Wednesday, November 16, 2011


Is it really mid-November already?  When did that happen?

I can't believe how fast this year has sped by.  One minute I'm starting work on writing my Ph.D. thesis, and the next I'm facing another impending Christmas season in a completely different town......with a completely different job.....and a very different life in general, really.

I don’t really want to go into it too much, but I have been dealing with family-related stuff all summer and fall.  The amount of stress has really been ridiculous; although the fundamental setup of my daily life hasn't changed, pretty much everything else has.  Priorities have changed; for the short-term, life is much more uncertain than it was, too.  I can’t begin to describe the guilt: if I am at work, I’m not home, and if I’m home, I’m not working enough.  Not to mention taking care of myself – I haven’t done much of that lately.  Now, I know this is all stuff that working mothers deal with all the time – but I’m not a working mother (yet), and I have to hope that that stress is either less intense, or gets more bearable as time goes on.  For me, right now, the feeling that my life is imploding is the most identifiable emotion in recent memory.  Something had to give – and apparently, that something is me.

I’m now working on finding a postdoc somewhere closer to home.  The hope is that by getting rid of my 1-2 hour commute (each way!), I will be making time for both home and work obligations.  Right now, if I want to work an 8-hour workday (which is really short for a scientist), I am gone from home for up to 12 hours.  By working closer to home, I will be able to work 11 hours if I’m gone from home for 12 – and there is also the potential to work a bit less than that and have more home time.  My schedule will be more flexible – coming in at night or on weekends isn’t out of the question if it’s only a 25 minute drive.  There is a nagging voice in the back of my head telling me that I’m giving up – but really, I’m making a decision to salvage my career and preserve my home life.

What this all means is, I am a bit of a mess right now.  Trying to find somewhere to go, trying to close things up around here….it’s pretty overwhelming.  I will be around as much as possible, and I am keeping up on blogs pretty well (but not commenting as much).  And I should be back soon – things will settle down some time!  But if I am a bit scattered for now, please understand that my life is currently under construction.