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Goodbye past

Sep. 28th, 2012 | 02:36 pm

Life is about to change. I know this, and I'm getting to the point where I'm ready to wrap up the past and rubber stamp it as complete. Today I finally finished writing a journal article based on my thesis. I've had confirmation of graduation, so this was the last task before letting go of that one. This time last week I was teaching my last class, not only for the term, but for forever, at my old work place. I will never have to go back there in a work capacity again. I will probably visit and catch up with people who work there still, I may even go to the Christmas party if I get an invitation, but those seven years are now completed.

In 11 days I go in to hospital. From there, I have no concept of what the future will hold.

Two weeks ago I said goodbye to my Nan, who passed away at age 99. I'm feeling echoes of that now. It's the ending of an era that has made me who I am. The difference is that I miss Nan and I'm glad to let go of everything else. I'm ready to embrace the future personified.

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A break in the schedule.

Jul. 2nd, 2012 | 11:50 am

I am now finally on holidays. It seems like it has been a long time coming. By Friday afternoon I'd leached all the reserves and was beyond doing much but lying listlessly on the couch and occassionally bursting into tears. Today seems better, helped by sleeping till midday on Sunday. I'm counting the weeks till maternity leave kicks in and I can start the new chapter of my life, wherein I don't have to deal with the work issues that seem so unbearable.

I know work isn't as bad as I imagine it to be, or rather, I tell myself that I'm exaggerating things. That doesn't have any tangible effect on my physical/emotional reaction though. I think seven years in any workplace probably takes its toll. I was ready a year and a half ago to move on and find something with new challenges. I'm not made to stagnate. On the other hand, things really are wrong. I find it very difficult to have respect for the people I work with who I perceive to be less than competent. Three months ago I was drafting a letter explaining that I felt I couldn't have a productive work relationship without some form of intervention. The intervention happened, but it didn't change anything except my decreasing investment in what I'll leave behind. I used to care about my 'legacy'. I wanted to think that I could have the programs I've set up be robust enough to continue without me and have my name occassionally remembered as that awesome teacher who gave lots to the school. Now I'll be happy if I leave my desk tidy and dissappear quietly into the night. I remember reading Steven Covey where he talks about what people will say at your funeral. I used to imagine what people would say at my farewell at the end of term. I now imagine it as "the following people won't be back next term." Really ready not to be there anymore. At most 10 weeks to go.

I'm looking forward to using this break to clean out my house. I have teasingly described it as 'nesting', but really, it's a practicality thing. Our house is full of stuff, there's no room for another person. I need to purge. I'm starting with the bedroom today. The only room I won't touch is morsla's space (the future baby room). That has too much to tackle in two weeks and still have time for anything else, and is sacrosanct until the PhD is substantially done. I see that as a September task.

On the topic of thesis', mine is almost done. My supervisor has given me the go ahead to get my final copies printed. This has been hanging over my head for too long and while I'm not ready to celebrate until it's submitted, I am feeling relieved.

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Pouring of thoughts

Jan. 30th, 2012 | 06:36 pm

I have a lot to write about right now. It has been an amazingly busy couple of days. First, of course, I submitted my three thesis copies to the uni today. In fact it was just over two hours ago. I’m still not sure how I feel about that. We’re calling it anxphoria. I’m full of agitation, and I’m not sure if it’s good or bad. There’s relief, too. I don’t have to do anything about it for the next couple of weeks.

I’m very tired after Arcanacon, but I have lots to say about it. Not least, I had an awesome time. I’m going to put the rest of it under a cut. Read more...Collapse )

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Jan. 23rd, 2012 | 02:22 pm

I need to share my frustration. This bit of thesis writing is very boring. I'm going through and making sure I'm being explicit about where my data came from and how many people said stuff. So dull. I will be extremely glad when this is handed in. I'm very impressed that people manage to get past the crash that comes after the euphoria of having something almost finished and actually finish. I will be very impressed with me, too, when I have done it.

Also, auto updating contents and references is amazing! I love Zotero!

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Mark this moment.

Jan. 20th, 2012 | 02:03 pm
mood: ecstaticecstatic

As of now I theoretically have a finished thesis. Everything is in words I like, every section is done, and it's under the word count. Alright, sort of, I'm taking the extra 10% when I say that. I've got approximately 17,350 words.
Now I just need my supervisor to send through any changes, my in house editor to go through it, to sort out the extra bits like my bibliography and I'm going to be able to submit it.

