I miss this blog.
I miss the black and white, the fonts and titles, commenting, and hitting the “publish” button. Hanging out here feels like coming home from work, tossing the keys into the key bowl, and just sprawling on your cozy couch and taking a nap. It’s comfortable. A no-pants zone. It’s home.
The reason I have been MIA is that I started writing my dissertation. After six years of research and reading, I wrote the first ten pages. Five thousand words. I am no longer producing proposals, sales pitches, promises of what I will do somewhere down the line. I am writing. My ships and sailors and whales and harbors are coming together.
It might not sound like a big deal, but it is a very big deal to me. Everyone has their own m.o. when it comes to these things. There are people who write all the time, edit all the time, tweak and toss into the trash can all the time, and keep moving. Unfortunately, I cannot do that. I hate rewriting, I don’t really do drafts, and I only start writing when my thesis is absolutely clear in my head. Also, I admire my supervisor so much that I would never present her with anything short of a human sacrifice when it comes to mentoring my work.
I would be lying if I said that this little breakthrough occurred without the assistance of the universe. I pursued a few different paths in these last few months, which could have taken me in different directions. Some doors were closed (nah, this ain’t for you kiddo), and some opened with fanfare and fireworks, a stick of dynamite that blew the end of the tunnel out and kicked me in the ass. Go. Run.
Five months ago I was shifting books from one pile onto another, transcribing notes, printing and downloading, and feeling quite lost. I had scattered ideas and a collapsing structure, but no thesis. It was impossible not to notice that the six years of pure research and no productivity had coincided with the crisis in my personal life. Living with my parents again, freelancing instead of waking up every morning and going to an actual job like a decent person, my synapses were throbbing in a big neon sign, I AM NOT SUPPOSED TO BE HERE. I AM NOT SUPPOSED TO BE HERE. I AM NOT SUPPOSED TO BE HERE.
In ten days’ time, I will be presenting my newly minted ten pages to twenty other cultural transplants, heretics of nationalism and goofballs of transdisciplinarity, at one of the oldest universities in Germany. I won’t lie. I cried when I found out. It won’t be my first conference, and it won’t be the biggest thing I’ve ever done. But the timing of it… Holy crap, if that isn’t one big wink from the universe, telling me I am right back where I belong, right where I am supposed to be, I don’t know what is. And I will also go shamelessly ethnic on people’s asses by saying that I loved my lover for being an American when I shared this with him. I come from a hard-working family and have always had every possible kind of support in everything I did, but I swear to God, that loudmouthed, fearless, unadulterated FUCK YEAH of hard-earned, well-deserved success… No one knows how to celebrate the way Americans do. You guys rock.
So, in ten days’ time, I will be a travel bug again. I have been missing planes and airports and languages and exchanges, and I am so overdue for another international utopia moment. I also miss this blog, and I promise to write more soon.