Saturday, 21 May, 10:30 AM, I walked the stage and received my diploma. Big day. Biggest day of my life. A large chapter finished that morning and a new, dark, and obscure one began. I have no idea if the author is drunk or sober, but I suspect I'm in for a wild ride.
The facts: five years ago I was in the Boundary Waters, on the way to reclaiming my faith. Several weeks later I would fall to my knees in Smith Hall and vow to spend my life in service to God no matter what I wound up doing. I shortly thereafter abandoned my military aspirations and applied to and was accepted by, St. John's College at Santa Fe, New Mexico. Over the next four years my intellect, mind, and spirit were shaped and transformed to an almost unrecognizable degree. The school year was spent in Santa Fe with a brief excursion in Annapolis; the summers at my second home, HoneyRock Camp. I met men and women there whom I hope to hold as friends for the rest of my life, and my devotion to God increased during those periods in the North. St. John's and HoneyRock; reason and revelation.
To give an overview of even only my intellectual change would be too tedious and exhausting to write, and worthless, since no one could possibly read such a thing, not even me. Suffice it to say I do not have many answers, only that I am beginning to know what the right questions are and how to ask them. I have a love for books that I did not have, and an ability to read and write that I could not have dreamed of possessing in 2007, though even there it is in dire need of improvement. I met good people there too; friends I wish to hold for the rest of my life.
But what now? I am an alumnus of St. John's College, and currently unemployed. I know what I would like to do, and I have written of it here before, but I do not quite know the next step, though I recently discovered something which intrigued me: teaching at a liberal arts charter school in Phoenix, Arizona: Great Hearts Academies. I came away from St. John's a zealot for liberal education. I know what it can do and I have seen what benefit it has provided me and my classmates. I think that teaching the liberal arts is something I would be good at doing, something I would enjoy doing, and best of all, something which would be good for me to do. Great Hearts thus would be a stepping stone; I should still like to attend grad school, and armed with a doctorate, teach at a liberal arts university like Thomas Aquinas College or something like that. Perhaps even my alma mater would be a possibility, but I doubt that.
I applied to Great Hearts (and a number of overseas English teaching positions too), but am still waiting to hear from someone...anyone. Naturally this makes me nervous, for though I have enough money saved to make about a year's worth of student loans, I should very much prefer to find work by September. The alternative career path is still open, but I am beginning to suspect that if indeed I should go there, now is not the right time.
But still - waiting, hoping, unsure.