On Tuesday I successfully defended my Ph.D. dissertation, and am now a doctor (of philosophy in biophysics, so I’m afraid I can’t write you prescriptions). Those of you who feel that me finally finishing my degree after nearly a decade is a sign of the apocalypse (and at points I counted myself among your number) should make your way to the bomb shelters. My public seminar and defense went well, and I only have a few revisions I need to make.
Later that night, I found that my girlfriend Bonnie had thrown together a surprise graduation party for me in the church basement, helped by many other people. I was completely surprised. I kept saying I’ve never felt so smart and so dumb in the same day. Many of my friends, coworkers, and family were there, and some traveled a long way to be there. Leslie, a friend of Bonnie’s and mine, put up some pictures on her blog.
Thank you to everyone who came, and thanks to those who couldn’t make it but passed along good wishes. Extra thanks to my sister Suzanne, who put together a very nice (albeit mildly embarrassing) slide show and a wonderful scrapbook for me, my family for driving such a long way in a such a short time to be there the whole day, and to Leslie and Renita for helping to prepare the party and taking wonderful pictures. And of course, enormous thanks to my lovely Bonnie, who deviously masterminded the whole thing. I love all of you.
This has been a very long journey, and I’m so happy and relieved (and in some ways, a little sad) that it is over. I am so grateful for all of you who have walked with me at various phases of the trip. I couldn’t have done it without you.