Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Success :)

At the moment, my life is almost entirely centered around my little one who is 14 months old and I am not complaining one bit!
Amazingly enough though, I am also doing a PhD (doctorate) in philosophy which I have been stop-starting for over a year now, due to pregnancy, birth, miscarriage, life...etc.
Part of the PhD process now involves this crossing of milestones, basically this means that at three points during your research, you basically have to prove that what your doing is worthy of the university's support and that you are bringing something new into the academic world.
Anyway, out of the blue a few weeks ago my supervisor rings me up to suggest that I do my confirmation (first milestone) before I go "roaming" again and also out of the blue, I agree!

So here I am, hubby working away, older daughter studying for her exams at uni, me running around like a headless chook just managing the basics (food, house, sleep-sometimes) and now I have foolishly committed to present a document to a panel of philosophers in under three weeks....yeah right!

The day looms closer, the writing gets done-just.

Hubby comes home...routine goes out the window, time escapes, D Day arrives!

So I take the long drive down to the is stinking hot and I am nervous and unprepared.
I leave my family on the grass and head on up....feeling like a child about to see the principle...I need the loo badly!

Ok, I am sitting there (on the loo) and I start to do some Anapana (breathing meditation)...slowly I start to relax.
I move myself out side the room and sit myself down in the big old fashioned arm chairs that I guess are meant to make you fell at home??!!!!

Shaking...sweating....needing the loo again and feeling like vomiting....

Everything I have worked for could all be thrown away in the next 30 mins if I don't get this right......

Suddenly, I had this huge realisation....
Hang on, I am 41 years old.
I have given birth to three children, traveled the world and experienced so many things....what am I worried about???
So what if they don't like my work,
So what if I don't continue on with this....
when push comes to shove, what does it all matter any way????

By this stage, I saunter into the room totally at ease.

It was then, that I realised that my paper, which talks about things like "patriarchy" and "female subordination" , was about to be presented to a room full of MEN!!
I couldn't believe it, the only two women in the room besides myself were my supervisors.
For about thirty seconds I felt like running out of the room as fast as my little legs could carry me, but then I thought
Yes, this is my point exactly....where are the women????
This gave me such rush of determination that I read my paper, I answered all their philosophical questions and I walked out of there with my head held high and a big fat CONGRATULATIONS from all of them to boot!!!

Not bad...Not bad at all!!!


  1. Woohoo! Congratulations! What can I say? I have absolutely been there - (including trying to write a Phd thesis with a 14 month old).

    Success indeed - relish it. You've really earned it : )

  2. I can't get my head around a mama with a child under 3 and working on a degree. It baffles. I've done both - child and studying - but not at the same time!

    LOVE that you found the 'so what' in it. :)

  3. Congratulations! I loved reading this story and feeling right there with you. This is exactly right, and I love the catharsis at the end! :)

  4. Nettles...might have to pick your brain at some stage RE the doing the PhD with a toddler :)
    Mon... I know, I can't either at times!!
    Hobo Mama, thanks for the support :)

  5. A very inspiring read and you had just the right attitude, reminding yourself of all your great achievements to date and therefore being able to deal with this situation - very admirable too.

  6. Not bad at all! Love your soliloquy about all the reasons why of course you can do it. Wow, my hat goes off to you, especially as this is something I couldn't contemplate with continuum parenting a 14 month old (I mean, I'm assuming you still get pretty broken sleep!). Then again, who knows what I'll be able to do with this 3rd one! You've inspired me! :)
    I know, isn't that temple and the way it was created something!