today (thismorning at 9am precisely) is the beginning of prelim exams. I've heard people compare these exams (9 days of writing your brains out in response to prompts on all the things your phd has supposed to have taught you thus far) to climbing a very tall and arduous staircase. it's not easy, but it isn't going to kill you if you can just keep going. you've learned all this stuff, and you wouldn't be here if you weren't brilliant enough to write these exams.
hopefully this will be a metaphorical staircase with some curve to it, and neat art hanging along the way. hopefully it doesn't get dark. hopefully there are not cobwebs.
I'm going to make myself an awesome breakfast, put my hair up for good luck, log out of all my email accounts and all the social media places, make sure I have notebooks and pens for scribbly brainstorming sessions, and get to campus early. I'll be climbing this prelim staircase til next Thursday, so please pardon my absence from all the other staircases and rooms and hallways of life for now. I'll come back down when it's over.