When I started this website four years ago, I was pretty sure my mid-life reinvention would involve literature or medieval history. My concept, was to use this website to discuss books on my way toward a second career in letters. But, as my reinvention evolved, it became clear that my future involves, yes, books, but also dirt and a hard hat.
For reasons gone into elsewhere in this blog (including here and here), I went back to the basics of what I really wanted, and reconnected with a path I’d danced around since childhood: studying the past by digging around in the dirt.
Reflecting that new direction, I made a new website logo, which I’m also using on Instagram and Twitter. It retains the hint of an “M” shape (for mid-life), and still contains a book because books will always be a big part of my life.
I even thought about changing the name of this website and its associated social media accounts to something more archaeo-y but MidLifeLit still works. I mean, how many people do you know in their late 50s who are lit up pursuing a second career? Who went down one path right up to the moment of applying for a master’s program, before haring off in another direction? Who else pivoted their pivot? There are tons of articles about people my age who opted for early retirement, but reinvention makes me happy in a way that retirement wouldn’t, at least right now.
The other bit of fire, is that my reinvention is nearly complete! I just finished all the necessary classes and applied for graduation with an Associate of Arts degree in Anthropology from City College, and I’m two classes away from earning a Certificate in Archaeology. What’s more, I’ve already got a job, working part-time as a CRM archaeological field technician. I’ve been out in the backcountry as part of survey teams. I’ve helped monitor construction projects. And I’ve even been part of correcting the location of a prehistoric feature.
If you’re interested in following my journey in something more like real time, please follow me on Instagram. I’ll continue to use this website for deeper discussions and detours, but my day-to-day stuff is mostly on Insta.
Finally, if you’re interested in changing careers, I say go for it! No matter how much time you’ve spent in one line of work, it hasn’t been wasted; it’ll always be part of what you – and only you – bring to the next one.