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 he handed me my temporary degree and alumni pin. 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. I’m halfway there. What does it feel like? Strangely empty, I must say. Nothing changes, really. I still clean up my husband’s 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. Bitch.
All joking aside, it was really bittersweet to finally be done with this nasty journey that has taken up my life for 4+ 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 dad about it for a couple of days because I just plain kept forgetting. Then one day, he called to talk to my husband and my husband let slip that I had finally gotten my degree, not knowing that I hadn’t told him yet. I swiftly took the phone away from him to apologize to my dad for not telling him earlier (and honestly, a part of me figured that at this point, no one cared anymore anyway) and I was shocked by how happy he was to hear the news. The cynical side of me figured that he 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 him wrong. But I don’t really think that he believed that. I think he was just genuinely happy for and proud of me, something that he hasn’t been able to be ever since I graduated from college with my multiple honors. And I’m glad that I made him 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.