Grad school is a funny thing. In my handy-dandy Franklin-Covey Organizer, I have a list of all the things I need to accomplish to get my Ph.D. But, of course, this list of “things to do” are not the types of things that I can get done in a weekend, or even a week, or even a month. They are the kinds of things that get checked off slowly. That are the very definition of long-term goals. Truly, getting one’s Ph.D. is a lot like watching the formation of the Grand Canyon. It is an exercise in patience. In consistent motivation. In a sustained attention to something you’d better have a passion for. It is not something for the likes of us who have a short attention span. (Don’t ask me how I got into this, the lover of sound bites and Simpsons quotes that I am.)
But anyway, today I got to check something else off my List of Things To Do to get My Doctorate: I went and got my comprehensive exams proposal approved by my Area. (What?)
To clarify: In order to begin work on my Comprehensive Exams (which are, in short, the long list of shit I’ll be reading over the next nine months and then writing a series of papers and one actual exam on), I need to run the proposed list of things to read by my Area (or department). They get the final say-so. My committee was all very supportive, but my doctoral degree program seems to be laden with a series of rather esoteric events that I’m sure have their reasons which are rarely very apparent. But I digress. The long and the short of it is that I passed. The Area said “yes” and I am now through another hurdle and am officially “in comps” which means I get to actually read all those books on my bibliography. Woohoo!
This is Very Good News.
It is also my way of explaining my absence from the scene as of late. I feel like I have a million phone calls to return. I feel like I owe a bunch of people dinner dates and phone calls and good old fashioned hang out time. Grad school can be a bit distracting. Especially when, like me, you’re also committed to a part-time job and taking care of a very very cute dog (who needs dental surgery, the subject of a future rant no doubt). To be sure, I’ve got a bit on my plate as of late. But let me assure all my friends and family that you are all very much in my thoughts and I am as always grateful and appreciative of the support and love you’ve given me.
Sometimes I am astounded that the fucked-up little punk who dropped out of high school is just two years shy of having a doctorate. (That’s Dr. Fucked-up Punk to you, buddy!)
At any rate, felt the need to check in. The proposal’s been passed. Now it’s time for the real work.