Life keeps throwing chances at me…

…and I keep throwing them away.   Maybe I’ll never graduate. Maybe I’m supposed to be an ESL elementary school teacher forever. I’m starting to get comfy in my teacher jumper. I’m starting to see myself doing this in the … Continue reading

Smile like you mean it

There is no day that goes by without someone checking out my post Writing a thesis while being depressed, mission impossible? It is by far the most read post on this blog, some examples of the search words that lead … Continue reading

Sweeping the crumbs of despair

Been sitting here for two hours looking at my attempt of a draft of my final chapter of the Frankenthesis. It’s not really the last chapter, it’s the second one, but it’s the only one I’m missing. Have to deliver it by Friday so that it can be checked and read by the people at the dreaded thesis seminar. I’ve gotten extension after extension, and this is the last chance I have of delivering it. I honestly think I’m in danger of losing my tutor. This isn’t wat she signed up. She’s not my mother, nor my therapist, nor my friend. She’s a successful academic who accepted to work with a high performance student, and what she got is a depressed, washed up , insecure cry baby who can’t manage to write down a chapter without a breakdown.

If I finish on Friday, I’ll be done with my self-created monster. Not DONE done, but I’ll be on the other side, on the much greener (or so I think) grass of corrections and editing. If only I could have it done by Friday I’d have one less stone to carry around. But as I was saying, I’ve been wasting my time for two hours and produced exactly 2 paragraphs, one of which I erased. And so, I come here to whine in the totally realistic hopes that ideas will magically flow into my mind and I’ll just have to write them down.

Today was a better day though, I don’t want to sound like I’m still swimming in the same misery pond I was on Sunday and Monday, let’s say I’m just dipping my feet in those waters. Panic has receded into anxiety, and after the f*cking Science Fair was over and done with at school (something I hated so much I didn’t even blog about), and I managed to gain a small victory against the infernal online system that runs the reviews I’m working for, I managed to ease up on the apprehensive state of shock I was in.

Anyhow, I guess this is me reporting I’m back from the land of despair where I’ve been approved a resident’s visa. Lovely trip, the sightseeing is amazing. Here’s a pic I had taken while I was there, fun times!

sadcat

A good day today.

This one should be yet another short post. I hope I’m not making a habit out of it, but I’m just so incredibly tired, both physically and mentally. Sunday was a sucky day, didn’t get any work done, and it was a generally bad angsty day, even when I got to prove yet another time that it doesn’t matter what I do by going out with a very dear friend whom I hadn’t seen in a year. I just couldn’t enjoy it and be myself. When it’s a sucky angsty Sunday there is nothing I can do that will change it. And this particular Sunday was a bad one, that’s where my exhaustion began. When Monday came and it was time for me to get out of bed, that’s when my depressive-mode really hit me hard. It’s exasperating that on Sunday evening I kept wishing it was Monday already so I could get on with things, and when Monday did come I was just to depressed to enjoy what I had been waiting for.

All through Monday morning I just felt like quitting everything. My job, my thesis, my new job at the institute, my life really. Then I went to Mr. Shrinky’s office and he made it a little better. He helped me realize I’m struggling very much with the fact that there are people out there who care about me and who appreciate me for many reasons, even though I was made to believe I didn’t deserve it. I grew up with parents who would look at me as if I were a something like a pet. I never had any physical needs unattended, but I was not worthy of their time and affection, I just wasn’t interesting or good enough. I too watched some stuff I shouldn’t have watched, but they didn’t care what I saw, just like you wouldn’t mind what a dog or a bunny caught you doing. You feed them, you keep them clean, you teach them a few tricks. Then your job is done isn’t it?

And now, I’m faced with a new job I’ve apparently earned with my personal traits. There are people who think I’m valuable, responsible, smart, and they’re willing to put themselves out there for me. That’s just a very twilight-zone thing for me. They don’t HAVE to appreciate me, they don’t HAVE to care for me. They don’t HAVE to have me near them. But they still want to. This is something that’s causing a big unbalance inside of me, and on Monday I just couldn’t keep it together.

I did manage to get up and go to work though. Got there on time by the skin of my teeth. And I functioned. That was my biggest achievement yesterday. I functioned. Felt like torture, and getting the day done is actually something I’m proud of because of how hard it was.

