Friday, December 31, 2010

Happily Saying Goodbye

To 2010, not the blog sillies :)

This is an odd new years eve for me. Normally, I lament the passing year remembering the good times, surprised how quickly its gone and what I didn't get done.  Analyzing my regrets and working out resolutions for the new year. This year. I am happy to be done with 2010.  Despite some good times (The winter olympics, passing my comps), 2010 was one of the worst years I have experienced.  It started off by totaling our vehicle on our way up to our regular ski mountain holiday. And not from a rear-ender or crashing into a snow bank, but a full on roll over. My poor little monkey replayed that scene with his trucks over and over and over.  Thank God for the movie Cars, which introduced him to the concept of tow trucks and tow yards as that was the only way to calm him down.
After that hubby quit his well paying awesome benefits but completely non-mentally challenging job to work for the family business, which ended in disaster.  Him and one of his siblings had a huge blow out that may or may not be repairable. The only good thing that came out of it is that Mr.SM has stopped putting his career on hold in the hopes of making the business work as a career.  He found another job, but the months that he was only working for his family were extremely stressful and were right when I was studying for my comprehensives. Talk about recipe for bad things.

Well I"m sure you know what happened, my comps got delayed. I was unhappy and angry and Mr.SM was frustrated about his inability to find another job. Stressed out about finances etc. Not exactly a match made in heaven. In the middle of all this, our beloved grandpa got sick and passed on.  I shouldn't laugh but looking back, I think shit really. We were not emotionally equipped to handle that stress and it showed. Our communication was zero. We were both isolated in our pain at losing out grandfather, we didn't know how to cope my child kept asking questions. Then we lost another grandfather and there I was the week before my comps burying yet another grandparent. Yes it put the comps in perspective but that doesn't help with the heartache.  Nor did it help with the isolation that both of us were feeling, actually I was feeling.


Right before my comps we had a huge blow up / discussion about what was going on. Mr. SM was figuring that it was all normal considering what was going on and I was considering walking out. What a difference in view points.  The thing was, our issues weren't a lack of love but a lack of communication. Which we're continually working on.

The only good thing that has happened this year is that Mr.SM is home more, which is its own adjustment and well we're attempting to repeat our experiments. So here's to 2011 being much more joyful :)

Friday, December 24, 2010

Happy whatever it is you celebrate

We celebrate secular Christmas, so merry christmas!


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, December 17, 2010

Replications

A common theme within science is repeatability. Are you able to get that same result more than once? How do different variables effect your outcome? As most of you know, I work with the lovely Drosophila melanogaster. I have to admit that when I first starting working with them 2 years ago, I was a bit squeamish about them and thought my PI was the oddest person ever for talking about how beautiful / cute bugs were. Let me admit that I now say the same things over and over again.

Anyway my point is that in terms of replication I really only need to repeat an experiment 2 times. I used genetic crosses and stain about a shit load of progeny at a single time. In a single cross I"ll have the progeny of >15 different matings and stain about 15 experimental animals. I will then usually redo the cross with fresh parents another time or two to with make sure that the results are due to the genetic manipulation I've done and to get cleaner images (not pretty, cleaner ie less background, better tissues etc).  Other times I'll be trouble shooting and once I've worked out the conditions, I will do stuff 2 times to make sure the result is true. I''m the first to admit that if the result is unexpected, I'm apt to repeat multiple times, just to be sure.

The thing is, I work on short time lines. Its easy to troubleshoot as you know your results quickly and can adjust for errrors in the protocol? I always wonder about longer term or epidemiological type studies. I've been reading alot about vitamin intake levels and how long terms studies have had to be halted because of increased mortality risks. A well publicized trial by NIH into  estrogen replacement therapy was halted because the increased health risks were too great.  I wonder how did they determine their protocols? How does once troubleshoot when the effects won't be seen till years down the road?

I often joke that my monkey is my own little experiment. In a sense he is, because we're raising him very differently than the way either  myself or Mr.SM were raised. From his nutrition and activity levels, to the way he is disciplined and engaged with us and his surroundings. Whether this will result in more well-balanced and less crazy adult then either  of us are (or our parents) is unknown.  Have we made "grave" errors in our protocol that be won't known for a few years either? So how do make adjustments in our plan or do we just keep doing what we're doing with number 2? From the data, monkey seems like an easy going happy little boy (other than constantly escaping daycare...thats another post).  So I guess that means we're on the right track and have nothing to worry about.  Well at least thats what I'm going with . Number 2 will be our repeat experiment, though he/she does have the added variable of a mischievous older sibling. 

In case I was a bit unclear up top. Yep in 9 months I will be raising my own little experimentS. Which is why I've been silent on the whole blogging front lately. I've had 0 energy....

