Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Life Lessons from a PhD

Big news: I am finished with my thesis.

I submitted last Wednesday with two of my sisters visiting from the US and some good friends in tow. I can't really tell you how it feels to be at this point. Sort of empty/dazed/nervous/excited/depressed/ecstatic/tired/sad/happy/grateful/other things too. Now I just have to wait for the examiners (I'm not allowed to know who they are) to review it and send back comments before I do my final oral defense--I'm expecting that will all be finished by March next year. In the meantime, there is still lots to do.

There are presentations to prepare,

journal articles to write,
emails to reply to,
library books to check out and read,
country music videos to catch up on,
friends to spend time with,
family to visit,
hikes to go on,
a couple more institute classes to teach,
kms to run,
strength to gain,
new foods to try,
time to spend in the Temple,

In addition to those things, there are some blog posts I need to write.

Introducing a new series in my blog: Life lessons from my PhD

Many times throughout my PhD, I have reflected on whether or not it has been what I thought it was going to be. I feel like the world expects that I have some sort of new abilities or knowledge or expertise now that I'm about to get three new letters behind my name. I  know that is true to an extent, as I definitely know a lot more than you probably care to wonder about the Tongan diaspora and German history in the South Pacific, although being me at this point basically feels the same as being me at seventeen, albeit with a few more memories, experience, and confidence in between. Looking back, the most important and valuable education I feel I have received has come outside of my PhD program. These things can't be put on a CV (resume), and they won't affect my income level, but they are invaluable life lessons that I (hope) I am better off for learning. I thought I'd share them with you. You're welcome.

me, my sisters, and my child, who had a 3-year gestation and is now currently being cut up with scissors by strangers. #yourewelcomefortheanalogy #happinessandalsotears

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