Today marks the last week before my dissertation deadline. It’s been through the rounds of one dedicated editor (Hi, Mom!) and I’m about to place it in the hands of a second: my partner. I’m bashful enough as it is when it comes to sharing my creative writing, and academic writing triggers even greater anxiety. Always the fear that I’m not good enough, or worse, that I’m not actually saying anything; that my work has no point. Time off from university and time spent ‘unschooling’ myself from various institutionalized rules of writing has made me even more tentative. One note from my supervisor read ‘not a sentence’, causing me to cringe. (I still think it was a sentence, but that’s just my opinion.) I think often about people who throw their hands up in resignation and frustration–that’s not what I plan on doing, but I understand. Five months on, this dissertation still doesn’t feel complete. The more I try to simplify, the more it sprouts, parthogenetically, and continues to stretch in multitudinous directions.
In other news, I’m employed! This has wiped away so many niggling doubts and fears in the past week, leaving behind an incredible sense of calm. I’m tired, yes, but I can rest slightly easier knowing that the big black cloud that glares back at me from September 6th (the day after my dissertation’s deadline) has gone. With my first paycheck I have promised myself a haircut (as it’s now been nearly six months), but other that I look forward to paying council tax and the electric bill and maybe, just maybe, restocking the wine cabinet with cheap but good wine for autumnal nights spent playing dominoes.
Life is good.