These last few weeks of my life have made me a manic-depressive kind of guy. I am still involved in the same activities that I was involved in a few months ago but some of them are drawing to a close. With the end of my time at Oxford, I am going to enter a new phase in life and the transition is anything but easy.
I only have a few weeks left to finish the lab work for my PhD. I’ve been working on it for the last three years. All this time I’ve had one target molecule to prepare. Never before have I worked on a single project for so long and given it so much of my time, energy, enthusiasm and passion.
“Chemistry will test your patience”, said a very wise guy very early on in my days in the lab. Like every PhD student, I’ve had my ups and downs but with the clock ticking every result I get these days seems to make me ecstatic or really angry. On the good days, I have so much energy that hours spent in the lab feel like minutes but on the bad days every minute feels like an hour.
As such the whole experience is quite exhausting and nothing but tons of motivation helps me get through it. The usual trick of drawing that much motivation from many sources still works but the well seems to dry sooner every time. Matters are only made worse by the mood swings.
One moment I love what I do and the other I hate it. When I try to analyse the reasons for why this is happening, I am almost always left confused. I was telling this to a friend of mine when she said, “It’s always like this in the end. You almost want to hate it so you won’t miss it.” And may be she is right. May be it is a coping mechanism.
The only thing I seem to be sure about is that this frustrating phase is doing nothing to help me finish. May be when I look back on it a year from now, it won’t seem as bad as it does now. Right now though, this love-hate thing is very annoying.