I read several articles during my time as a PhD student about “impostor syndrome.” Evidently it’s a common frame of mind for PhD students; especially female PhD students. I was no exception. Basically it’s the sense that you don’t actually belong, you’re not actually good enough, and it’s just a matter of time before everyone figures it out. I feel this way…all the time. About everything. My teaching. My research. My parenting. Everything.
It’s not exactly the most mentally healthy state to be in.
And at present, it’s not so much that I feel like I’m an impostor – it’s more that it hasn’t fully sunk in. We’re halfway through the term, more or less, and it still feels more like I’m playing at being a professor. It astounds me on a near daily basis to remember…this is it. This is the real deal. I did it. I AM a professor.
It’s just weird still. I find myself often in disbelief. Not like the, awe, so amazed, cannot believe it’s happening to me kind. More like the, huh…so…I did it? I’m really doing this? And I’m getting paid to do this? And this is my job? I have a real job? After all these years of a school…a REAL job? With benefits and everything? Amazing.