Thursday, May 24, 2012

Rejection Apathy

So, I've been rejected from the last two academic jobs I've applied to within the span of 48 hours. It's been a week, if you want to count all three. Well, I haven't actually been rejected by the third but the jobs wiki says the offer has been made for that job (then rejected and made to someone else). That was the one where they addressed me by the wrong name after interviewing me. Incidentally, the second one essentially said "We don't want you. Go look somewhere else." It was a very brusque three sentences.

Here's the thing: I don't care. I thought I would, at least a little, but I don't. Not at all. Literally, not a thing. I cared about as much as if some distant acquaintance was telling me that ze had decided to change hir shirt from blue to green because ze "just wasn't feeling it, ya know."

I thought I liked the work: teaching and research. I was good at it. If I did like it that much, surely I would care if I didn't get the job. Nope, nothing. Maybe I didn't like it as much as I thought. Maybe all the time I've spent imagining myself in some other job has paid some sort of dividends here. I don't know. I'm more stunned by the apathy than the rejection. It's not even numbness. I read the rejection and my brain just went "meh" and started thinking about how much bubble wrap I needed to buy to move my apartment.

I'm hoping this means I'm through most of the mourning period for leaving academia. Sure, there will likely be more down days to come. However, I'm much more excited about what my next adventure will be (and thankfully I have friends who phrase it that way!). I'm holding off on job hunting until I know where my better half will get a full time job, since he actually has a career.

I just want to give a shout-out to my Better Half. He's a career changer himself, three times over. He's been in and out of academia. He gets it. He doesn't press me about jobs or what I'm going to do next. He'll ask my advice on research design or quantitative analysis then go back to his work and I go back to running amok in the kitchen and reading books. I don't know if I'm as lucky as Currer in this regard but I ain't complaining.

In other news, I just got myself a kit to make my own hand-sewn hardcover book. Hmm, maybe I'll take up antique book repair. I'll keep y'all up to date on where this craziness will end next. Good luck to all those who are currently interviewing for your next adventure!


Currer Bell said...

So glad to hear rejection isn't getting you down! Yay!

I see that Optimism Bias rebuilding already :)

anthea said...

I second Currer Bell's comment. I'm glad to hear that rejection isn't getting you down. Ahh the Optimism Bias. Yes, it does seem to be rebuilding. :-)

JC said...

Heh. This reminds me of when I swung by my departmental office last summer to pick up my remaining mail. There were about 10 rejection letters in there ... and my reaction was the same as yours. "Meh."

I'm glad you're taking it in stride. Just keep remembering that it's the system that's broken ... not you. :)

Good luck and happy moving!

Pi said...

Thanks for all the happy thoughts!

I figure if academia doesn't want me, that's its loss, not mine. :)

Good luck to all of you too in your next moves!