Thanks to everyone who has reached out over the last week. It’s felt completely overwhelming to finally be a PhD, which has been six years in the works, so I’m trying to slow down and give myself space to celebrate a bit.
Those six years have included a cross-country move and learning about whole worlds of thought contained in however many hundreds and hundreds of books I’ve been assigned. Like most students of philosophy and religion, I ended up studying fields very different from what I expected. Those six years included an MA Theology, an MA Philosophy, and learning to translate Greek, Hebrew, German, and French. There were the six months I spent studying for qualifying exams, which was the most challenging thing I've ever done. Two chapters in edited volumes and a few articles in journals. Lots of new cities and new countries and the conference presentations we use to justify traveling to new places. I even got to pretend to do archaeology and see Israel, which I’ve wanted to do all my life. I published my first book, and I finished my second (which will go to print in the spring!) while writing a dissertation in a busy four months. I taught my first few courses with undergraduates. Most of the worst and best experiences of my life have fit inside those six years. I’ve met so many fantastic friends and professors, and I even met one really brilliant girl who dealt with the endless stress of academic life and who was with me when I finally heard the words “Congratulations on acquiring the degree of Doctor of Philosophy!” last week. It’s been overwhelming to reach the end of a long goal, but it has been good.
Oh, and we got a puppy. He's adorable.