Making myself sick

I can’t believe myself.  It has been so difficult for me to get serious about finishing my thesis. Every time I get going I let something stop me.

A couple nights ago I finally buckled down and stayed up till 1 am or so working on the section that I will submit TOMORROW for the anthology compiled of all graduating students’ work.

The next day I was sick all day.  I actually went home from the office.  I think it was partly the apnea that has plagued me since I gained weight, but it also just felt like I can’t handle pressuring myself anymore.  It’s like being out of shape (which I am).  I didn’t feel well the next day either, and today I actually had a fever.  Maybe they’re not all connected.  I feel like I’m not up to the stress of “cramming” like I was when I was in college, which was actually in 2002.  Yes, I got my bachelor’s degree at the age of 41.  While I completed it I worked two jobs.  I had energy for everything, although one significant difference was that I had classes with syllabi and homework and grades, whereas the MFA is all on my own.

I have to get in shape – in every way, including writing.

My next deadline is tomorrow, when I must email the excerpt for the anthology.  I am trying to follow the advice I’ve read about avoiding procrastination, including setting very small goals for completing very small tasks.  That’s how I decided what to submit for the anthology and how I’ve worked on it this week.

I’m taking leave from work from June 3-12 in order to finish the thesis, and hopefully during that time I will get “in shape” and staying up late writing won’t actually make me sick.  I have a lot of work ahead of me.

I turn my back on my writing – literally

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

I am writing this with my back to my iMac using my wireless keyboard, my feet up on my bed and my mind unclouded by anything on the computer screen that might distract me – I hope.

I love to write. I have (almost) two masters degrees in writing. Everything over the past decade has pointed me in the direction of writing. So why is it so difficult? why do I find so many reasons not to write, but instead to surf, to Tweet, to read others’ Tweets, to do the New Yorker online jigsaw puzzle?

I am enjoying writing with my back to the computer. I wouldn’t use this technique for my actual thesis – I could never ever forgive myself if I messed up the formatting or structure or anything else that the formal document contains.  But I could work on portions in a new, blank document, then turn around and see what I’ve got.  I wonder how far I would get.

I am, however, getting distracted by how blue the veins are on the inner sides of my feet, and how soon I should consider shaving my legs.  As long as the cat doesn’t wander in meowing I should be okay.

Let’s see…I have been struggling with being oh so close to finishing the section of my thesis that starts with me in UU (Unitarian-Universalist) camp at 14.  What I want to do is incorporate the history of these UU camps, perhaps even the Unitarian church itself, as a theology and a social phenomenon.  I just haven’t yet found the way to make it all fit together.  Should I even do it?  I at least want to discuss the history and development of UU youth groups.

Maybe with my back to the computer I will better figure out the parts of my research that have relevance to my personal UU experience. Did you know that Unitarianism has its roots in 16th-century Poland and Transylvania?  Isn’t that interesting as hell?  The question is how we get from Poland in the 1500s to a 20th-century summer camp.

I turn my back on writing! Let’s go.