July 8, 2014

Defended


I had a longer post written out, ready to go. Then, I accidentally deleted it. Apparently being nearly done with a doctoral program in no way prevents me from doing silly things-- good to know that I'm still human, right?

Anyway, the point is that I am DONE! Last week, I successfully defended my doctoral dissertation and am now finished with the hard part of graduate school. I am still waiting to get the formatting of my paper approved (margins and spacing and all that jazz) by my college, and then the Dean has to sign off on it. I also have a couple more weeks left of my clinical internship, but that's it! It should be smooth sailing from here on out.

It's a weird feeling, as though I’ve been running this marathon for years and years, and while I knew that the finish line had to be coming up at some point, I also thought that maybe it was just a fantasy, a legend. And then it finally appeared on the horizon, and before I had a chance to fully process that I had made it, that I was going to finish, I had already crossed it and was on the other end. And now there is just this feeling of pride, yes, but also bewilderment and disbelief. Could it really be? Did it really happen?

I suspect that feeling will linger for a while longer. I keep correcting people when they call me “Doctor.” Partly because my degree will not officially be conferred until August, but also because there are still these small administrative steps to go through before all of my graduation requirements are officially completed. But maybe I just want to cling on to school for a little bit longer. Maybe I’m not ready to let go just yet.

So it goes. Here I am. Defended, but not yet graduated. It’s an odd place, but I think it is ultimately the place to be. For now.

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