Thoughts on Completing a Master’s Dissertation


I was literally writing my dissertation right up to the night before it had to go off to the printer’s.

And prior to this, I spent about a week, locked up in the study from 3:30pm to early hours in the morning, writing, re-writing and translating last bits of text for my dissertation. It was really last minute attempts I wish it didn’t come to this (but that’s for another post).

During this one week, I did not read to my daughter at bedtime and did not lay down with her to sleep, as is our daily routine. When I was absolutely knackered and started falling asleep at my computer, I got up, left the study and crept into her bed to fall asleep. In the morning, we got up, ate breakfast and I sent her off to school. I saw her for about a total of 1.5 hours on those days. My husband was stellar in playing up both roles of mummy and daddy. And without him, I’m not sure if I would have been able to complete my dissertation. (Thanks, H)

After my dissertation, relief was an understatement but I was also extremely bored of my research (not the field of study), much to my surprise. I wonder if this is normal. After the initial relief, I packed away all my papers and books and kept them out of sight and hoped that I wouldn’t have to re-look at anything (the examining committee gets back with feedback 2 months later).

My happiest moments, besides having a normal life back, was reading non-research related books again. I allowed myself to sleep well for a week–bedtime giggles, books and cuddles with my daughter and dinners with the family, before the resumption.

Then it was back to lecturing, prepping slides for lectures, marking student essays, re-reading my conference paper submissions and preparation for Phd applications– all these up until the wee hours of the night, but after bedtime stories with my daughter. 🙂


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