09 November 2009
Today I Broke
Nope, I'm not crying. At least not in this picture.
It's nearing the end of fall semester, third year in and I have yet to have cried over a professor's feedback. I've taken classes with some of the most difficult profs in my department, submitted papers where I was unsure of what I was doing, spelled out my ignorance about this topic and that with glaring clarity. And never once have I cried.
There has always been something to be learned, something I've done well enough to warrant revisiting the writing a second time. There's always been something redemptive about the feedback I've received from my professors, regardless of how crappily I laid out my argument or splotchy my literature. I've never had a professor tell me my writing is sloppy and nothing more.
Honestly, I don't quite know what to do here. Were the assignment something polished, rather than a working draft, I would understand the comment. But it is a working draft and while there are sections of the paper that are sloppy, I felt my epistemology and theoretical underpinnings were solid. I don't think I'm someone who needs coddling but I am here to learn. Nothing comes out of feedback that is meant to belittle and gives no direction for positive change. Teach me.
Today, I cried. Her feedback, my apparently sloppy writing, broke me. Today, after seven semesters, countless papers, and eleven sections of teaching, graduate school broke me. I'll mend but, for today, I just want to wallow.