Friday, January 27, 2012

five-sense Friday

This week I've been...

hearing: dissertation

smelling: dissertation

tasting: dissertation

seeing: dissertation

feeling: dissertation

But really, it's been an intense week. My goal was to have the thing finished and mailed off by Tuesday, and I met that goal. I didn't pull any all-nighters, either. You'd think a two-year project would leave plenty of time for tweaking at the end, but the impossibility of ever really summing it up, doing it justice, left me writing and rewriting the introduction and the conclusion until the very end. Thank goodness for deadlines, really. Honestly, the moment I set the defense date (and knew the manuscript was due a month before that date), I felt a mingled sense of panic and immense relief. Knowing that I was working within certain concrete limitations gave me a sense of real freedom. It couldn't be perfect. It needed to be as good as it could be within those limitations.

I printed a copy on Tuesday (see above) and walked it to the post office with pride and mailed it off. I talked to my baby brother on the way there and my mom on the way back. The snow was melting and slushy underfoot, and the sky cleared up to a gorgeous blue as I walked. It weighed more than three and a half pounds, that pile of pages representing two years of my life. Walking out of the post office after sending it off I felt strangely bereft. I walked home and made myself a cup of tea.

Since then I have been formatting to grad school standards for printing and binding, cleaning my apartment, printing and mailing more copies for other committee members (after buying more paper and ink!), walking to the library, walking to the hardware store, reading Silence, cooking proper dinners, communicating with schools about interviews, dreaming of possible futures. Josh and I watched Wild Target. We played Boggle. This life of leisure, I'm not sure what to make of it. I think I'll probably mop the floors today. Tomorrow we might go out for coffee and pastries.

1 comment:

  1. Bereft is such an appropriate word to explain the feeling of finishing something, letting it go.

    I like your creative use of form this week. :)