It has been a month and a day since I last posted anything on this blog. That is not due to not having anything to post; on the contrary, Julie from A Cracked Bat sent me a literal box full of goodies that I need to post about, but I just haven't had time to scan. Time has been my real nemesis.
Why has time been my nemesis, you ask? Well, I planned on graduating this December, so I had been busting my tail to finish my dissertation proposal so I could defend it, collect data, write my dissertation, and then defend that. However, my dissertation chair failed to tell me that we have an "unwritten rule" that mandates a 90-day period between proposal defense and dissertation defense. Because of that rule, there is no way that I can accomplish everything in time to graduate. So I'm here until May.
I thought I may have time this week to get to scanning, but we experienced a tragedy on campus Monday night. I met with students until about 7:15 that evening. About 10 minutes after leaving campus, I received an alert via text message to let me know a campus police officer had been shot and the campus was going into lockdown. Sadly, the officer did not survive. The shooter was caught a couple hours later. I have really had a hard time wrapping my head around this...these tragedies are senseless and I just can't understand the hate on has in his heart that allows him to pull the trigger. I will say, though, that it was incredible seeing the campus come together in the immediate aftermath of this. One of the campus traditions is for a campus spirit group called the Saddle Tramps to wrap our campus statue of Will Rogers in red streamers on football game days. Monday night, they wrapped the statue in black and blue streamers in honor of the officer. Here is a photo:
This was posted on social media my the Saddle Tramps. I visited the statue the next day and snapped a photo myself, but it isn't nearly as beautiful:
Later in the week, I realized how therapeutic personal writing is for me. I say "personal writing" because academic writing isn't the same. I estimate that in my time in this PhD program, I've probably written 600-700 pages of original material, and that has only added stress to my life. However, writing on this blog is very cathartic. It helps me clear my head. I need to get back in the habit of writing for myself. We'll see where that goes.
Thanks for taking a moment to read. If you feel compelled, I encourage you to comment. However, if your comment is of a political nature - discussing gun control, for instance - I ask that you refrain. You are certainly entitled to your opinion, but I don't want this to become a post about politics. Thanks in advance.
I hope you all are well!