Happy Things: My Dissertation Directors

As you may know if you’ve been hanging out here for awhile now, I’m working on my PhD. I should be in dissertation phase, but due to my problems with depression and a very serious suicidal period this summer, I have fallen behind. I should have submitted my prospectus (the 15-20 pg proposal of what I plan to do for my dissertation) for defense and approval last May. But I didn’t even LOOK at it or think about for MONTHS.

Well, I FINALLY finished what should be the final draft today, and sent it to my two dissertation directors for their approval before it goes to committee (at which point I have to stand up and verbally explain/defend my plan, and answer questions, god help me.) And almost immediately, one of my dissertation directors sent me back a message on FB that was so enormously complimentary I started crying and don’t know what to do with myself. I’ll quote it here:

“As I felt that if possible only one of us, between you and me, should be feeling very anxious about whether or not her project is cohering, I read first 3-4 pages of prospectus immediately and I can tell you that if it were possible to nominate prospectuses for “best prospectus” at department, college, and/or university level, I would nominate this one. I think we should keep it on file as an example of what an outstanding prospectus can be. Admittedly (because my own project is NOT at this beautiful stage at the moment and in fact appears to be composed of little fragments of groundless speculation tarted up with occasional theoretical terms to make them sound insightful) I did not read the whole thing yet — I’m too stressed about my own project, which is in that ugly gangly adolescent stage nobody loves that projects seem to be in for about 95% of their whole production, but I can tell you based on first 3-4 pages that this is GREAT. I am sorry I put you through the horrors of having to go back to it one more time, but I am so very grateful to you for having stepped up like this — this is a beautiful, beautiful thing, and I like to think that your having gotten the project up to this level at the prospectus phase will pay rich dividends throughout the diss-writing phase…”

I have never in my life been giving such high praise. I am literally blushing and flailing around and crying like an idiot over this. OMFG. Thank the good lord for women/mentors like this, with this much encouragement and kindness and faith and support in their hearts. I don’t know what I would do without them.


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