Whelp, here we are. Farther along than I thought I’d be. Not as far as I thought I’d be. Making the most of my time. Biding my time.

You’re not a horrible person. But you were pretty fucking toxic to me and I’m going to stay away now. Your blazer and hugs and small talk mean nothing.

But I was up all night thinking about it.

And so I stayed because of you. But I’ll be leaving because of me. Self-love really is the greatest middle finger.

But to move forward I also have to grieve. I tell my heart, “Grieve, damnit.”

Two interviews and an apartment that might hold all the belongings I took from my childhood home. Here. We. Go.

When I think about the imposter syndrome, I try my best to shake off those feelings. When I talk about the imposter syndrome–even to the women in my life that I look up to and admire–they merely nod knowingly.

I keep running the numbers through my head to try to solidify my shaky confidence. 18 in 33 students. 1 in 6 neuro students. 3.9 GPA. 6 solid references from people who actually like working with me… 2 from school, 2 from postdoc, 2 from my current job.

“18, 33, 1, 6, 3.9, 6…2 and 2 and 2”

Objectively, I can see the “success.” So why am I still so. damn. scared.

I think of tree lined streets and brick and trolleys… lakes and pine trees… the way the evening sun looks so different from the morning sun. But it is the same star… I’m the one who has changed.


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