27 and a PhD

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I moved

Welcome to my blog!

Hello there, awesome reader. My name is Dr. 27. I'm older than that now, but I'm staying faithful to the origins of the blog.

This blog started 2 months before completing my PhD in a pretty southern university back in 2009. It was a way to practice my writing and take a break from all things thesis. My PhD is in a branch of structural biology where I studied some rather impressive stuff.

After completing the degree, I packed my life of 6 years in 3 days and moved to Canada to do a postdoc in a completely different field. Two years later, and after attending a lot of seminars, workshops and doing some much-needed soul-searching, I ended up getting out and looking for an alternative path to academia and industry.

The blog chronicles my mishaps, ideas, musings and tips on entering, staying and finishing grad school. It also talks about some (or a lot) of personal stuff. For a while, the blog became a place to talk about the frustrations of not knowing what to do after PhD. I wanted to explore alternatives to the traditional paths of research (academia, industry and goverment) whilst going back to my field of training (if at all possible). Eventually a job materialized. Follow my quest as I navigate the waters of being a staff scientist at a core facility.

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No, not web address. I moved. I left hell-hole city and lab and boss and I moved.

I was able to negotiate terms with my new institution back at the start of September and by mid-September I was closing shop. I got to say goodbye to my kids (students), fellow lab members, and some of the PIs I worked with. Even after the insane boss said I was a disgrace (I’m paraphrasing), I had students, postdocs, and PIs dropping by, saying goodbye and thanking me for the work I did for them. From preliminary results, to bits of kickass data to put into grants and incorporate in paper revisions. I trained my peeps to know as much as I did before I left and I have yet to receive an angry email or text from my former institution that says that I broke something or that people broke a machine.

How do I feel? I am relieved. I feel like a HUGE burden has lifted off my shoulders. I feel that I can be who I am at my new job and that people don’t judge me harshly. I’m starting to find a niche. I’ve met with my boss and the best thing is that I don’t have a PI on top of me. I do help a couple of PIs, but they have little to no input on what I do. This means that there’s one less layer of control over me when compared to my previous job.

I’ve gone hiking, checked out the food scene (pretty good), and have seen hubby on a regular basis. I’ve been told by my direct boss to not leave the lab too late (what the hell!!!??? When has this ever happened?), have been invited or introduced to fancy pants speakers, and have been consulted on presentations and data for one of the main labs I’ll be helping out. My position is *FINALLY* not tied to a PI, though it is government funded, thus if there’s an asshole shutdown, I’ll be without a salary for however long it takes to resolve it.

I moved. I found a place to live (not in the same city as my Mr, because his offer came WAY before mine and he made living arrangements when we thought I’d stay in the south until Kingdom come). But we’re planning to join forces ASAP and that’s awesome. I love my new kitchen and I don’t have people living above or below me, so I can stomp like a Minotaur and do it happily (I tried to find the link to the best of Craigslist, but no luck).

I still need to find a therapist, for maintenance.

I can’t quite believe I’m out.

I feel like I’ll wake up and still be trapped in my nightmare.

I am thankful for everything I learned, and everything I overcame to get to where I am now.

But I am fearful. I am worried I’ll get hurt.

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3 Comments

  1. Very good post. I will be going through many of these issues as well..

  2. BananaFurby says:

    Good to hear you’re “out”!!
    I can understand that you still feel like you’ll wake up and be back there or worry you’ll get hurt . These things take time, or at least they did for me.
    Rooting for you 🙂

  3. […] shy about money. You can see how much I’ve written about money or salary related things here, here, here and here.  Not having to worry about money the way I was back in 2011 is yet one of the many […]

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