I am a procrastinator by nature. I put things off, I find ways around them, I avoid. Then I inevitably feel guilty about that. The nagging tasks I’ve avoided doing float around my brain, swirling with other, everyday mundane tasks. I feel these things in the space between my chest and my stomach. They sit there, sometimes rocks sometimes jellyfish sometimes snakes. I don’t avoid thinking about these things, I think about them the way you prod a sore tooth just to see if the pain is still there.
The task I’ve been avoiding most recently isn’t a small task. This isn’t “Oh, I have to call the dentist” (although I do have to call the dentist to get my wisdom teeth taken out). It’s not a stack of essays on my desk (although I do have a stack of essays on my virtual desk on GoogleClassroom). And even though I do need to run five miles today, that’s not the things that feels like it’s trying to escape from my sternum.
The thing I’ve been avoiding, that I have been thinking about not thinking about, that worms its way into every single conversation and thought and task I do is my dissertation.
I’m in a doctoral program and I’m up to the dissertation stage. And I’m avoiding it. I haven’t worked on it since the summer, and even then I only barely worked on it. I worked here and there with no real structure. I had a pretty solid plan in place and then I got pregnant and had a baby. And now I’m going to face the consequences of that procrastination.
I’m going to a meeting today called “Dissertation Drained?” I don’t know if it’s possible to be drained from something that you’re not actually doing, but I’m going. I’m going to talk about my struggles and how I don’t know where to start or what to do. I’m going to sit down with my advisor and with people who are actually dissertation drained and I’m going to come up with a plan. And then I’m going to come home and enjoy my baby free time (she’s at my mom’s so I can go to this meeting while my husband coaches baseball–the American family) and dissertate.