Friday, September 6, 2013

Late nights and early mornings

Like a lot of parents, I dread bedtime. The child actually falling asleep is parental nirvana, but to get there you have to run a tangled labyrinth through hell. Last night was particularly bad. It does not help that the package containing his magic sleeping medicine is late and we ran two nights ago. So the past two nights he has been up til midnight until he finally crashes then I have 2 choices - stay up and be a productive housekeeper and/or grad student or go to sleep. Night #1 productivity won but was up til 2 which makes the 7am alarm really hard to achieve. Last night I had a bad headache so I crashed before he even fell asleep I think! Was halftime in the game, and that stinks cause I was really looking forward to NFL kickoff! I blame the game's weather delay ;)

In addition to missing P. Manning's explosion in the 2nd half of the game, I also fell behind in graduate student work (and didn't do the dishes or clean the living room!). I had an exam to grade for the course I teach and a protein assay to analyze which ended up being pushed to this afternoon in the lab. This means that I did not have time to do lab work that can only be done in the lab with my time there. Losing wet lab time is a crucial error on my part since unlike other graduate students I cannot stay later as i have to go get Boo before after school care closes! I have 2 lines of plants from my cold stress experiment that need to be ground and analyzed for protein assay, then another set that need to be ground and analyzed for genomic analysis! All of which I can only do while I'm in the lab. Unfortunately, grading had to be done and once I finished with that I did not have enough time to do a full round of leaf grinding before the required waste management meeting I had to attend this afternoon. So I spent lab time doing things I should have done at home last night. Thankfully, two days ago was a kicking day in lab so I have only fallen about an hour, maybe hour and half, behind in work.

This is the largest pitfall I have found with being a single Mom grad student, time management. Those hours I am capable of spending in the lab need to be spent doing things that can only be done in lab! Though some days, things happen and child + headache > data processing + grading!

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