ICE ICE BABY
I have been busy in the lab churning through my frozen cell pellets.
Can you believe there’s only just over 5 weeks left in the year?!
There are still so many experiments I plan on doing in the next few weeks, manuscripts I desperately need to pump out.
Sometimes I wish I could freeze time like I can freeze my cells, just chuck em in the -80 and deal with them when I’m ready.
*sigh* if only it was that easy.
I have no doubt I’ll make this last bit of the year the most productive yet- and I’m still scheduling in time to exercise and socialise so I don’t burn out or turn into a depressed little science blob.
What are your goals before the end of the year?
There’s no fear like the fear that comes when your advisor tells you she wants a complete draft of your diss proposal on Monday when you’re both attending a conference social at 10pm on Saturday night and you know your stressed ass will be in airports and planes all day Sunday and if you think I’m panic captioning right now you are absolutely correct 😅😅 #youdontwannagetwithdiss#dissertationproposal#gradschoolproblems#phdlife
I’ve had symptoms of anxiety and depression sporadically since I was 13 but managed for most of my life. Then just 1 month into grad school, I began having nightly panic attacks. I was diagnosed with general anxiety disorder, social anxiety, and depression. Year 1 was rough as I struggled to find where I fit in this new place and environment while also attempting to balance coursework and research.
Year 2 was much better: my labmate and I established a system with our most trustworthy undergrads, and I excelled in classes and felt like I was finally getting somewhere. Then a week after I passed my qualifying exams, right before my 3rd year began, my PI told me that he would be leaving the university. So I had some decisions to make: did I want to transfer labs and continue in my program, did I want to transfer programs or schools, or did I even want to finish my PhD?
After weeks of meetings with faculty and the program coordinator, I was offered a spot in the lab of a PI I wanted to work with but who was rumored to be heading for retirement. She hadn’t taken a new student since 2014, so it never crossed my mind that she would be willing to take me. That’s not to say it’s been an easy transition: I’ve gone from testing 10 rats at a time in automated operant chambers to interviewing pregnant women and moms and doing cognitive testing with babies and 4-year-olds. Before this, I’d never done human research. I struggled to get up to speed and establish a new normal. Not long after my transition, my grandmother passed away, and I was devastated. It made it even more difficult to establish a new normal.
I did have some good news: my former labmate and close friend defended her dissertation and secured a postdoc, and my fiance got into medical school...but that meant that they would both leave. I often feel like I’m screwing everything up and disappointing my new PI. Some days, I love what I do, but others, I consider looking at job postings and leaving this all behind.
A mix of colors, textures, and details that makes this foggy Monday feel a little brighter. I have a busy but short week ahead, feeling “fine, everything’s fine,” about it. Hope yours is off to a good start.
// @everlane Cocoon coat, peat //
// @atolyeren grandma sweater //
// @agolde Riley, Hideaway //
// @toast X @solovairuk jade derby boots //
// @itsgldn jewelry //