When one door closes..

Recently, I heard that phrase used by a former vice-presidential candidate. However, I'll try not to hold that against this post.

I haven't done a lot of door shutting or opening this year as far as my science is concerned. I've done a bit more with regards to my personal life, though.

The biggest things that happened this year are that Dr. Man came home and that my dissertation research is in full swing. Those are both wonderful things, but they're difficult to have together. Prior to him moving home, I could go home from the lab, eat, play with the Dixie Dog, and then come back to the lab to work some more. Also, if I spent hours in the lab on the weekends, eh, it wouldn't matter. Those weren't the healthiest of habits, but it allowed me to take three day weekends every other week to travel to ResidencyTown.

Now, he's home and it's a bit of an adjustment. My advisor is pretty flexible about face time and he allows us to set our own schedules. So it's up to me to decide to come in and what work to get done. That means that if a protocol is time sensitive and requires work on a Saturday, it's up to me to make myself come in to the lab. That's hard for Dr. Man to understand. There's rarely a time where he gets a choice about what hours to work (the clinic has normal operating hours). And when he works weekends it's because he's on-call, not because he knows that a few hours on a Sunday will save an entire days worth of work.

That's not to say that Dr. Man is an over-bearing tyrant or anything. It's closer to a puzzled look when I tell him that I'm willingly going into work on Sunday (ramping up to incredulous when I wake up in the middle of the night to go check on-- or start-- some experiment). And I feel guilty when I choose to take time away from my personal life to spend time on my work life.

To finish the above metaphor: The door has closed on the obsessive (and unhealthy?) work habits, but a door has opened to the possibility of being happy in grad school.