I can’t believe it’s Viva eve!

30 Apr

Tomorrow is my PhD Viva-Voce.  It’s like I’ve been a bridesmaid so many times, but tomorrow it’s my turn to be the bride.1

I’ve dreamt about this for so long and often imagined what it would feel like. So how do I feel? I’m scared.  I’m scared I may forget to say something crucial. I’m scared I may say something stupid (because I know that will most definitely happen). I’m scared I will waffle terribly and not answer questions the way in which I should. I’m scared I may get emotional. I’m scared my examiners won’t like me or my research. I’m scared I don’t perform as well as I know I can.  Yet despite this, I’m excited. I’m excited I now have this opportunity to talk with three extremely successful and highly respected people in the field about my work. I feel honoured they have read my thesis (although much less honoured that they will have also read my awful typos and grammatical errors). I feel excited about being able to speak about the choices I made (and didn’t make) and the challenges I faced along the way. Lastly, I am excited to show how proud I am of this work, the opportunities that have arisen as a result and most importantly, how I feel it can have a real impact on clinical practice and patient care.

Today I took an annual leave day so my plan is:

  • Walk along the beach with my three dogs
  • Do a little more viva prep around methodological choices and discussion and application issues, then briefly read through my thesis one more time
  • Make some final notes in my thesis (which I am taking to my viva)
  • Go to the dentist for a scale and polish (very bad timing I know, but I’ve cancelled the last two appointments and I don’t like it when my dentist gets cross with me)
  • Lunch out with teenage daughter
  • Sort viva outfit
  • Insanity session at the gym
  • Bath, candles, relaxation and early night

So that’s pretty much my day. Thank you for all your support. I shall see you on the other side…



6 Responses to “I can’t believe it’s Viva eve!”

  1. Clarissa Sammut Scerri April 30, 2015 at 7:05 am #

    Lots and lots of good luck Emma! Uou have articulated a lot of my fears!!! My viva is at the end July! Do let us know how it fared and thank you so much for your posts! They were a great help along my journey!

    • Emma Burnett April 30, 2015 at 7:08 am #

      Thank you for your lovely comments Clarissa. I’m glad they helped. I will definitely post about my experience. Good luck with your Viva prep too – July is just around the corner 🙂

  2. adeeward April 30, 2015 at 12:48 pm #

    Hi Emma, I know you will be brilliant, enjoy today and this evening and enjoy tomorrow, I can’t wait to hear all about it. Being a bit scared is a good thing…. Keeps you in the edge. X

  3. silgtavares April 30, 2015 at 8:40 pm #

    Hi Emma! I’ve followed your blog for so long now and it is so nice to see you “getting there”! All the best tonight and enjoy this moment as much as you can. My viva has finally been arranged for 18th May, so all advice will be very welcome! All the best! xx

    • Emma Burnett May 4, 2015 at 8:35 am #

      Thank you Silvia for your lovely words. Your Viva is just around the corner now! I am quite sure you are going everything you should be doing. Everyone’s Viva is different, but I would say that as long as you know your work and you can defend the choices you made and the choices you didn’t, you will be fine. Also, expect questions you didn’t anticipate. Oh, and try to enjoy it! Good luck! x

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