Dr. Mom, My Adventures as a Mommy-Scientist

Discussion of my journey from grad school to postdoc to tenure with two kids, a husband, (and a bit of breast cancer) in tow.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Arrived at R1U town!!!

Gosh, I'm sorry I haven't written for so long, but I have been in the processing of moving so that I can start my job at R1U (research 1 university). I am so excited. We have been here about two weeks, are about 3/4 of the way unpacked, and are getting settled in. The last weeks were crazy for me. I was trying to finish all my experiments at my postdoc, which more or less panned out. Also, I agreed to write a review article that was due at the end of the month. It was fairly short, but I spent most of the last week and half finishing that up [in addition to unpacking!].

The worst part of the whole thing was probably my daughter. She has known that we would be moving since starting my postdoc two years ago. But somehow, the move came as a shock to her. She was very depressed for the last few weeks in Boston. She didn't want to leave her friends and teachers behind. She stopped eating and spent most of her time moping. She is only 4! I felt absolutely terrible, but what could I do? The good news is that we spent the week of the move with family and this really cheered her up. She is much better now and looking forward to starting summer camp next week, but it was really difficult. It really makes me think about any future moves. I plan on staying where I am at least until tenure, but I was leaving the door open after that. Now I am not so sure. It is very difficult to balance the demands of family with those of your career. But that's a good 6 or 7 years away so I'm not too concerned now.

I went into work last week. I don't officially start until next month, but they asked me to come for an site review. It was really neat because I got a chance to see what everyone else was working on. The coolest thing was that everyone seemed to know me [and vice versa]. This isn't too surprising because the review was in my area and the faculty from R1U have met me several times over the last year. But it was neat to see that the outside faculty knew me (or my work at least) as well. It was a real confidence booster. I am so excited about starting. I have lots of ideas for research, teaching, and outreach. Can't wait.


At 1:06 PM , Blogger SciMom said...

As a mommy/scientist who moved a 3.5 year old and a 1.5 year old I can tell you that preparation is good but doesn't compensate for all the stress, changes and emotions involved in a move. Children are infinitely better at adapting than we know. It's a process. It took my children 8 months to settle in to their new routines. A year and a half later, they are happy in their preschools and home, and we are feeling part of the community. The only time I would personally think twice about moving with kids would be a year or two before they enter high school. We will either move before that or after they graduate.


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