While in the middle of a large forest it is difficult, if near impossible, to know exactly where one is. Unlike for example, a tunnel, there is no point of light to focus upon to guide one towards the boundary.
It is with great relief that my advisor has told me that I am in fact near a clearing. The analysis I have been working on has been deemed solid and meaningful. Very little more is needed to fill in the gaps. Now the task is for me to write it down and present it to my committee. Another step I have to take is to start applying for jobs. Just as the forest is one of my own design, the clearing (which isn’t clear at all) will also be my own doing.