I wonder sometimes if there is something I need to learn about my choices in the people I have around me. Or is it just really bad luck that both my Master's and PhD advisors turned out to be the wrong person for me? And right at the most crucial point, in both cases, is when I realized it- and that is too late. The funny part is, they are complete opposite personalities. A main reason I picked #2 after my experience with #1.
Now I go to others to get help- wonderful people with busy schedules. People who care about me, but also have their own students, lives and work.
My life sometimes reminds me of the Dead lyric "when life looks like easy street, there is danger at your door" So, I got my dream job- a post doc in Montana, working for a great guy, in a nice lab, that is well organized, productive and doing cool work. This is after going to a meeting and giving a good talk, getting an award for up-and-coming young scientist, and also getting tapped to go to an NSF meeting in DC to represent my fellowship program.
I get back, and everything seems like it is going well. I have a committee meeting, there is a lot of work to do to finish by the end of the summer, but we all agree it is possible, that we just have a lot of work to do in the next few months. I set a schedule, and then let my family know that I will indeed be walking in graduation ceremony and we have great time and I am on top of the world.
I meet my deadline for the first rough draft, and send files of the data we need to look at. No word. Then I cajole and beg, and we finally all get together as a lab and have lunch. The bomb drops. Chaos ensues. Since June advisor literally drops off the face of the planet.
So, I keep telling myself that I move on, and pick myself up by the bootstraps, I'm good enough, I'm smart enough, etc. etc. etc. But some days it's really hard. Today is one of those. Because things are looking up- I've got a great committee that is stepping up, I got a fellowship from the grad college to help pay the bills so i don't have to work, I found a quiet study carrel in the library to work. And that has me worried.
Am I so jaded that I can't relax anymore? I think maybe I am just so angry that I am toxic to myself. I think I should take up kickboxing. Scream therapy?
Voices and Perspectives from the Past: Memoirs of Scientists and Departmental Histories - by Daniel P. Haeusser | I started a draft of this post while sitting out on the Memorial Union lakeside terrace at the University of Wisconsin Madison. It ...
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