Today was different. I’m once again alone at the house with the kitties. I don’t usually see the mother until night-time but knowing she’s out of town lifts a burden off my shoulders. So that made things a little better. Also, I went to Mount Olympus (I’ll be going there two days a week) and got a lot of tasks done. I felt productive and engaged, something I don’t usually get when working with the children and that somehow has a sweeter and longer aftertaste in me (with the children what I get are feelings of joy and concern, the first one lasts momentarily, and the second one stays with me through the day but it’s not something that makes me feel good).

So yep, I’m working two jobs now, a part-time and a full-time one. That besides the ever-lasting torture commitment of my dissertation. By the way, remember that thesis seminar where I made a huge fool of myself and got triggered like hell? Well, next month, it’s one of my chapters they’ll be discussing and I’m so excited (not), especially since I STILL haven’t finished my last chapter, the one that would set me free. It too feels excruciating, except I’m not getting the job done, unlike my last Monday.

I’m off to bed now, hope y’all are being nice boys and girls. I miss reading your blogs, but I’m gonna have to leave it ’til tomorrow for as they say here in Mexico: I can’t even handle my soul. Night!

I’m not dead

It’s been a week since my last post. I don’t think I had taken so long between posts in a while. I tried to write a continuation to my “Daddy Issues” post, but I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. This past week was a particularly tough one, I had a lot of trouble finding meaning in my life and I couldn’t help feeling like a complete failure. When I sat down trying to write, it just felt like it was pointless because nobody would care, even if I had a lot of positive feedback from the above mentioned post and some people even asked for part two, I’m just too much of a coward to go ahead with it, so I guess I’m putting it off for a bit, just until I get my head around what I want to say and how I’m going to say it.

I’m starting to wonder if part of the reason I have trouble telling the deepest stuff about my father issues is because I’m afraid people will think I’m just a whining baby, maybe they’ll see me for what I am, a young adult who’s traumatized by events that aren’t even comparable with the horrors other people went through while growing up. Maybe I’m just waiting for someone to tell me, like my mother has for so long, to suck it up and get over it.

And hell, I haven’t even started about my mother, that’s gonna take a whole new level of nerve. I’ve been dancing about the idea of writing about my mother for a lot of time, and I know I’m gonna keep on doing just that for a long time before I dare to dip my feet in those waters.

Anyhow, I guess this is some kind of  hi-there-I’m-not-dead post, just to get back on track. I love this blog and I don’t want to get away from it for too long, and my writing prompt for today ends there really.

Oh wait! I have some juicy stuff! Ha, I’ve been so absorbed all week about not finding meaning in life, that I completely forgot to tell you that I finished another chapter of the Frankenthesis, and now I’m just half a chapter away from finishing it, yaaaay! I can’t believe I’m almost there, I can see the light at the end of this tunnel. When I’m done with it, I know it won’t be so hard to find meaning in stuff, and just enjoy life a little more.

In other news, we’ve got a new addition to the kitty family. Except…well… it’s not really a kitty, and it’s not an addition I agreed on, but since it wasn’t my decision to make (and I loove her cutie face), I’m just gonna see if me and my kitties can roll with it. Of course if kitties can’t adjust, I’m not gonna let this go by so smoothly, their well-being is my priority in this case. Without further adieu, meet… Lula!

Thesis rant

Why is it so hard? Is it supposed to be like this? I swear I’ve been working all day and when I looked, I realized I’d only written about 2 pages and still have at least four more pages to write. When I was still taking courses it wasn’t so hard. I could sit down at 8 o’clock at night, maybe even 9 or 10, and I could write down a 15 pages long essay that was due the next morning, and still get a pretty good grade. Where is that girl? I need her so very much.

I just feel so desperate, it’s like swimming real hard to get to the shore, but you’re barely moving because the tide is so strong, and you see the shore, and you know you’re close, but you just can’t get there and you get so tired and frustrated you feel you’re gonna drown any second. That’s how I feel. I hope it goes away soon. I hope the apple cinnamon tea I just made for myself washes these feelings away.

