Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Beware of the Swear Words!

Question: What would make these last two of major dissertation writing just that much more difficult?

Answer:  The fuckin' flu!
I know I had a lot of enthusiasm last week that I would be able to finish the major writing on a strong note (remember the "I can see light at the end of the tunnel?" business?).  Well, I am thinking some stupid semi just pulled up ahead and it is blocking the gosh darn light!  Just to help me work out what is making me feel stressed, here is a list of "problems" I am encountering this week:

1.  The before-mentioned flu.  I guess I caught it from Jim (who has had a bad time of it for a week+) and this has completely interrupted my sleeping, my ability to breath, and my head.  Fuck the flu.

2.  End-of-the-semester Research Projects in my ENG 102 classes.  I have never taught four sections of ENG 102 (and might I add, four very full sections of 102) and I am beginning to understand why this was not the best idea in terms of scheduling.  In my books, ENG 102 is harder than ENG 101 (for both the student and the instructor).  There is a heck of a lot of "mind work" with assessing how students are artfully creating research discussions and you have to read it using 100% of your mind (at least to do it well).  Being this on for 80+ students at the moment is a little hard.

3.  Dissertation Girl is starting to hate her project.  I hope this is normal.  I am pretty much "done" -- as of this afternoon -- with Chapters 1-5.  Now I have to shape and mold all the notes I have for Chapter 6 (the conclusion!).  I know there are some problems with some of the sections in the first five chapters but fuck it.  This perfectionism thing is dragging me down right now.  I am willing to settle for okay (at least, for now!).

4.  My own stupidity.  Related to #3, what is up with me using sources in any of my dissertation chapters and I for some freakin' reason didn't add the source to my ever-evolving Works Cited "chapter"?  This means, of course, that I am wasting huge amounts of time tracking down sources that I should have already noted.  Grow a brain, Dianna!

5.  Other obligations.  Our family this year decided to buy gifts for a family we adopted instead of buying gifts for each other.  By next Friday, I have to deliver all the items to the case worker for the family we adopted under the "100 Neediest Cases."  Jim and I just bought the items for the mom (who we "adopted") but I haven't wrapped them (do we even have wrapping paper?).  So now I have to connect up with Jim's sisters and mother and try to collect everything together and make the delivery.  I know this is the best possible "gift" that we could have given ourselves for Christmas, but is it bad that there is a small part of me that wishes I were getting gifts for Christmas instead of doing this family adoption?  (OK, even typing that out makes me feel selfish but it's probably because something that wasn't supposed to be a "burden" is beginning to feel like a burden).

6.  No exercise the last week or so because of #1.  I recognize this makes me grumpy.  Fuck it.

OK, I think I am done (and hopefully, done with saying "Fuck it" every three minutes!).  I am just bummed (mostly) that I got sick during the one time in my life that I can't get sick -- right now!  Just the thought of thinking I could be done with this dissertation was so tempting to believe last week -- now it feels a little bit further away.  However -- the show will go on!  I just have to do three things by next week:

1.  Finish the conclusion
2.  Make sure my in-text sources line up with my Works Cited
3.  Do some amount of proofreading and editing so Dr M at least understands my overall point.

I can do this, right?  Just one more shove of energy?


  1. Hang in there! Just remember... it's 'just' the flu.... You've beaten much worse :-)

    1. Good point! I am even feeling a wee bit better today! So thank you for the reminder!