Woohoo! It’s done! In case anyone was concerned, yes, I was able to hand in my thesis on time, but not without the last minute drama! All-nighters did not exist until the last week before submission. For some reason, there was always something new to do, to fix, or to revise. Edits were stressful. Anyway, here’s a run-down of the last 3 days before I was able to submit.
Day 314 (a.k.a. 5 days before deadline): I received all the last revisions from my supervisor. You can imagine how stressful this was. But I agreed when she said it was better to make last minute changes if it will make the thesis better. I think it did! I spent the remainder of the day making changes to the proof-reads done by the two PhD students from our lab group (they were amazing!).
I wanted to print my thesis out on this day. That was why I was determined to stay in university until 9pm because that was when the Information Commons close. Alas, there were (still) too many last-minute things to be done, and the computer lab was starting to turn off its lights on me, so I went home.
I didn’t sleep. I stayed up checking my references, re-writing acknowledgements, and just going through the whole thing again and again and again. Finally I converted into PDF. But it messed with the layout. So I had to re-do that around 3 or more times before I finally decided to sleep. It was 4am.
Day 315: I woke up at 7am to get to a shop early and print out 248 pages of work. x3. Luckily I was the first one at the printing station, because I think it took half an hour to print 3 copies of my almost 248-page thesis. Talk about intense! What’s more intense was as I was browsing through my thesis again, I noticed a glaring error where one of the main sections became merged with another main section as a sub-section! I may not be making sense but that was what happened and I almost lost it! Thankfully the lady at the printing station lent me the computer and allowed me to make changes! My heart has never pumped that hard in my life!
Louis picked me up from the printers and we drove off to an independent binding company. I had to bus on my way back to pick up my bound thesis because Louis went back to work. That included walking under the hot afternoon sun, carrying my babies to a bus stop, and riding a bus that had no air-conditioning during the hottest time of the afternoon! Anyway, I made it safely back home with my bound babies. There was a period of rest for the remainder of the day.
Day 316: This was the day I planned to submit my thesis to our student service center. I also planned to do other administration stuff a.k.a. collect documents from people. This entailed me visiting a hospital, carrying all 3 bound copies of my thesis… they weren’t light. Anyway, I got 1 out of 2 things that I came for. I risked waiting because I didn’t know when I was going to get the second thing. It turned out I made the wrong decision of waiting, because there was no way I was getting the second thing on the same day. So I left the hospital and went to the university.
When I arrived, the campus was festive. There were bands, there was bbq, there were drinks and alcohol, and everyone was in a merry mood. This made me more nervous. I walked up to the student service center, and my fear materialized in front of me:
“Closed for the day. Open again tomorrow, at 8am”
It was noon. I was annoyed. This meant I had to wait another day to submit! I left my babies on my desk in the Masters room and went home, not feeling satisfied.
Day 317: I hoped this was going to be the day. I went by the hospital again to get that second document and I got it. I also had to pass by other locations that day. It was raining hard. It wasn’t nice. When I finally arrived in the Master’s room, I was wet and tired. I hadn’t had breakfast.
My other classmates arrived and we all decided to submit together. We were so caught up in the moment that we decided to do a little photo-shoot of ourselves holding our babies. It was fun. We arrived in the student service center, which was thankfully open, filled out some forms, and finally, finally, parted with our babies.
I felt a little bit of separation anxiety, but oh well, time for our babies to fly (I hope the examiners will be nice!).
Thanks for being with me during this one crazy year, my dear readers! My next goal at the moment is to write a manuscript for publishing, so I’ll definitely be updating you on that!
In the meantime, Merry Christmas Eve! ❤