I need to write two 25 pages long chapters for Jan 15. Right now I’ve been working on one that’s already 21 pages long, but I just can’t seem to be able to finish it. The other one… well I don’t even want to look at it but it must be about 8 pages long if I’m lucky.

BF says it’s normal, that it’s only my second day back after the Xmas break, that it’s not acceptable to say I can’t, I’m just simply off-court and need to get back on track. Maybe I’m just too hasty and terrible at waiting to see results.

I do have to say the comments from yesterday’s post helped a lot, and I’m already following your advice so I hope to see the outcome soon.

Anyways, my rant is over. Thanks for bearing with me. I’ll now get back to working on my little monster.

The Frankenthesis strikes again

I don’t consider me a New Year’s Day Grinch, but I do wonder what the fuzz is all about. The firts day of the year is always a dead day, nobody’s out on the street, everything’s closed, and your supposed to enjoy the quietness and calm around you. Well, I don’t. Even more, this calm worries me because I fear that’s one of the reasons why Sundays are so hard on me. That’s what it’s come to, I’m feeling just a hint of a chest pain, but I’m terribly scared of what it may become as the day goes by, because it can get so strong it amazes me it doesn’t kill me. So I’m gonna try to keep busy, probably reading and working on the Frankenthesis. I haven’t finished a couple of books and I might get to that.

As for the thesis, I didn’t deliver what I was supposed to in December, and now I have a lot more work to get done by Jan 15th, and I’m not sure how exactly I’m going to manage to get it done. If only I’d type on it as many words as I have on this blog, I’m sure I would’ve finished it by now 🙄 and I have to admit I need all the cheering up I can get to work hard and maybe finish what I’m supposed to.

This time around, New Year’s Day is reminding me of everything I didn’t accomplish, of all the different ways I messed up, and all the problems I got myself into, money being the most worrying one. I guess I’m feel a little ripped out because people act as if  on Jan 1st everybody got a clean slate, and I don’t see that. What I see is a reminder that time keeps going by, it doesn’t stop and everything we do keeps adding to our tab.

All I got left, and I realize it’s a very big thing, is the hope that things will get better, and man do I need a brighter horizon to keep me going right now! Hope is the fuel that so many times keeps our engines running when all evidence says there’s no point. And today I can be thankful that I do feel the warmth of hope (however small it may be) in my heart to keep me going.

I realize this is a bittersweet post (that’s a little more bitter than sweet), but still let me take the time to wish you all a happy 2013 full of happy moments and goals achieved, and a year that brings you as least sorrow as possible! 🙂

What the Frankenthesis looks like these days.(Image credit: http://www.craftycrafty.tv)

What the Frankenthesis looks like these days.
(Image credit: http://www.craftycrafty.tv)

Death-lines and facebook depression

I have to hand in the third chapter of the-thesis-that-must-not-be-named on Friday, and this is more of a death-line than a deadline, since I’m absolutely convinced the world will end if I don’t*. I’m missing about 8 pages, so that’s about 2 pages per day, doesn’t sound too bad right? When I put it like that it looks perfectly doable, and yet instead of working in on it I’m writing a post.

The fourth and first chapters are done, so when I hand this one in, I’ll only be missing the second one, which has about 30% of its contents written. My problem is not so much the quantity as much as the quality of the writing. I have such a big lack of confidence that I can’t tolerate the thought of putting my incompetence out there in a piece of paper for everyone to see and probably laugh at. And I’m honestly terrified of my dissertation, it’s crushing not only my confidence but my every goal and hope in life. I can’t shake off the feeling of the huge desapointment I’ll be for everyone and for myself if I never finish it and honestly, this is an option that’s starting to appear on the horizon, as opposed to the new paths and possibilities opened for people my age that are graduating. I’ve started seeing it all the time thanks to the wonders of Facebook: What’s-his-name from elementary school just got his degree and now is going to backpack through Europe, there’s the girl who always annoyed the shit out of me getting married and having perfect babies, and oh don’t forget the armies of former classmates going off to graduate school abroad.