HAPPY DANCE! (and no, it's not preemptive)

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Holidays are for working

Jan. 6th, 2012 | 04:57 pm
mood: productiveproductive

This has been an excellent week for my thesis. All year I've been waiting for January to come around so that I'd finally have time to properly sit down and sort it all out. I'm very glad I've done all the prep before now, but it finally feels like I'm working. Every day this week I've got out of bed kind of late (compared to 6:50 on not holidays) and have been at the computer by 11:30, because I've stopped to watch the French news. I work all day, with a lunch break at about 2 (to watch Robin Hood, it's an affliction) and work through to 5. Then, because I don't have to drive home, I'm left with the rest of the day to do stuff I like, such as make clothes. This concentrated amount of work now means I've finished my methodology chapter and about 3/4 of my literature review. I've even worked out how much work I get done each day to establish a timeline AND left myself weekends free. i should have the whole thing done, barring edits from my supervisor, by the 18th. I wish it was always like this. I need to find a way of working from home and getting paid enough to make it viable, though, which isn't looking likely. Still, I'm feeling very happy with myself.

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Thesis countdown

Nov. 30th, 2011 | 06:22 pm

I'm starting ever so slightly to fall behind. I spent all of today at the computer (9 till 6 with a half hour break for lunch) and I wrote 2,000 words of awesome usable content. However, the section that I was meant to finish today is not even half way done. It will probably end up being close to 5,000 when it is. I need to finish it this weekend, but that means I'm pushing into next week's time when I have to start on an equally long chapter. I have 8 usable days to go before the draft needs to be complete. I keep making mental excuses for the 3,000 of intro and conclusion that I don't think I'll get done.

needed to tell you so I'd feel better.

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Good news, bad news.

Nov. 7th, 2011 | 01:08 pm
mood: workingworking

Sitting at home today. I had not planned to take today off, but when events began to conspire against me it became an increasingly attractive option.

Bad news: I have no car at the moment, it is sick.
Good news: It means I get to stay home and get some work done on my thesis.
Bad news: I have just found out that my supervisor wants my finished thesis in a month's time, which is not going to happen - a draft, maybe, but not finished.
Good news: See above. Also, the dealer took my car back straight away this morning to see what's wrong.
Bad news: The battery in my shiny Prius seems to have died after 5 1/5 years, and not the 8 that was initially estimated.
Good news: They can probably replace it tomorrow, and it's still under warranty, which it wouldn't be had this happened anywhere after six months from now.
Bad news: Not exactly sure when I'll get the car back.
Good news: Tomorrow is my normal day off anyway, so I wouldn't have had to drive anyway.

Neither good nor bad news: this has meant that I'm spending the day trying to wrap my head around using Dedoose. They have mostly useful video tutorials, and I have started to code my data. I'm sure I'm not using the full range of possibilities open to me, and that I'll make a bit of a hatchet job of it, especially given the speed at which I'll have to do it. Masters are not meant to be fantastic, right, as long as I pass well enough to be allowed into a PHD when I want to? I can start getting good at this stuff then. Right now I'd accept competent, or even vaguely aware.

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Aug. 8th, 2011 | 03:46 pm

I'm having a rough day today. I decided not to go to work this morning and I've been alternating between sitting on the couch in tears and feeling like there's nothing really wrong.

I think it's been a while since I took the old mental health day. It's kind of odd. I'm used to being a lot lower than this at the cold, dark part of the year. I've been down, but not as down as expected. I feel like kind of a fraud, because I know 12 months ago, today would have felt like a good day. I'm forgiving myself though, because I figure it's better to be in tune with when I need some space to keep things going rather than letting myself get to the bottom of the black pit before I do anything about it. Here's hoping today will let me get through the next 6 weeks OK.

I used some of today to set up a job search. Part of my current stress is that I don't want to be in the job I'm in anymore. I like the work, but I'm ready for a new environment. It's been six years, so itchy feet are to be expected. That sounds quite glib. There's a lot more to it than that, but it makes me feel better to think that I'm doing something about moving on.

Accomplished teacher of French, English and Eng. Language, looking for good home, comes with excellent track record, an almost completed Masters and lots of enthusiasm.

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Making progress

Jul. 19th, 2011 | 04:00 pm

I've spent the best part of today working on the old lit review. I think I'm finally about two and a half paragraphs of editing away from having a version I'm happy with. I'm sure I'll edit it again before submission, but once I've fixed these paragraphs I'm going to put it away for some months and move onto other bits of writing. It's taken much longer than I would have liked.

Mochason and I are getting along quite well. I have mostly healed all the scratches on my hands (except the new ones I'm sporting from tyeing my shoelaces - that proved too much of a temptation for kitten claws). He's taken to ambushing me around the house, where he lies in wait in a dark corner, waits till I walk by and leaps out in a spread eagle fashion. It's remarkably cute. Now most of my scratches are happening on my knees :)

School holidays are over too. I feel like I didn't really have a holiday as such, but I'm finding I'm a bit out of tune with school. Still readjusting to getting up on time and remembering to plan sufficiently for classes, although the second one isn't my fault because in my new timetable all my spare periods happen on Friday, so if I didn't do it before the holidays, it isn't done. I don't like feeling disorganised.

I'll get there, slowly, slowly.

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