Author Topic: Walking away from a good thing (ie. security of career or security of a family)  (Read 3113 times)

TooSoon

  • Guest
Hi all - thank you for all of your responses.  They really do mean the world to me.  It can feel very lonely to have to think these things through, acknowledging your choices and then seeing how you're just not quite there yet no matter how careful you've been.  And then knowing still more choices - maybe the biggest ones yet.  Your stories matter to me.  Thank you for sharing them.  We're still in limbo and will be for some time but I think I see much more clearly what I will need moving forward and that clarity comes in no small measure from all of you opening your hearts.  I may never meet every one of you but I love you. 

I've never doubted my choice to be with Andy.  Not once.  It is logistics for us and logistics alone.  Thank you all for understanding and listening.

PS - I am sure I'll be back asking for more advice one day soon. 

arneal

  • Member
  • Posts: 714
    • The Starving Activist
We are here for you!
Andree'

Seek peace, and pursue it - Psalm 34:14b

MrsDan

  • Member
  • Posts: 471



 trust that you can recover even if you make a mistake.



I just wanted to point out the immense wisdom in this statement.
You are the Bear of my heart dear,
And nothing can take that away.

TooSoon

  • Guest
Hi everyone,

I have been avidly reading all of your generous responses, all of which I appreciate more than you can possibly know.  I've also been waiting to see if we hear anything from them this week but so far, nothing.  So I'm still waiting and thinking things over.   My thinking is much clearer now, though, thanks to all of you!  Thank you!  I'm sure you'll be hearing from me again.... :)

TooSoon

  • Guest
Well, here's where things stand.  Not sure anyone is eager for an update but I'm going to provide one anyway....

The committee that interviewed me - preliminary, skype interview - is not meeting until February 3 to short list candidates for the position of art department chairperson.  Three weeks from today.  A month and a half after that preliminary interview (maddening!).  But Andy and I have decided to take the plunge and do it on the condition that they come up with a position for me that is, if not art department chairperson, then a position with tenure and an academic calendar.  I'm willing to take a hit on salary but not on the security I've built.  So they will either hire me in the position I applied for or create one that meets these criteria.   To many of you this all might sound very strange but it is common in higher education, especially for midcareer people and for schools in locations like this one that have trouble recruiting and maintaining the kind of faculty they want (an unhappy marriage = an unhappy faculty member). 

Wow.  Here we go.  It isn't what I envisioned but it is ours, its what we've been trying so carefully to do for the last two years.  We can live in a metro area with fantastic public schools for my daughter.  It is affordable.  It is a good school.  I found a middle eastern grocery store and a vegan restaurant in a neighborhood that is affordable.  We can make it work!  I'm optimistic!

As I've gone through the stages of thinking this whole thing through - and there have been many - what pushed me over the line ultimately was that Andy and I are both still in the houses we shared with our spouses.  Where we lived with them, where we cared for them and where they died.  I think we both feel like it is time for us as individuals but also as a family to be free from the past, to have something now that is uniquely our own.  No contracts have been signed, no houses sold, no resignations made but as of today I am nearly 100% sure we're doing this. 

Thank you all for sharing your stories and thoughts with me.  I needed to hear it all in order to sort it out in my own head.  Thank you, thank you.  As ever, I'm sure this won't be my last post on this topic, especially as M's grandparents don't yet know this is happening and I'm pretty sure they'd prefer to keep us right where we  are at just a couple of miles away....

arneal

  • Member
  • Posts: 714
    • The Starving Activist
From one academic to another, I am thrilled for you on all fronts, TS! I hope you'll keep updating as I certainly appreciate following the faculty journeys of my colleagues. When my LH got sick and after my last full-time administrative faculty contract ended, I threw security out the window. I have never been in a tenured position, which has its plusses and minuses as I am sure you know. I like the freedom of being out of the publish/research or perish thing but would love some medical benefits :) I teach in master's and doctoral programs online, which allowed me to be a caregiver and still earn. I soon came to appreciate that free schedule as it has allowed me to gain better health through going to the gym as well as general mental health (I can pop up and go shopping if I feel like it) :)
As far as you and your NG, go for it. My NG has been talking about moving closer this way (he lives west of me but works farther to the east) and I wonder if he is hinting about moving or buying a house to see what I'll say. So far, I haven't said much but it's pressing on me. I have been thinking of offering my available space for storage if he needs it in the meantime to see what he'll say; I of course would be open to him moving here :)
Andree'

Seek peace, and pursue it - Psalm 34:14b

mmg19

  • Member
  • Posts: 323
I was eager to read your update.  Your writing is so descriptive and all encompassing that I could visualize the thought processes you and Andy were going through.  Sounds like a good plan and a new beginning for your family.

