Friday, May 31, 2013

Third Trimester: Happenings and Challenges

It's been a while since I updated this blog (in particular), or just about any of the other ones I keep for my kids and so on.  This entry is going to be more of a "catch up", as well as a preface to what is to come in the near future.

First and foremost, I'm now in my 3rd trimester of pregnancy!  The 27 week mark was yesterday, and I'm not sure my exact feelings on that.  Each pregnancy seems to go by more and more quickly, and there's part of me that just wants to hang on to it...babies are so much easier when they are inside of you, and there's a certain excitement that comes with just being pregnant.  This one is a baby girl, which we found out at the beginning of April, and as of a week and a half ago, she's still a girl (yeah, I know, ultrasounds are pretty accurate and all, and she didn't have a penis at 18 weeks, what made me think she'd have one at 25?).

The other news that came down yesterday packed a bit more of a devastating blow.  Without any warning (and I say this because, while there are clues leading up to this that make sense in context, there's no way any of us were actually expecting), our lab has been dissolved.  Disintegrated.  Poof.  I've never witnessed anything like it before, and I've fallen victim myself to lack of funding problems and the like.  The circumstances are not that we didn't have funding, either.  It was that the institute, apparently, decided that it needed to make up for some indirect costs by just getting rid of all of us.  One PI, one post-doc (me), three RA's and a biospecimen coordinator (two of the RA's also are graduate students, a masters and a Ph.D. student).  Two of us are pregnant.

For those who don't me, and maybe for those who do even, I thrive on having a plan in place for everything. I love it when a plan comes together (ala A-Team, right?), and when I don't have a plan or something seriously throws off my plans, it drives me crazy.  I think the lack of control actually might drive a depression as well.  So when the news came down that our last day is June 14th (that's the "official" day things start going down...each individual person has different circumstances that we don't all fully understand), it blew up my plans for upcoming maternity leave, blew up my plans for having health insurance in place that I was familiar with, blew up plans for writing and grant applications, and blew up plans I had for what I was going to do when my oldest starts kindergarten in August.

Anyway, there's a lot more to it than even I fully understand.  There's a lot of unknowns.  There's a lot of hurt feelings, sadness, and so on.  There's a lot of "what do we do now", a lot of panic.  And right now, I feel like I need to be in survival mode.  Until I hear otherwise, all I can do is to apply to jobs like crazy and hope that I can find something before baby girl arrives.

In the mean time, I might take the opportunity to document my job search here.  Honestly, this is not anything I thought I'd have to do while being a pregnant post-doc.

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