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Better late than Never - Hockey Pool Week9

It appears as Lavaland is holding on to her lead with no worries about any of us catching up. She's steady as she goes, no matter what Gerty-Z tries, she can't manage to catch up. Though she is managing to kick all of our buts on a semi - regular basis. Chall, Lavaland and myself all tied for second highest point catch last week.  Thomas is holding steady at the rear and Cath, Ricardipus and Bob are holding together in the middle, though with Cath desparately trying to get into the front lead with the rest of us. A sneak peak ahead suggests that GertyZ might finally overtake lavaland with Chall getting ahead of me...Damn You Two.  And damn those PV changes!

here's the data for all you nerds :)

Monday, December 6, 2010

Remembering Polytechnique

I don't have much to say, other than I'm choosing to ask you to take a moment and remember the 14 women that were gunned down in Montreal over 20 ago today.

I don't know what we can do to end violence against women anymore.  I used to feel like we were making headway, but the more I learn about todays video games and watch tv / movies, I feel like we're moving backwards. Committing violence seems to be a joke or a game. I'm trying to teach my child to do better and continue to ask for my politicans to put actually do something about gun control. Unfortunately, again that is something our current PM does not want to do

Today, I am asking you to take a moment to remember those women and the millions of others that die senselessly.  Please think of something you can do, to make a difference.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

I"m alive

barely. i am sick with the worst head cold ever. combine with fatigue from the crappy few months, nausea and marking makes me a very very unhappy individual.

which is why i've been shockingly silent on the whole science cheerleader thing, missed the hockey pool and am over all just a grumpy ass grad student..

thought you should know.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Hockey update TBA

I think I'm doing the update this week. But I'm never punctual with these things. Blame it on the marking hell I"m in currently.  It'll be done, just maybe tomorrow.....

Monday, November 15, 2010

What do I do?

I want to smack him hard, but hitting children these days is frowned upon. So how do you appropriately punish an almost 4 year old for putting coins into my laptops cd/DVD drive?

The very expensive MacBook pro I received as a mothers day gift? The computer he knows he is not allowed to touch?
Suggestions are appreciated.





- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, November 1, 2010

just living

Things are going well. I'm getting up, going to work coming home and spending time with hubby and monkey.  Hubby and I are trying to go to bed at the same time as I've realized we do alot of our chatting lying in bed together.  Its been nice as our communication is up and our bickering and argueing way down.  It also means my main blogging time is taken away from me.  Not sure what I'm going to do about that. Maybe pick a day or two to stay late.

The other thing is that I"m not sure what to blog about. I approached and missed my 2 year blogging anniversary. When I started it was all about trying to figure out what to do and how to make decisions with some feminist / diversity issues thrown in.  After I landed into my current lab, I haven't had alot of grad angsting to do and I switched into funny monkey stories.  He's still funny but seriously how many times can I tell you how cute and amazing he is? Or complain about him bringing his pillow and 30 stuffies to my bed at 4:30 am?

I guess I'm not sure what to blog about without being like OMG my life is the bestest. Because lets get real, it ain't. Marriage is work and its hard dirty work. Its worth it, as you the work leads to beautiful walks in the forest on an Autumn day. But I'm not really into blogging the minutiae of my life or my relationship with Mr.SM. It would be disrespectful to him. 

Which isn't to say I'm stopping blogging. I just may not be as frequent. Or I'll start going on geek on you and blog about *gasp* science!!! Eeeck :))

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Hockey Pool Update

Is visible below.  Gerty-Z had her best week to date and was able to propel herself out of last place (just barely).  Lavaland is steady as she goes. Looks like Bob is now getting Alyssa's title from last year as that Damn Bob.  He had the second highest points total and is keeping a small lead on Thomas.  Sorry Thomas, but getting the highest point total didn't help you :).  Chall and myself are doing way better than last year, bunching in the middle of the pack with Cath and Ricardipus, though Cath is doing her level best to put some distance between us.  Lets see how this week's race goes :)

Monday, October 25, 2010

Hockey update TBA

sorry, it was a late start to the day so the hockey update will be late. probably late PST. sorry :)

