Today I mailed Advisor a copy of the new chapter that I've been drafting. I know that this is the right time to send it to her and that the project will benefit both from being set aside for a while and from getting an outside read--and since I actually have to set the thing aside for six weeks in order to finish up two unrelated projects, it makes total sense to use that time to get her feedback.
But I had a serious meltdown over the weekend wherein I became convinced that I couldn't send it to her because it wasn't good enough or smart enough, and because it loses its argument a number of times and jumps around and has too many long quotations and doesn't have a conclusion and no doubt makes a number of breathtakingly stupid claims about both the author and the decades I'm covering (which represent basically new material for me).
I knew that there was no point in my putting in another two months to give the thing more polish, since what I really wanted her advice on was the big-picture stuff--but I have a hysterical insecurity about showing her anything less than perfect, lest she get so hung up on the little things that she not see the big-picture stuff (and so conclude I'm a moron).
Now, it's true that the above is actually a pretty accurate description of our first meeting to discuss the first draft of my dissertation's very first chapter--and thus constitutes, I guess, something of a Primal Scene--but my neurotic fear of letting anyone see anything that truly is a work-in-progress didn't begin with her, and I know that my obsession with that one episode in our relationship (and the way I've allowed it to define our relationship ever since) has more to do with the shit in my own head than with how she's actually responded to me and my work in the years since then.
So I'm trying to work through this, and sending her this chapter is one way of doing that. There may be no way to prevent myself from freaking the fuck out on my own time, but I don't want those freakouts to affect my ability to get work done or to seek advice when I need it.
That being said--y'all are still welcome to send your good wishes, or a gift certificate for some CBT, or a big bottle of whiskey, or whatever, my way.