T: Amazing Husband ST: Three-year-old Wonder Prof. G: Advisor I Prof. C: Advisor II Julie: Stylish Sister Rob: Awesome Brother Belle: Our Cat Bill: Grumbling BIL Rita: Uncomplicated SIL SMU: Smallish Midwestern University Doctoral University: where I got my Ph.D.
Drop Me A Line
academeblog AT gmail.com
Quote of the Day
Saturday, August 12, 2006
We have really gotten to know our neighbors to the left of us quickly, since they have children who eagerly wait to play with ST every day. They are wonderful people: she (Darcy) is a stay-at-home mom, and he (Luke) is a physician. They are about ten years older than we are. I've chatted with them every day this week for several hours each time, and they've been a tremendous help to us as we get to know our new city.
Darcy and Luke are very interested in what I do and have asked all sorts of questions about my work. Luke knows a few of my colleagues, since the medical group he works for is in the provider network for our university health insurance. Darcy and I were talking yesterday and she said, "Luke was so excited to meet you because he said it was nice to meet an academic who was normal." I laughed at this because I know that academics are a pretty eccentric group, but I keep thinking about that comment.
Sometimes I wonder if I'm too "normal" to be an academic at all. I really like what I do, I like to teach and like to research, and I think I'm pretty decent at both. But I'm definitely not one of those academic-work-is-everything types, and I never will be. My family and my life outside of the university will always come first. Luke said that a lot of his female patients are academics, and none of them have children. He said they're married to their research. That's just not who I am and not who I want to be. My research is interesting, sure, but it's nothing compared to the adventure of raising a child or two, and it certainly won't have the same impact that sending a well-adjusted child out into the world will.
"Normal." I suppose that's a compliment. I just hope that "normal" (and add to that "happy" and "content at last") will serve me well as I begin chugging along the tenure track.