Now to enjoy the waiting game, she said facetiously.  Best wishes.

TooSoon

  • Guest
Andy and I have been trying to put all of the pieces together - our two academic jobs and our three children - together for more than two years.  Hard to believe we "met" on the old board more than three years ago.  Its time for us to start our own life - not independent of the past but one that is finally ours.  Lots of people here know our whole long story.  I'm not thrilled about leaving the east coast but I am so sick of my job in an educational system that I believe is a sinking ship.  I don't want to sink with it so this is a professional risk I am willing to take.  But I need to carry the security of tenure and an academic calendar with me.  I figure if tragedy strikes again, there are ways to make additional money but there is no way to guarantee benefits and a base-line salary for my daughter, myself and Andy's children if they need me.  Work like crazy, hope for the best and prepare for the worst.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2017, 08:20:06 AM by TooSoon »

momtokam

  • Member
  • Posts: 554
  • Widowed September 2012
I hope this goes exactly as you hope for TS.
It's been a long time coming and you all deserve this.
Many hugs!

Trying

  • Member
  • Posts: 1646
  • aka MissingmyTim
I'm glad you have made a decision, that in it's self must be a relief.  I wish you nothing but happiness going forward. 
You will forever be my always.

RobFTC

  • Member
  • Posts: 458
  • Lost Michelle to ovarian cancer 2010/11/07
    • Celtic Journeys radio show
TooSoon, you know I'm rooting for you.  In a way, it wasn't until Michelle and I cleaved from our friends and moved to a new place that our relationship really gelled into the great partnership-on-all-levels we were known for.  Being in new life we were building together, with only each other to lean on, was a lot of work, but for a great result.  There are other ways, but it's fun to look back on.  I hope you get your position as desired!

Take care,
Rob T
There was something fishy about the butler.  I think he was a Pisces, probably working for scale.

canadiangirl

  • Member
  • Posts: 438
Sending added support.  I read your original post and had a long response worked out but then others weighed in saying pretty much what was in my head (only articulating it way better).  Love Mizpah's snail analogy. I agree with Rob, it might be exactly what is needed. And I come from the opposite situation- my DH moved across the country to be with me but it was incredibly difficult because we were in my context, in my identity, and he never felt at ease.  Starting fresh somewhere new to both seems perfect.  I am so glad you are dealing with this (potential income disparity, loss of security etc.) with such clarity as this of course is the type of situation that can lead to resentment.  Totally agree to trust your instincts!  Not surprised at all that the search is still ongoing and is into Feb. -having once been involved in a Canadian university search committee, it took many months, like a lot of public sector hiring here!  I hope you get the job or something you can work with--and what I was going to say is that having a partner with some measure of job/income stability still can open doors so you can pursue your passions WITHOUT the fetter of being the sole provider, planning for the future notwithstanding.  I don't think that compromises one's feminist credibility or values, and in fact I long for this measure of economic security (which I do not have) to change careers (which I therefore cannot do).  Reading these boards I feel like I am not alone in experiencing loss of spouse at the same time as mid-life crisis (oh joy).  Wishing you all the very best, so glad to read these updates.  ETA -and glad you are leaving that institution that has consistently undervalued your contribution.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2017, 07:18:20 AM by canadiangirl »

trying2breathe

  • Member
  • Posts: 401
  • Widowed August 2013
Best wishes to you on getting the new position and moving forward!
Have I told you lately how much I love you?

Sugarbell

  • Member
  • Posts: 769
Moving to the West Coast??? Gooooooooooooooo!!!!!

Glad it's all coming together for you guys. I mean if you were moving someplace in Appalachia I would tell you to think long and hard about it (that's why I said it was dependent on where it was)--

Happy for you!!
B.W.H. 9/24/2007

imissdow

  • Member
  • Posts: 237
I'm excited for all of you. My dad was a college prof and I remenber his job searches and such. We moved several times. It's tough but I think it will be good for all of you! 
I sold my house almost a year ago now. It was horridly hard to leave the place I had met ,married, raised my youngest and then lost my LH.   However looking back it was also one of the best things I could have done. My memory's came with me but I no longer look around and visualize him in every room.  It took quite awhile for me to feel at home in my new place and there are still days I miss my old house. However my heart feels lighter and I've made some new friends along the way.
You ,Andy and the kids will have a great new start! Happy for everyone!