Surfacing After Silence

Life. After.

academic explanations

what the heart wants . . .

I’ve gotten a lot of questions about my academic status lately, so I thought I’d answer them once and for all in one convenient place.

I am no longer in the PhD program at Mizzou.  While I was in the hospital, I realized something: every time I return to school, I get sick.  My heart either acts up and I get physically sick and exhausted, more so than the average PhD-exhaustion, or the Bipolar Disorder gets the best of me.  I’ve always wanted my PhD, but I value my health more.  I cannot keep taking weeks off of school to go in the hospital or recover from a particularly bad heart spell.  I have my terminal degree for my field: my MFA in Creative Nonfiction Writing.  I can go on the job market now.

So what makes me think I should go on the job market given what I just wrote?  One of the things that the PhD program entailed is taking a full load of classes and teaching two undergraduate courses.  Not being a TA and being a glorified grader, but actually having full control of my own two classes: writing the syllabi, doing the course prep, teaching the courses, writing the assignments and grading the assignments, and meeting with students outside of class as needed.  I can be a student or I can be a teacher.  I cannot be both at the same time.  My heart, literally, will not let me.

I am sure I could push through this and keep forcing myself to go to class and teach my classes and write my papers and all of that.  But I am also sure it would come at a cost, a cost I am not willing to pay.  As I said before, I value my health and would like to maintain my health as much as I can.  It took me a long time to learn that lesson; I’m not turning my back on it now.

So if anyone needs a freelance copy editor, I’m up for hire.


March 8, 2011 - Posted by | Uncategorized

1 Comment »

  1. Wow Alexis, I’m so proud of you, that’s an awesome choice. You know, you can always go back and get your PhD later on in life. One of my friend’s father went on to get 3 PhDs later in life, one of them at 60yrs old. He used to always say that he planned to live to be 100 years old and so he was barely past halfway 🙂 Looking at it that way, you’ve got 70ish more years to get the degree, right?!


    Comment by Amanda G-M | March 15, 2011 | Reply

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