I'm rewriting my thesis. All the parts exist (except for a conclusion, and it's not like that's important...), but they don't flow, and there are still gaps in the literature that need plugging. I'm hoping to get a complete draft ready before the end of semester, which is about ten or so weeks away. For someone who only works two days a week... Well, it's not a whole lot of time, even with my weekend tinkering thrown in.
Still, it will be done.
Someone asked me a couple of days ago if my thesis matched up to my expectations: was it better, worse or about par with what I had thought it would be. I quickly realised that I don't really know. Partly because it's still a bit much to take in at once to really make any kind of call - individually I know all the chapters are ok, although could be much better, but it takes a bit of effort to step back and see the thing as a whole.
But the main reason I don't know is that I've never really had a realistic expectation for what sort of a thesis it will be, or what kind of a scholar I could be. I have expected that when examiners' reports come in, they will either be hand-quilled in golden ink with lucrative publication contracts stapled to them; or tattooed to the backs of rabid dogs, the whole-hearted rejection of my work coupled together with demands for my existing degrees to be revoked as well. In my saner moments I realise that neither of those things is going to happen.
So, clearly, the thesis itself isn't the only thing that needs work. As I buff and polish my argument I try to negotiate with myself along the way, reminding myself the thesis isn't actually a measure of my worth as a person, and that it isn't going to be awful, and it isn't going to be great - but it will be good enough.