You thought I was going to talk about gender roles, didn't you? :) No, I'm going to talk about submitting my dissertation.

(This photo of my workspace was taken in December, hence the Christmas tree... Picture it with no tree and waaaaay more library books).

Tonight at 11:30 pm (which still counts as Friday!) I emailed my adviser a draft of my entire dissertation. His review will determine whether I defend in April or this summer (but I really think/hope it will be April!).

I have been working around the clock on it the last several weeks. Many of my colleagues at this stage say they accomplish more on their dissertation in a day than they did in a week earlier in the process, and that's been true for me. I know where it's all going, it's just a matter of tying it up neatly. It's amazing that I have written so many pages on an original topic from original research. I'm not bragging, I'm just proud of myself. It's 230 pages of blood, sweat, and tears. Mostly tears, if you ask Eric. ;)

So this is the first big step of the end. There will be another adviser review, a committee review, a defense, and a dean's review. That's a lot of reviews! But I am a proponent in life of celebrating every step, marking moments, and acknowledging all the hard work it's taken to get to a certain point.

It has not been an easy week. I'm sleep deprived, having worked til around 3 in the morning most days. And I haven't felt well, as I've been staving off a cold and suffering some allergies. Eric has been awesome - he's done my portion of the housework (we divide evenly on normal weeks, so picking up my entire share was a lot on top of him finishing up school before spring break), watched a movie he had no interest in b/c it made me laugh, gave me a foot rub, prepared dinner every night, ran errands, helped me fix sentences that just weren't working, and in general tried to relieve every stress he could for me. He's such an amazing partner. And I've received lots of other support, too.

Tonight, I had pretty severe nausea and some shooting stomach pains - mostly anxiety, I think, but probably also related to the lack of sleep and lack of quality nutrition. Just before I had my review draft ready to email to my professor, the internet went out in our house. Of course it did.

So I packed up my laptop and we headed to a wine bar down the street, the closest place open with wi-fi. And we got champagne (well, Cava actually) to celebrate. Like I said, it's important to commemorate every step.

I've got a few days to relax before I get back to it. I've got more library dives and revisions and meetings and loose ends. I liken this stage to the last few miles of a marathon... You know, the part where the body gives out and your adrenaline takes over to enable you to finish.

But I'm almost there...

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Saba said...

Hoorah - almost there!

nicholas cox said...

Congratulations. Ive seen the hard work along the way, so quit being anxious!

Abby Buchanan said...

WOW! So proud of you! This is a such an important moment.

GibsonGirl99 said...

Congratulations! We will cross our finger for April, too!

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