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    • Amanda Labuza
      By Amanda Labuza in Dissertation Writing 1
      Just as I made my last post, I finally got a defense date. Woohoo!!! It is happening! But that was soon followed by sheer panic. Oh my gosh. It is all happening so fast. I went from wondering how much longer and being frustrated telling everyone at the holidays I wasn't done yet. And in a few weeks I finished the last experiment, got the last approval, and realized all the small little pieces I have written are not done at all. This is the largest emotional rollercoaster in the world.
      I think this is worse than hormonal mood-swings. In the past week I have simultaneously felt elated, depressed, relieved, stressed, hopeful, dreadful, overwhelmed, prepared, excited, and nervous. I have felt like after all of this work I have earned this, and like a crazy imposter who has no right to have gotten this far. I am so excited to be done and so scared to leave this comfortable cocoon.
      I'm so grateful to the help my PI is giving me and so frustrated by his edits. I start writing and feel like I can have this all down. But then I go to turn in a draft and feel like it is all terrible and elementary. I get excited I'm at the point to turn in another chapter, and terrified of what kind of comments will come back. But I keep reminding myself, these are just drafts. And the point of drafts is to get feedback. Feedback makes you better. Everyone gets their writing edited. Everyone. Even literal professional writers. Yet I still psych myself out. But also think I know this topic better than anyone else. And then I panic over how little time I have to write. But excited how little time I have until I'm done. 
      No wonder everyone I've seen write their dissertation is freaking out. This is so stressful! And exciting! All the feelings at once!

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