A week from tomorrow, I will deliver my dissertation to my advisor.
Honestly, I’m eager for that moment. After all these weeks of intense revision sessions, I’m ready to hand the document over and give it some space. I’m proud of the progress I’ve made in the past few months, but frankly, things have only gotten harder the closer I’ve gotten to the finish line.
Somehow, I’m not surprised by that. Impending deadlines – even self-imposed ones – can be excellent stress-inducers. Add to that the fact that the final three chapters of the chapter (aka, the second half of it) required much more intensive work than the first half, and it all means that I have my moments of doubt.
Like this week, when I’ve been struggling with Chapter 6. It’s one of the more important chapters in the project – not that the other chapters don’t matter, because they actually do play a very important part in getting to Chapter 6 – and my brain’s had a hard time wrapping around some stuff.
I feel like I’m revising Chapter 1 all over again, partly because yesterday I had another breakthrough like I had while revising that chapter. After staring at something for years, I finally found my way into it. All of a sudden, after three days of agonizing over my lack of progress with Chapter 6 revisions, something clicked last night around 9:30.
Of course, I’m still working out the particulars, but having that moment of illumination meant that I was finally able to tie together the section of the chapter I’d been working on for most of the week (and struggling with). This means that today I can wrap up that section (3.5 pages left to flesh out) and move into the next section – the final one to tackle.
Slowly but surely, it’s all coming together. And of course, life in other aspects continues: yesterday I submitted my first round of job applications, and as soon as I hand over the dissertation next week I’ll need to get working on more job applications and my two upcoming job applications.
And of course, find some time to breathe.