Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Onwards

Thanks to everyone for the concern, supportive comments, and welcome advice.

My brother, as you might expect, is still in the hospital, but things seem to be going well for his health overall. I think the healing is slow, and that's frustrating for him, but in a lot of ways he was really lucky. He'll have several more surgeries before he's through, and the therapy will be arduous, but they expect that he'll be able to walk again which is a blessing.

As for me.. they did in fact offer me the position. For slightly more money than I'm making now (which isn't saying much). I spent 5 days crying and wrestling with my options. In the end, the decision came down to a choice between what I wanted to do (take the low-stress student service job) and what I felt I should do (stay at my postdoc and keep my options open for the future).

So I turned down the job.

But... I don't intend for the next year to be business as usual. I've got my feelers out and I've already lined up a few side projects to help beef up my CV and to get some exposure to "alternative" science careers. One editing project, a writing project, and an opportunity to do some work for a tech transfer consulting firm. All of this will of course be done in my abundant spare time (note: italics indicate extreme sarcasm). It'll be hectic for awhile... i.e. I'm actually increasing my stress load instead of decreasing my stress load... but I think it's important for me to really explore my options instead of just giving up on finding a place for myself in science.

Of the many important lessons that came out my most recent semi-annual career crisis (or SACC, if you will): I have a freaking amazing husband. Husband was so supportive, let me talk through all of my worries and stress and never once tried to tell me what to do or to quit whining... He took my concerns seriously. He let me cry it out. He let me scream it out. And with his usual pacific demeanor talked me rationally through all the pros and cons of the 30 different career options I threw at him over the last 10 days. And when the dust settled and I was in (virtually) the exact same position I was before all of this chaos ensued, he brought me flowers and made me dinner.

My husband rules.

9 comments:

Candid Engineer said...

Sounds like an awesome husband. Mine can get a bit impatient with my constant career indecision. You are totally not alone in your fits of crying and screaming.

I am glad that you decided to keep your options open... it might be frustrating in the meantime, but you will probably appreciate it later on. I would be interested to know how you came across your extracurricular editing projects, etc.

Jenn said...

Sounds like it was a tough decision, but the right one for you right now. How wonderful to have someone so supportive of you! My husband and I both suffer from career indecision and we often end up turning each other in circles...
I'm glad your brother is making a recovery. I can't even imagine how stressful the past weeks must have been for you.

drdrA said...

Great husbands are a rare thing. :-)

Also- you know, making a career decision right now, doesn't dictate the rest of your life. Do what you think is right for you for the moment... and if you don't like it- know that you have the power to change course...

You have no idea how I see myself about 10 years ago in your posts...it is just scary.

EcoGeoFemme said...

I hope these other things turn out to be cool and that you find plenty of time to do it all. it sounds like you made the best decision for you. I hope you let us know how it goes. I'm very interested in how you like the nonbench work.

hypoglycemiagirl said...

Congratulations on the decision - I know it's not easy. Science is a great place to be if you can find out where you belong!

And also way to go finding an excellent husband!

ScienceMama said...

HGG, that's my new motto. I'm stealing it.

The bean-mom said...

I'm glad to hear you've got your feelers out there, and have already lined up some consulting/editing projects to better explore non-bench options. You sound like you're strategizing and taking control of your career, not just drifting passively along!

Good luck with everything. I'm glad to hear your brother's doing better. And that husband of yours? He sounds like an utter doll!

ScienceGirl said...

It's great that you'll be trying a few things out; I hope finding the time to do it is easier than it looks now. Your husband sounds like a great support throughout stressful times!

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