Rejoice! I submitted my dissertation and received my temporary degree! Yes, that’s right…it’s doctor to you now!
After the hours and hours of agony that it took for me to finish my piece of crap dissertation, it was almost a let-down how easy it was to turn it in and get my degree. I almost wanted to scream, “That’s all?!” at the poor guy in the Graduate Studies Office as she handed me my temporary degree. All of that hard work boiled down to checking off items on a checklist, making sure my page numbers were in order and going in the same direction throughout, and random checks of my page margins? It almost made me laugh out loud. And I do laugh now, when I look back at how wonderfully trying my whole journey has been. In fact, my journey has been what a substantial portion of this blog has been about ever since it came into existence. And now that part of me is done. I am a PhD. What does it feel like? Strangely empty, I must say. Nothing changes, really. I still clean up my own mess. I still do laundry. I still have to see the in-laws for the holidays. But now, I suppose they’ll have to call my Dr. WHO.
All joking aside, it was really bittersweet to finally be done with this nasty journey that has taken up my life for 3 years. And while I didn’t really care one way or another about receiving my degree, other people did. I actually put off telling my mom about it for a couple of days because I just plain kept forgetting. Then one day, she called to talk and I let slip that I had finally gotten my degree, not knowing that I hadn’t told her yet. I swiftly apologize for not telling her earlier (and honestly, a part of me figured that at this point, no one cared anymore anyway) and I was shocked by how happy she was to hear the news. The cynical side of me figured that she was so happy because he had thought that I was never going to finish and had given up on me. And if that were truly the case, then I’m glad I proved her wrong. But I don’t really think that she believed that. I think she was just genuinely happy for and proud of me, something that she hasn’t been able to be ever since I graduated from college with my honors. And I’m glad that I made her proud. I’m glad that someone is happy about this degree because, well, me, I just feel meh about it. But then again, I am done and that is something.