I express-mailed my final document to the UO yesterday. What a relief! The last time I blogged, I had officially passed, but I was still waiting for my committee to read my final draft. A nail-biting five days later, I heard from them, and it was accepted. Now while I might have still been able to "walk" for the graduation ceremony on June 16, if I hadn't had my final paper in by June 5, I technically would not have graduated until summer term. Now you know why my last post was slightly less than cheery.
The whole degree experience has been a roller-coaster of emotions for me. It's tested my patience and perseverance. I came very close to quitting several times, especially in the last two years. Dave asked me a couple weeks ago, "Was it worth it?" and I said, "Ask me when I'm done." Everything seemed down-to-the-wire, which is partly how I live my life (I don't recommend it), and partly how my cards were dealt. I don't want to get into details on a public blog, but overall I'm glad I did this, although my experiences weren't entirely positive. Mostly, I'm grateful to the friends and family in my life that helped me get through this. I have never felt so supported or loved, and I wouldn't have made it without them.
A friend asked me yesterday, "So, now that you have your degree, what are you going to do?" I thought, hmmm...apply for another graduate program? Quit the oboe? (my joke to Dave last week) Go back to school and start another degree entirely? My answer: "Well, I guess I'm going to be Dr. Mom." In all seriousness, I'm looking forward to actually being able to practice my instruments again (no joke...when you spend 6 hours a day in a library for academic courses in a supposedly "performance" degree...it can leave a bitter taste in your mouth), reading fiction novels, and allowing myself to read pregnancy and baby books...I'm in no rush to get a college job, although it is something I'd like to pursue in the next couple of years. So no more questions about what I'm going to do with this degree. I'm living my life, teaching, playing in a good orchestra, and embarking on parenthood. I'm looking forward to every bit of it.