It's not just a new year. It's a whole new decade.
Looking back at where I started the century, I was fresh out of graduate school. I was starting a post-doctoral fellowship at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. I had a great boyfriend who lived in another part of the country, but who I talked to daily and saw every couple of months.
In the years that followed, I got engaged, finished the first post-doc, moved to Ohio, did another post-doc with wonderful people, got married, moved to Colorado, had a kid, bought a house, and became a stay-at-home mom.
Did I picture that this is where I'd be? Was this part of the plan? No, not really. Some version of it, sure. But this exactly - not really. I decided that there are things that I'm not good at, and things that I am. I'm trying to follow the things that I am good at, while still being happy and challenging myself. I miss many of the people, and particular parts of my old life in academia, but I know that in the long run I'm better off where I am.
So, what's next? I'm still not sure. I've not got a clear vision of what I want to be when I grow up, but I think that the biggest part of it has to be creative. I spent a huge part of my life in school, pursuing all the academic achievement that I could find. But that meant putting to the side the more artistic side of myself, or finding a way to integrate it into the academics. I failed at the second, and was forced to do the first. I refuse to put it aside any further.
I'm starting the new decade by cleaning up my project room, reorganizing my space and my brain, and deciding what the first project should be. I've got a lot to choose from, both old and new, and I'm looking forward - to the work, to the challenges, and to the new decade.
I look forward to seeing what happens next.