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No going back – and thanks for the company

The purpose in setting up this blog, over four years ago now, was to have a place to track my doctoral journey and to share some of my ideas and things I was reading. Over time, it had focused increasingly on the journey and, in particular, on the ups and downs of the rollercoaster that has been my personal journey.

Yesterday was a landmark day – it was the day when I handed over three copies of my thesis for examination. Anybody who has read this blog will know that even a week ago I was questioning whether I would actually make it to this point, as I fought and quibbled yet again with doing what was expected of me. At this point I want to say a huge thanks to all my friends, colleagues and acquaintances inhabiting #phdchat – so often you’ve picked me up and dusted me down, put a virtual coffee mug in my hands and helped me see the way forward. Sometimes you have given me a good talking to – seeing it was the child in me refusing to play the game – and at other times you have shared your own experiences of similar issues and how you dealt with them. I will never meet most of the folk I have got to know so well, but nevertheless #phdchat is a living community and I am just so glad it has come into being during my doctoral journey and been there for me.

I am now entering the next phase – the waiting game until the examination and whatever verdict there will be.

For the moment, I am trying to get used to not having to get up and think, write, produce. In some ways my position is enviable. I am at least semi-retired – I still work a little for the Open University – which means my time is my own. At the same time, I have things I want to do, things I want to write, things I want to be involved in – some are pursuing my research and academic interests, but others are the things that have been on ice – my lacemaking, leisure reading, homemaking…

I can’t move backwards – none of us ever can – so here’s to the journey ahead!

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