My bottom line is Facebook sucks ass. And that’s the main reason why I’ve deserted it. I don’t need the constant reminders of what a failure I am and how my life is going nowhere. What’s worse is that facebooking has become some sort of obligation and people constantly pressure me into loging in and checking this or that, and when I don’t, for them it’s like I’ve stopped caring because I’ve missed a lot of the stuff that’s going on with them. In order to stop that, I’ve been logging once every other week and take some minutes to see what I’ve missed, that’s about all the facebook I can take right now and I do hope people stop taking it personally. Also, I just can’t deal right now with the I’m-always-so-happy image that most people put up in their profiles. I think when I’m done with this torture that my thesis is, maybe I’ll be able to go back to it for the things I enjoy about it, like the political expressions and being more in touch with the people I know, or the cat pictures! 😉

* I’d be so great if the world would end on the D-21st, I wouldn’t have to finish my thesis! 😀

Writing a thesis while being depressed, mission impossible?

If you read the title of this post and expect to find an answer for the question I presented, I’m sorry because I will disappoint you, I’m getting good at disappointing people. I haven’t excelled in writing my thesis, no matter what the high expectations everybody had on me, but once my dissertation was in the mix together with severe depression, that’s when I really lost sight of how to do what needed to be done to get where I wanted to go.  Some days I don’t even know why I keep trying. On the bright side, this is not happening every freaking day like it used to, now the really gloomy days appear to come less often than the grey ones. The bright, happy ones are still a gift I’ve yet to receive.

It’s funny I should be thinking of this issue today, writing about it, when I actually managed to get a lot of work done. Well, a lot compared to my other days, because it was nothing compared to what I used to produce when I was more functional. Maybe that’s just the point, I feel intellectually tired and ready to pop a movie and just relax, like I had an incredible amount of work finished, but the fact is when I looked at what I did, I felt completely miserable because of how little it seems, and it’s not difficult to go from there to self harm for me.

Today I had pretty strong thoughts of doing exactly that instead of going to therapy, fortunately it wasn’t like other occasions when I can’t think of anything else and I end up falling for what in that moment seems like the easy way out… in the end I dragged my ass to shrinky’s office. Maybe I’m not being completely straightforward, I was feeling miserable in the first place because I didn’t go to work. I have a deadline due on Friday and I knew there was no possible way to get my chapter finished and my pending stuff from work if I didn’t force my schedule a little bit (working as a teacher means you’ll always take a lot of work home). This makes me feel like a complete failure, like I’m failing all around my responsibilities, and well, that’s sort of the train of thoughts I was riding when I wanted to cut myself.

Shrinky told me some stuff that I didn’t want to hear and didn’t help much at that time, but now is making me feel a little better. He said I’m too hard on myself, verging on cruel, and that for me it’s always about being the best or being nothing at all. There’s no in-betweens, and when I dare to not be the best, my self-hatred is so strong that all I can think about is hurting me. He reminded me of everything I’ve dealt with in this past month and how it’s perfectly natural if I can’t meet my deadline…still feels like I’m an utter failure, but it’s helping me get a hold of myself.

Back to what I was talking about before I started rambling, I guess I’m just wondering out loud how I can deal with these two things that are eating me up. One is my Frankenthesis (a term coined during T, because my own creation is turning against me), and the other is my depression. Somehow, they’ve become bff’s, allies in putting me down and keeping me from moving on. And don’t get me wrong, I know I am doing just that, except that it’s not at the pace I’d like to, not at the pace everyone expected from me. Generally speaking, I am better than I was months ago, it’s just I’d like to be free from these plummets and get on with my life!

So if you have any thoughts as to how I can deal with writing a thesis while being depressed, do let me know! Pretty please?

Related posts:

If you found this post by googling key words such as “dissertation depression”  or “I am afraid of my dissertation”, these readings might help (thanks to @carmenmccain for bringing them to my attention):

The-thesis-that-must-not-be-named

I’m currently torturing myself with a thesis about gender history. Not that I want to. The moment I’m done I’ll be running towards a new torture, graduate level, but back here in Mexico, if you’re a public university student you have to suck it and write a thesis even if your plan is to move right up to a graduate level.

Even if most of them end up being useless idols of boredom and futility that’ll decorate our families bookshelves, you still have to do it. Even if that puts mexican students behind any kind of reasonable competitive level against other countries, and this means that at age 25 we’re still doing an undergraduate thesis and there are people our same age doing postdosc everywhere else. Not that I’m bitter about it or anything like that… just sayin’.