vacations

mynlieffm at vms.csd.mu.edu mynlieffm at vms.csd.mu.edu
Tue Mar 11 18:31:32 EST 1997


In article <199703111447.IAA11615 at mail.utexas.edu>, linden at MAIL.UTEXAS.EDU (linden higgins) writes:
>Susan Forsburg wrote:
>[snip]
>>
>>
>>Their PI, on the other hand, just returned after 5 days away,
>>her first vacation in 3 years.
>>
>
>
> After years of working late & weekends (yes, I have data from Christmas
>day from just about every year of my dissertation research), I've decided
>to do things differently.  I still love science, but I have an 8 mo old
>daughter, (yet again) a new course to teach (temporary instructors don't
>get to pick & choose), and chronic sleep deprivation.  I can't bring myself
>to brush off my teaching responsibilities, I can't bring myself, after
>having Gailin in day care all day every day during the week, to leave her
>with a sitter on weekends, and I MUST pick her up by 5:30 pm in the
>afternoon.  So, now I work 40 hr weeks. Does all this make me a lesser
>scientist? - I think not!  I just have different priorities.  And the
>adjustment has been very difficult:  I often lay awake with anxiety attacks
>after the 1 am feeding (and yes, we have tried to break her of this one -
>she is honestly hungry), wondering if I'll ever be considered for another
>job if I don't get another publication out this year.


I think that there is often an attitdue of "I walked 10 miles to school in a
snow storm and so should you".  I agree with this poster and others saying that
with or without kids there are other things in life.  For what it is worth, I
have a tenure track position (I'm in my fourth year) as well as a 2 year old, a
6 year old and crazy me, another baby on the way.  I don't think that my
publication record is any worse than my contempories from grad school or post
doc years (mostly men and many without kids).  I recently received word that
NIH has finally decided to fund my FIRST award so they are obviously happy with
my progress.  I do not work 70 hours a week.  I rarely work weekends or
evenings unless a grant deadline is approaching or I run behind grading papers
or preparing lectures.  Before kids I did put in more hours but not crazy
amounts.  I skiied and hiked.  Two hobbies which have been put on hold -
something had to give I guess.  When the kids are older I hope to get back into
these things because they can participate along with my husband and I.  I
actually had a post-doc reprimand me in the public library once for reading a
novel while I was a grad student!!  Get a life!  And, no, I do not have a stay
at home  husband.  He helps but I will admit I do more of the kid related stuff
than he does.  

Michelle




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