Saturday, October 23, 2010

A long awaited recap


Okay so this is a recap of my comprehensive exam.  Which means the first thing I have to admit is, she was right. Yep. My PI did a good thing by pulling the plug. In the extra time, I didn’t study anymore or learn anything new.  Well, that’s not true. She did give me one paper to read, that I hadn’t already read and which was helpful in connecting some dots.  Yes I did tell her she was right. She laughed and was just happy that I was happy.  She really does amaze me with how gracious and kind she is.   Back to why she was right. I was terrified of not doing well. As you all know, I suffer from imposter syndrome and if I had the exam in July, if the committee asked me something I didn’t know, it would’ve terrified me and made me panic. As it happens, when I was asked something that I didn’t remember I just said, had you asked me 1 hour ago I could’ve told you. Seriously I could have. I knew this because when my professor had asked me the week before I gave the “are you really asking me such a basic and simple Q” look. I could tell you where on my notes I had the information. I just could not recall it.
In hindsight, she pulled the plug not because she didn’t think I would pass. I would’ve passed at that point, but it would not have been the way I passed this time. I rocked it. It was a HUGE confidence booster as I was not panicking, I was confident about what I knew, was able to think about alternative approaches and argue with my committee.  I walked out, not thinking OMG thank god that was over, but walked out thinking, uhm really? That was like an extended committee meeting. I was joking and laughing with them. When they asked if I could get a hold of a hypermorph of my gene of interest, I told them the truth. Nope the bastards aren’t sharing.
Yes I swore and yes I argued with them, are you really that shocked.  I knew my shit and when they disagreed with my interpretation of the data or didn’t think my data was showing what I said it was. I told them how and why they were wrong. 
The comprehensives are not supposed to tare you down. They are supposed to boost you up.  Now don’t get me wrong. I was pushed for depth and breadth of knowledge, but I wasn’t devastated by not knowing. Mind you, I’m pretty OK with admitting I don’t know as that’s the only way I can be open to learning.
So what did I learn from this experience? The most helpful things for me were:
our weekly journal clubs. From my awesome labmates I learned how to critically analyze figures. Determine what is important information to give and what controls to ask for.  More importantly, we went over important papers in our field so when I got down to learning the nitty gritties, nothing was foreign to me.
Closer to the exam, I gave weekly lectures to my labmates instead of journal club.  I practiced utilizing a wipe board to convey important concepts.  The lectures were followed by a Q&A session, to once again practice conveying and synthesizing information.
Practice exams.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

How sexism leads to bad medical care.

Before I get into the whole fucked up medical care I experience, I wanted to give a short blurb on the personal  front, if you're not interested in that skip ahead to the third paragraph

Sometimes all one needs is a little perspective. Sometimes its a little rest. Sometimes its a bit of both.

I'm visiting the middle of Canada right now, yep Can-tario is where I am at. Kitchner/Waterloo specifically. I'm visiting a dear friend who is giving me ton of TLC. I'm sleeping in, lying on the couch, drinking beer and wine, generally being a single childless women.  Except I miss my boys, terribly. I ache for my child to come into my bed at 4 in the morning and steal my pillow. I miss Mr.SM's stupid jokes and funny smile.  At the same time, I needed this time.

We're stepping back from the brink. Which is nice. Its not just a step back, but a good walk away. We have work to do. Neither of us communicated well these last few weeks. We've both been so caught up in our own hurt, pain, stress that we have not been able to be there for each other.  Mr. SM lost his grandfather. His grandfather wasn't just any man, he was the father figure in Mr.SM's life. He was the one who took him to all his games, talked to him about the 'why'. Why what Mr.SM did was wrong, not just telling him the actions were wrong. I lost the only grandfather that lived in the same country and city as me. My child lost his great grandfather.

Nor was it an easy loss. We had to choose not to give treatment. Which is a painful no win choice to make. But it sucks doubly when information that is needed to make the decision is not given freely. We often talk about how sexism in any profession hurts other in the profession. Rarely do we talk about how it hurts the by standers. I am an educated intelligent woman. Any one who is capable of being rational, analysis of information would have been able to understand our grandfathers condition if they were given the information.  When doctors are conscending, elitist, sexists assholes they withhold information make decision for us and ultimately cause more pain to their patients and the patients family.

When I arrived in the hospital I tried getting information on my grandfathers condition. I was shown X rays because as the elderly prick doctor stated "I had a spark of intelligence about me". I refrained from saying FUCK YOU asshole because I needed to put my GF first.  All he told me was that my GF's bowels had burst and he needed surgery to survive. When I asked what type of surgery and the risk of surgery I was told that it was surgery or death.  The type of surgery was not explained and I stupidly did not ask. I should've. I assumed (which was a mistake) that the surgery would be stitching of the torn bowels.

Six hours later, the surgeon came down. PO'd as all hell and was angry that we were doing the surgery. When I asked what my options were, I was told to "close the book" on our grandfather. Let me tell you that is not how you talk to the advocate. The surgeon explained that my grandfather could die on the table (always a risk at his age) and would be on a ventilator.  I'm looking at him, thinking yes but he would be ALIVE??? He will heal and he will be fine. When I asked the internal medicine doctor, the one that thought I had the spark of intelligence, he said normally these types of surgeries have a 1% risk of death and with my grandfathers age and health it was about 20-30% more.  70% chance of LIFE? of course we would choose that.

