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.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Chemo Report #2

So pretty much recovered from Chemo infusion #2 of 4, before switching to a different drug. Better than the last time, but still not my favorite thing to do. Basically down for 2-3 days, then able to work after that.

Apart from the chemo, my research is really kicking into gear. I got contacted by *another* company interested in licensing my technology, for a home pregnancy test no less. More exciting research results have been rolling in. Is it not a little bit troubling that my lab seems to run itself better when I am gone half the time?

Actually one possible contributing factor to this success may be the promotion and hiring of a postdoc to a research scientist position. I have dumped off a lot of the day to day administration to him and this seems to help my own productivity tremendously. Plus, my students have a contact point that is available pretty much constantly to resolve small lab issues. All in all things are good...

Saturday, April 09, 2011

Chemo Report #1

So nearly 2 weeks ago I had my first chemo infusion. It went a lot better than I thought. I was pretty tired for the first 2-3 days but then progressively better until the last few days I have actually felt nearly as good as before my surgery. In fact, felt so good I went to work everyday this week. So, I guess moral of the story is that chemo does not keep you from working.

Downsides, yes I am tired and I do have to rest sometimes. We are putting a sofa in my office to facilitate this. A major effort to move all the furniture around and I am grateful to everyone involved. Also, they give you steroids to keep your immune system up while you are doing chemo and unfortunately the high doses made me so ADHD I couldn't concentrate on anything for more than 5 minutes. I can't be sure having never tried it, but have to imagine it is akin to being on speed or something, while at the same time being drunk (tired). Kind of a weird feeling.

The most ironic thing of all of this is that this is the time that my research has chosen to take off. I just got tenure. we published our second very high impact paper this year. People have been really excited about it. I have been featured in several news articles and was recently on a podcast talking about this work. Two different companies have commercial interest in the technology. Apart from that, all of experiments seem to be coming together right now and data is flying out of my lab. All good things of course, but ironic that this is all happening while I am somewhat sidelined. I guess when you set up a good lab system, it really can run itself for awhile.

Hit Counter by Digits Who links to my website?