ROS, Calcium Overload and Brain Infarct…you know what that means…


Yes, it’s that time of year again…no I don’t mean summer holidays, I mean cracking the whip and completing my dissertation. 15ooo words feel more daunting now then ever, and with less than two weeks to go until my submission deadline; I’m surprisingly apathetic. Now it’s hard for me to recall the events of two years ago, when I found myself in a distinguishably similar position…but I managed to pull through from that; so this can’t be so bad, right? I mean less than two weeks left and I’m still a good 12000 words behind…not too bad, right? Oh, who am I kidding! That’s awful, that is! And I think it’s just hit home right now…that I have a mammoth incline ahead of me and whole bunch of very sharp looking rock below…not fun. It shouldn’t be so hard writing my dissertation, it really shouldn’t. Especially as this time, I actually did the work and I’m writing a research paper and not just a review summarising other people’s work. This should be a bit of a walk in the park (a bit like writing my blog…smile!), and if not a walk, then definitely a casual stroll. But as with the familiarity that comes with finding myself writing a thesis…also comes the procrastination and the lack of motivation. Sort of like the calcium overload and ROS generation that comes with reperfusion following ischaemia. And this time, I can’t even say that I don’t like the topic…because I genuinely do, but it’s really difficult to push through…especially because it’s hard and it matters! The basis of my PhD depends on this…my entire research career stems from this 15000 babble of words and figures. That’s big. No, that’s huge. And perhaps affiliating such a marked stance to my MSc dissertation is one hurdle in my path to completion.

And as I sit hit here in the Hub, in this bizarre ‘pod’…which can only be described as some sort of train pod replica (…my own thoughts, not the architects); with a sore bottom, because the bench is not at all comfortable…all I think about is how I’d love to be back at Warwick again. The comfortable seats, the spot that I’d dubbed all for myself…the atmosphere which inspires you to work harder than you’ve ever before, the comfort of knowing that a friendly smile will just be around the corner (my VERY precious prayer hall and buddies)…it all feels like a distant memory. One which induces tears. So bearing in mind that I’m actually sitting in public here…I’ve got to curb those tears. *Sad face*

All of that aside…I really do have to finish my dissertation, and for the most part I think I’ll be able to do it (iA). So a reminder of what I’ve done and what I need doing:

  • So I’ve got a draft of a very rubbish Methods section (which has been looked at…though not with a fine comb, like I’d hoped)
  • I’ve almost completed the draft of my Introduction section (just 3 more subsections and the Aims left)
  • I’ve compiled all of the figures which I’ve derived from my data and statistically annotated those and put them into a document entitled ‘Results’

And so far, that’s it. So what I need to do:

  • Need to add text to my Results section
  • Need to start my Discussion (the longest and probably the most gruelling of all the sections)
  • I need to write an Abstract, approximately 250 words
  • Then lastly, I need to have everything put together and proofed; but before that I also need to add a ton of figure legends and format my layout!

Lots to do. Achievable? Sure, why the heck not! Achievable by Thursday of this week? Hmm, let me get back to you on that.

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