/what-am-I-doing question from a new perspective. It is sad in a sense that things haven't panned out as I thought they would. But I also feel just a little bit excited. Out on my own. Gotta work it out. No more grand plan to plod along with. If it's going to be, it's up to me, as they say.
A colleague accused me today of having a 'defeatist' attitude, of being negative for 'letting go of my dream'. I was suprised how two such different perspectives could be read into the same situation. Am I being defeatist? From my perspective, I gave it damn good shot. But now, a new perspective is in order. Wish me luck :)
Above some impressions as I 'left the building' for the last time. Like all universities, stairs, stairs, nothing but stairs...but look closely: an exit! And a shelf from a section of the library I got to know very well (and very happily) while writing my thesis.