let the beat rock

January 28, 2011

first of all: girl talk report

not my photo . . . guess who forgot to bring her camera battery??! [source]
technical mishaps aside, i am happy to report that it. was. awesome!!

gregg gillis (aka: girl talk) put on an amazing show. basically, it was just a rockin’ dance party among friendly strangers (i am always proud of the NC audiences — good spirits + enthusiasm but not SO over the top/crazy that it’s scary). it was hot and sticky and we all just danced the whole time — to the point where going outside afterwards in tank tops felt GOOD (it was 20-some degrees out). i remarked to shelby (my date for the evening — i know, i’m a lucky woman!) that i’ve had tempo runs that were far less sweaty.

it was a fun night, because it reminded me that

■ i’m not THAT old (sometimes i feel like i am!!)

■ there are some benefits to:

— not having kids yet
— being in the lab with a more flexible schedule

don’t get me wrong – i’d trade concert experiences like this for a baby in a heartbeat! but while i’m waiting for nature (and, uhh, science) to take its course, i ought to try and enjoy myself. and i definitely did last night.

which brings me to a related point
i’ve been in (yet another) funk all week. if it seems to you like i’ve been a moody mess just in general lately — i’d be inclined to agree. i really do think some of it is hormone-related, but it’s also the fact that i’ve been on a research block (ie: time writing grants + in the lab) since january 1st and not only do i miss the clinical realm, but i am filled with a slowly mounting sense of dread/despair about spending the better part of the next two years in the lab.

i know — i SIGNED UP FOR THIS! and i still don’t regret it, because this path is necessary to get me to my ultimate career goal (ie: this one!). two years of research is required as part of the pediatric endocrine fellowship, and that’s that. non-negotiable. furthermore, i’ve already gotten started on what looks to me like a good project, in a good lab, working with good people.

but i’m just having trouble wrapping my mind around what i’ll actually be DOING for all of that time. i think i need to really work on getting past the mindset that it’s drudgery and try to embrace the positive aspects — of which there are many! these include:

there is a ton for me to learn. and therefore, it shouldn’t be boring — and i should (and will) try to embrace this whole experience as a growth opportunity, much like my time spent in med school on various rotations that i hated (ummm, surgery?) or my time in the PICU.

i get to plan out my own days! i need to get more excited about this — it’s a chance for me to delve even more into time management and productivity, and i can work on fine-tuning the way i approach big projects. furthermore, i get to take lunch when i want and get into work when i want (ie: a bit later the morning after a girl talk show).

i can have a life. if i am disciplined about working hard while i am in the lab on weekdays (and i have to confess that i have NOT been thus far — but this is about to change), then i can do a good job with my research in addition to enjoying an incredible amount of free time. we only take call one weekend/month on research months, so i will have time to write more, read more murakami, go to more concerts, and throw more dinner parties. all good things.

so there you have it — a self-written pep talk as i go in to extract RNA for what seems like the millionth day in a row (nah, it’s only the 4th). have you ever had to plow through a stage in your career similar to this — seemingly unrelated to your future career, but a mandatory step along the way? and to those of you in labs now: any tips for survival are welcome.

apparently, josh and i got married approximately 5 years too early . . .

because i SO would have picked an antho wedding dress!!
actually, i liked wearing a gown that was probably simpler than most of the options that my favorite shop will offer, but i still can’t wait to feast my eyes on the line.

happy weekend (or in my case, BEGINNING OF VACATION!!! i can’t wait – i think i need a week to regroup and think about the lab-related stuff above).

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