After much painful consideration and hours of thought, I left a PhD program in English. To do what, you ask? To do anything I could find that actually made me happy. You see, it occurred to several relatives (I was a bit slow to catch on), that I was compiling "incompletes" left and right because, perhaps, I did not actually WANT to do my work because it was not actually something that I enjoyed doing anymore. Officially, I took a "leave of absence." I think I took a leave of absense, but I remain unsure as to whether the paperwork has actually been completed, having had no response from various departments who need to sign said paperwork. Whatever their computers say, I no longer go to graduate school.
I did get the point when loving relatives staged a sort of intervention, begging me to find a way to, well, be less miserable, and, what's more, I immediately realized that I was less miserably, nay happy, even, when I was babysitting! Admittedly, I had a really, really hard time accepting this as a new career. I told myself that I was already babysitting part-time, I could do more of it and make money until I "figured it all out." Since then ("then" was early January, by the way) I have become... dare I say it... a happy person! Not only am I happy sometimes, but I am happy most of the time, because I am always doing something that I choose to do! It's miraculous, and I wish everyone in the world had the privilege of feeling this way.
It might be a bubble. It might be a honey-moon period. I might just be ecstatic not to be writing papers anymore or, for that matter, grading papers. Maybe playing with blocks and rocking babies to sleep will lose its luster, and I'll come crashing back to earth. But right now, the baby I am caring for is stirring from her nap, and I am just so happy to be going to pick her up and hold her in my arms!