Mrs. Geek and I paid a visit to her sorority's annual alumnae Christmas party on Sunday night. It was held in the same venerable, beautiful location as last year. Plus, a number of the other attendees were either invited and/or were present at our wedding last June... which made it much more relaxing for me to see some familar names and faces in the room.
There was a certain point during the evening when I found myself thinking a lot about a Christmas party I attended about almost four years ago. At that time, I was newly out of the academic coccoon and feeling a little lost. I hadn't yet "gotten a life" after graduate school. I was making a good stab at it with my girlfriend at the time (who brought me to the party) but I still felt a little out place in the more adult, professional setting. True, my Ph.D. guaranteed me an immediate sense of social equality and acceptance with the other degreed professionals (medical doctors, MBAs, lawyers) in the room... but I didn't feel like I really had anything to say or stories to tell that would interest these people. It was as if all the space in my brain formerly taken up by dissertation earlier in the year was suddenly empty and nothing else had happened yet to fill the void.
I noticed this particularly when I was hanging out in the kitchen and trying to select a friendly vintage for my wine glass. That lead to some friendly banter about different wines with some older gentlemen also in attendance, some discussion of locally produced gin and whiskey, and the retelling of some old tales of making vodka in my dorm room at college to some "active" sorority members (i.e. 21 year olds going to a local University) in attendance.
In comparing the two Christmas party experiences, I realized how much more comfortable I felt in my own skin; I am really living a life I enjoy now. I feel more whole. A transformation is now complete... though there is always transformation going on in every life.
on 2004-12-21 at 4:12 p.m.
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