Thursday, July 22, 2010

Need Advice

The Thesis is moving along, and I feel like I have some momentum. I think I can get the near-final draft wrapped up in a week or so.

I stayed home last weekend and caught up on housework and thesis work. I feel more grounded and like I still have a chance of finishing the damn thing. I missed out on a camping and fly fishing trip, but I think it was well worth it. I feel like I have a grip on my sanity and anxiety again. It was starting to get out of control a bit, what with all the trips away from home and lack of time to work on the damn paper. (I skipped fly fishing! I HATE that.)


This weekend, I am supposed to accompany A. on a road trip to one of our favorite towns up north to visit with our friends J. and C. (J. is the one who just lost both his parents.) I really want to see them. I want to see their little 11-month-old girl. She is so adorable and fun. (Who am I? WTF?) We have plans to run around the most beautiful mountain range in the state. It is part theraputic, but also bittersweet. J. is going to be scouting the location to scatter the ashes of his parents. So, it is not really an escape, so much. I feel it is important to support him during this trip. A. will be there, regardless if I go. So, that makes me feel better.

I have two other very dear friends that live in the town that I can visit. A. and I have put this little town on our list of places we are trying to move.


I really, really think I should stay home and write. I don't want to exactly, but I think I should. I think I should take advantage of the momentum while I have it.

Maybe I can take my laptop, work in the car and maybe skip the actual trip to the mountains? Hang out with them over the weekend but take that afternoon or morning to work? Would that be a decent compromise? Gah.

I am so sick of missing out on life because of the The Thesis. I feel guilty that I am ignoring so many people in my life. The best way to get back into my life is to finish the fucker. Duh.

What do I do? What would you do? Advice, please.


  1. Man, this is a tough one. Does the compromise appeal to you or do you think that it will just make you feel like you aren't really part of the trip and also not as productive? If you think that staying home and plowing through work nonstop would help you really capitalize on the momentum, I would do that, and there will be other trips, and in the meantime A. will be there to support J.

    Good luck figuring out what to do!

  2. Take your laptop on your trip. You won't be missing out on anything and may be able to get some work done in a fresh environment. Go.

  3. Tough call. I wouldn't recommend trying to split the difference, though. I know myself, I'd wind up shorting myself on both fronts: I would be distracted when I'm with my friends and unproductive and resentful when I'm trying to work. (But do take a notebook or small recorder with you to make note of any ideas you have while you are away.)

    Not sure what your work situation is like, but could you take a week off---even if it had to be unpaid leave---to just get the thesis done?

  4. I'm kind of with Lisa. Momentum is important, and I'm all about maintaining momentum, usually, but this trip sounds really important to you. The kind of thing that would distract you even if you weren't on it. What you might do is bring the laptop ( I ALWAYS bring my laptop), but give yourself two or three very small, concrete tasks to accomplish on the thesis, so that your brain doesn't disconnect entirely--but you don't feel like you have to scurry away and hide for hours and hours.

    And then when you get back, take some time off work, unpaid if necessary, and give the thing the push in the pants it needs.

  5. I am also not a fan of splitting the difference, as both things feel short-changed. I'd go, I think, because this sounds important to you. I really like Melospiza's idea of choosing one or two discrete tasks to accomplish while you're there, and when they're done they're done, and if they don't get done you'll survive.

    But only you can say how rare the momentum you're feeling is and how important it is to capitalize on it. Could you stay home and schedule another trip up there in the near future, as a reward for finishing?

  6. So - update. Turns out this will be the trip to spread ashes. So, yeah. I am going and I am happy to do so.

    I like the idea of small, concrete tasks! You guys are awesome. I will make a list of a couple of small things I can accomplish on the laptop in the car. Then, the laptop hides and I am focused on being a friend.

    Thanks you guys. You are AWESOME.


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