Wednesday, February 16, 2011

thoughts on graduate school

Hi friends,

I just have to say, grad school is hard.

I was talking with my superior at work, who was suggesting that I continue on in my studies (ie PhD) with the convincing argument that the "real world" is no good. I had to disagree. I miss the real world. I miss finishing each day and being done with it. I miss leaving work and having it be seperate from my life. Grad school does not allow the separation of work and life. I instead carry my thesis with me everywhere. It is in the back of my mind when I'm enjoying life with my husband or friends, at parties, at dinner, while I'm cleaning, while I'm cooking. I think about it when I wake up. There is always something to read, something to edit, something to change. I can't wait until its packaged up and out the door.

I don't think grad school is like this for everyone. Many people thrive in this environment. I think that I must over think graduate school. I take it personally, and I search for meaning and purpose. This thesis, this degree, has become my primary purpose for the last year. Lately it has been hard to remember that I have other duties and purposes in life. Despite the edits and the research and the changes I must continue to be a wife, sister, friend, maker of parties, owner of cat, daughter, maker of pie, maker of earrings. When I had a full time job (oh that old life where I worked and made money and could shop superfluously for things like jeans and shoes and jewelry) I could come home after a long day or a stressful day and still be these things- something about this thesis has made it hard for me to separate my life from my work..and I hate that.

Luckily, at the end of every winter is spring and my spring is fast approaching. I sincerely hope that I will be done and enjoying the weather in no time as I'm not sure if I can continue with this cyclical process. I honestly don't know if the stress I have accrued throughout this process will be worth the degree, but I look forward to the next chapter and discovering the answer to this question.

That is all for now :).


Allie said...

Congrats on almost being done! I'm looking forward to you getting back to the real world too. But I have to add, many of those same problems exist when you work from home (or from your phone, sending emails from bed like me) or own your own business. I am always working.

Julia (Color Me Green) said...

i feel for you. this is why i did not and will not go to grad school. undergrad was stressful enough, all those sleep deprived nights writing giant papers, i knew i couldn't take any more of that. some of us just get more stressed out by school than others!

jes [a mountain bride] said...

I hear you on that. even though I am FINALLY done with med school - I have boards (on wednesday no week before my baby is due!) And then next year? yep...another boards exam. And so on and so on. Every few years..more boards.

it's hard to relax knowing that I should always be studying something. It's exhausting. I sometimes just wish I would have been a secretary or something and lived a chillax lifestyle...and came home at the end of the day to my little family and just enjoyed it all.

I would have been an AMAZING secretary.

annie said...

this post reminds me so much of last semester... i had so looked forward to grad school, and there i was, absolutely miserable. props to you for sticking it out; i've taken a semester off, and may choose to withdraw for now (i'm still undecided). the truth is, i just wanted my life back. now i have it, and i love it. good luck as you try to finish up! i know you'll be proud and relieved to have that hard earned degree in hand!