This week I've been taking some time to slow down and have a life again - after just writing the last round of final class papers for my graduate program - EVER!
Tomorrow I have to go pick up questions for my comprehensive exam, then pick one question and write a 15 page paper on it over the next 7 days. Really, it shouldn't be that hard. I've written more 15 page papers than I care to remember. Mentally preparing for the next week is the hardest part - because at this point... how do I say this delicately? I DON'T CARE!
Did I just say that?
I've tried to care. Okay, I do care a little or I'd just pack up and hit the trail instead. But I've hit that point where it's not coming naturally and I have to summon any internal strength to tackle this.
Preparing for the last leg of writing (before writing a dissertation) has been about clearing out my head and clearing out space in our apartment so I feel lighter. It's been about taking old edited drafts of papers to the recycling bin. It's also been about spending a little extra time out in the woods, walking off any dismal feelings.
Yesterday it was about meeting up with the friend who has gotten me through all the tribulations of graduate school to sit in the sun and get a pep talk. It was about buying ourselves flowers. Flowers that reminded me of my wedding.
It's been about packing up long overdue presents I haven't gotten out to family and friends because my head's been buried in online journal articles. It's been about cleaning out the fridge. It's been about going to the library and getting two fun books - one about the history of scrapbooking and one about celebrating through food - to sit and flip through and barely read. It's been about making plans to skip town multiple times in June.
I'm hoping to knock this paper out of the park. I'm hoping to get it done hours before it's due next Thursday so I can go out to lunch with that friend instead of spending the afternoon editing citations. I'm hoping the ideas will come to me and the words will flow from my head to the keyboard and onto the screen. I'm hoping my computer does not play any tricks on me. I hope I can be peaceful during the process - not anguished.
I really hope I don't cry. I'd like to make it through comps without tears. That would be lovely.
Better days are on the horizon and soon this whole experience will nothing but a bittersweet memory. Bitter because - well, it's graduate school so that's self-explanatory. And sweet because I've found some new strength and friendships through the process. And because I will be done!
(Except for that pesky dissertation - but that's another story.)
The end of May and June is going to be busy with lots of trips. We're heading to Maryland, Vermont, New York City, and Portland, Oregon (hopefully Matt too and not just me). Not sure how that all got smashed into one month, but it did. I'm going to try to pop in with some travel posts. But, I'm also itching to tackle my long list of craft projects and share some of that here.
So I've been wondering, what do you want to see more of here? What posts do you look forward to? If you're a return visitor, what keeps you coming back (other than being related to me)?