I got an e-mail from my friend L. that said, “I realized I have been walking around with a chip on my shoulder, angry and mad that I ‘have to finish’ my dissertation.”
Oh, I know that feeling! It’s so easy to think that you’re only going forward because you’re trapped, or you’ve gone too far to turn back. It can start to seem like there’s no way out but through. That fate or God or the economy or your student loans won’t let you out of grad school.
But, as L. went on to say, it’s possible to let that anger go. To realize that you are finishing, ultimately, because you want to. Maybe you don’t want to finish all of the time, with every fiber of your being. But you are the one who is making yourself work–not because you’re a masochist but because you want it.