Since coming back from my grandmother’s, I have been steadily feeling better. In fact, a lot of the time, I feel pretty good. And so, I foolishly thought I was out of the woods. But, yesterday I found myself sitting at my desk, trying not to cry, and I realized that I still have quite a ways to go.
I’ve been trying to schedule my penultimate committee meeting. At this meeting, you present what you have for graduation and your committee either says, “Go ahead, write your thesis and schedule your defense,” or, “You’re not ready yet, do these other experiments.” I really need to have this thing before the end of the quarter. So, I sent an email to my committee asking about specific dates and times and two of my committee members got back to me right away. The third waited a day and a half, then told me he couldn’t possibly do it before April 27. Well, the deadline for giving your committee a draft of your thesis so that you can graduate this quarter is April 29. So, this means that there’s no way I can graduate this quarter even if I manage to get the experiment finished and all my writing done.
Mostly, I was just pissed off when I got the response from Dr. Problem. Surely, the man had two hours to spare for my committee meeting sometime in the next month!
I forwarded the email to Advisor, explained about graduating, and Advisor didn’t think it was worth fighting over (because the chances of me graduating this quarter were so slim, anyway). So, fine. If Advisor isn’t worried about it, I’m not going to worry about it either. I sent out another email about scheduling my meeting, but now Dr. Problem is out of town for a week so I won’t be able to work on the scheduling until he gets back (because he’s not answering his email).
Okay, so I’ve got this committee member giving me problems, but I was mostly cool with it. Frustrated, but functional.
Then, after lunch, I talked to L, who is second author on my paper, about doing more tetrad dissections today and tomorrow. I have 8 strains that need to be made and they can only be made via tetrad dissection and so far, I only have 1 strain. L has been doing the dissections because I don’t know how (well, I know how, but tetrad dissection is a skill that requires a lot of practice; add to that the fact that dissection requires fine motor skills and my hands have a slight tremor to them and you realize why it’s a bad idea for me to try and do it). Well, she wants me to test the other spores she’s dissected before she dissects more. The thing is, there aren’t that many of them and, for various reasons, I’m not confident there’s enough to ensure I have the strain I need. So, I explained to her that it would be ideal to have more spores growing up while I’m testing the ones I currently have, just in case I don’t get the strains I need. Still, she refuses. She says it may be a waste of her time since I could very well already have the strains.
I can appreciate her viewpoint. I really can. The thing is, when I came back last week, Advisor told me that he spoke to L and she agreed to take over more of the lab work if I needed it. Also, L is the one who will be finishing this thing up if it’s not done by the time I leave. So, I was really not expecting her to balk at this.
Well, this little discussion with L just put me right over the edge. Back to feeling like I’m being dissed by the very people who are supposed to help me.
I feel pathetic for getting so upset. I know neither of these things is that big of a deal. It’s not really going to delay me and Dr. Problem and L are not trying to hurt me and they sure as hell don’t know that I’m A Woman On the Edge. And, if I wasn’t already a basket case I probably would shrug these things off. But, dammit, I’m just. so. tired. of. this. shit. I’m tired of fighting. I’m tired of this place, this work, this situation, these people–all of it! I desperately wanted to go home and crawl into bed where nobody and nothing are going to disappoint me. However, I knew that would be a colossal mistake. So, I held myself together as best I could, looked at a whole bunch of Lolcats to try and cheer myself up a little, and stuck it out until the end of the day when I hopped a bus to the yarn store.
The yarn store is becoming my happy place which is a little concerning because I always buy yarn when I’m there and good yarn is not cheap. Still, it’s probably cheaper than going to the hospital. I came home with three balls of yarn and a book of patterns for baby things. I’m now in the process of knitting a sweater for Sister’s Baby (which was due yesterday).
I can’t wait to see what today brings.