It's been yet again a long time since I posted. A few of my in-laws were visiting for all of July; we spent a lot of time in the car going here, there, and everywhere. Kids didn't go to day care. We had a lot of fun; of course, it wasn't always easy having a full house, but great memories were made. Now, here I am, two weeks after everyone has left, and I'm struggling. I thought that I would be so motivated to get back in the swing of things last week. Did that happen? Nope. I've also been somewhat paralyzed by frustrations I've had with my dissertation. I still need to get a few more interviews done, and no one is responding. I'm not too surprised, after all, it's summer, and I know many of these people travel quite a bit anyways. However, I've made embarrassingly little progress with transcribing, and very little progress with other aspects of the work. I've also been distracted by other projects I took on for the summer--one for pay, although I haven't been able to do many hours for that, either, and one which was intended to help me produce a publishable paper. But alas, these things have distracted me from my dissertation.
I'm also struggling on this fine Monday with other things. I feel a bit down because I miss my kids. Not the traditional mom guilt, but I would rather be spending time with them. In summers past, they would just go to day care maybe 2 days per week, and I would plan fun activities for them the remaining days. Although they didn't go to day care all of July, they've been going full time since everyone left. I guess part of the issue is that we barely have the money to send them this month, and I feel partly guilty that I'm not making as much progress as I had hoped. Nevertheless, I'm nostalgic about those 2 past summers, and the summer is almost over.
I reckon that I'm not the only one out there who feels this way. All this is compounded by the sinking feeling that I need to get all this stuff done so that I can finish this PhD, but I'm not too excited about what might lie ahead. Ever have thoughts about jumping ship? I would have to bet that I'm not the only one out there feeling this way. Family members keep encouraging me to press on and I try to keep a positive outlook, but it's not always easy.
I don't know if anyone reads this, and I don't intend to be discouraging. I guess this blog is also an outlet for me to be real, because so many people are afraid to be honest with themselves and others in the world of academe. Someone asked me recently what my plan was to get back on track and finish. I said that I was just taking things one day at a time, trying to do various tasks here and there, but I'd rather be at the playground or the museum with my kids (I didn't say that last part :)). I guess I need to take things one day at a time, and also make the most out of the time that is left of the summer. Because here in the North, as August becomes September, we know that we are in for those 2 nasty four letter words soon-- COLD and SNOW!