Sunday, May 31, 2009

And so it goes...

I've had little energy for blogging of late. Partly, I'm in a new phase in my life, and I'm not sure where blogging fits in. Partly, it's been a rough patch. But a "rough patch" today hardly qualifies as an irritant in my yesterday. I feel so blessed and lucky to be where I am, that it feels like whining to complain, to delve into concerns, and doubts, and fears. But it's been a few months since I received any income. After an initial shock and joy at receiving a research contract, I've revisited the old familiar territory of Wait-and-See.

Suffice it to say, the rough patch has ended. I am (or soon will be) truly in business. I've gotten an invitation to proceed to the next level with my R&D. Meaning, I will be getting a six-month extension to my initial contract as soon as the paperwork is filed (albeit a few months later) and will shortly enter contract negotiations for another TWO YEARS after that!

And I don't mean just two years of me hanging on, getting by. I mean, come the fall, I will most likely be HIRING two or three full-time employees, paying them not a fortune, but an amount I would have been delighted to receive when I finished my PhD (if I had gotten an Asst. Prof. gig) .

And, since my home office just won't serve for three or four, I'm looking into buying a small office space downtown by the water. It's an amazingly depressed market, but a really lovely downtown, in sight of sailboats in the harbor. One of the reasons we chose this particular city was because it was affordable, by the water, and beautiful. The thought of me being a part of revitalizing the city, my fondest but not quite believable hope when we moved here, is almost beyond words.

I can't express how good this feels, and how I still wonder whether it might not just vanish, a phantom, an image, a dream. But it feels quite real. I got through the first gate. I passed the test. And now, finally, they have decided to push the envelope and invite me to produce a prototype solution to their problem. They had given me six months to prove my concept feasible and, despite bureaucratic delays, they've become convinced that I have succeeded.

And so, I step lightly, but swiftly! There's a lot I have to learn about running a small business, on top of a good deal of work on the research. Wish me luck.