Monday, March 28, 2016
I'm coming down from the craziest time so far in my academic career. I submitted my thesis for review last week and just finished up my final traditional class--a Flash Fiction course--before graduation. For a week I was waiting to hear back about my thesis, which meant constant refreshing of my email inbox and re-reading the final product, wondering what someone seeing it for the first time would think.
The last few weeks have been a frenzy of writing and editing and formatting and nitpicking and agonizing over 80 pages of personal essays. It's been a funny mix of confidence and terror: I submitted my best work ever, so I felt very good about that. They can ask for edits, though, so I was trying to stay in a frame of mind where I could jump back into work if they needed me to.
So much of my work was done, I just wanted to relax into vacation mode! When I finally, finally (I'm being dramatic--it took less than a week) got the email with my final approval, no edits required, you're good to go, thesis status, I burst into tears. I knew I'd been anxious about graduating, but I really think in the minutes that followed I felt all of it at once and it was just...so much. It was a borderline panic attack rush of emotions, which was very strange because they were positive emotions, but all just so overwhelming.
Now that March is winding down, I'm starting to finally relax from the creative and physical exhaustion. For a long time it all felt like too much. I remember thinking that I truly didn't have anything more to give to this process. But of course, I did it! And that is so exciting.
And so now, officially, I am done. DONE. I have a Master of Fine Arts degree in Writing. Two years ago this felt like a very, very faraway dream. Even though my whole life has been rearranged around this program for the last eighteen months, saying it still feels pretty surreal. Adding to the craziness? Three days before I submitted my thesis, I was offered a teaching job at BYUI. It's a position I applied for before I even started my graduate program. My application had stayed on file and they just happened to contact me right before graduation. I'll be teaching a Writing class (online!) at my beloved alma matter and I'm so excited I could dance (have danced) (am probably currently dancing).
It's been an overwhelming time in my life. Overwhelming and so, so happy.
What's next? Prepping to teach this class. Tinkering in my garden. Reading books just for fun. Baking projects. Maybe a blog post every week? I don't know, I'm just dreaming here!