Thankfully GF's general practioner came by and had my GF transferred to the main trauma centre. Once we got there, the amazing doctors actually explained what was happening. The surgery was not a stitch'em up and go surgery. It was major surgery, complete removal of the bowel and placement of a stoma so that my GF could poo into a bag that he would have empty out.  Yes the surgery they do as a treatment for colitis.  Shocking isn't it? Our grandfather was 81. How do you think he wouldve adjusted if he had the surgery and survived. Thats not an easy surgery for a 25 year old. I know, I've witnessed friends go through it, let alone some with my grandfathers heath problems.  He suffering from arrhythmia. His heart rated was fluctuating from 96 bpm to 117 bpm, he had COPD.  These are major warning signs against the use of anesthetist.  Oh and yeah at this point, >12 hours later we found out our grandfather had a 10% chance of survival and what did we want to do? The doctors at the trauma centre were amazing. Kind and  compassionate, taking time to explain treatment options, risks associated with each.  They were honest and open about what was happening and they left the decision making power in our hands. They did not make the decision for us.

Why didn't this conversation happen at the hospital in my grandfathers town, not one that was >1 hour drive away from ALL our family. He could've been kept comfortable in a hospital he knew, where family could easily be around him, where his grandchildren could've been with him when he died.  None of that happened because the asshole doctor didn't think I could handle, understand or need the information. Apparenlty his old white ass was better equipped to make decisions about whether we should / want to do surgery then my brown illiterate self.  We should've been given all the information at 10 am in the morning at the first hospital, had the pro and cons of each treatment option, the risks associated etc. We should not have been told the information

I think we made the right decision for our grandfather. It was a shitty spot to be in though, his mental facilities were intact and he knew he was dying. And Mr.SM and I didn't know how to be there for each other.  We're working on that. We've been hit with alot. Thankfully my comps went well and has been a turning point for us. Hopefully we can keep walking away from that brink.  Next post will be a summary of my exam.

Many thanks to all of my readers. Lurkers and commenters alike.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

For my non twitter / FB peeps

I passed. According to PI I kicked some freaking ass. I don't agree but I don't think my opinion matters.

Yeah yeah you knew I would, yada yada yada:))))

Love too y'all for all your support and hugs.



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Monday, September 20, 2010

In need of nominations

hey blog peeps.

My department would like to nominate a female scientist for an honorary degree. Need ideas fast!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Teetering on the brink

Mr.SM and I are teetering on the brink.

We've both been through alot this past summer. I haven't been blogging much, what with the cancellation of the first comp exam, the two dead grandfathers and now my 'second" exam coming up in two days.  There hasn't been alot of time for blogging.  That's just whats happened to me.
Mr.SM has been having his  own personal issues balancing the family business with work, quitting his job to work with the family fulltime only to realize he can't work with the family fulltime because of personality conflicts with family members.  We're both stressed. We both have no time to help or support the other.  Our communication has hit a all time low. 

I feel done with him.

Which is not an easy place to be. I love him, he's the father of my child but I wonder if I'm in love with him still.  To say these are not issues that I need to or want to be dealing with 2 days before my exam is an understatement. Unfortunately, stress brings out either the best or worst in us and right now all that I'm seeing is our weaknesses. His weaknesses.

Everyone keeps saying it will get better once the stress subsides, but we've had some major fights. some hurtful things were said and I'm not the best at letting things go.

All his negative points keep blaring in front of me. The more I complain, the more upset he gets because he's never good enough. Probably because his priorities aren't the same as mine. Probably because I'm telling exactly what I need from him and he's not doing it.

He's a workaholic and I hate that. I hate that our child thinks daddy's always to busy working. I hate our lack of family time.  I hate how his work is always more important or his need to relax or his something or the other.

I know we need to communicate. But I don't want to. I just don't want him around. I'm at a point where I don't see a benefit to having him around. He's nothing more than a companion that is giving me more stress than enjoyment.

Isn't that sad?

Friday, September 17, 2010

#womeninscience - Dr. Margaret Oakley Dayhoff

Anyone who is in the large (sub)field of biology / bioinformatics heck probably even chemistist who work on biological materials know the one letter codes for the 20 essential amino acids. How many of you know who came up with code and why?

Well it was Dr. Margaret Oakley Dayhoff, biochemist / biophysicist and one of the pioneers of what is now known as bio-informatics. I only learned of her this summer when I was figuring out a way to relearn all the one letter codes. I am sad that it took me so long to learn of her. Some one so accomplished really should be better known and the cynic in me thinks that if she was a white guy, she would be. She is the Grand Dame of Bioinformatics.

Some of the highlights from her website:

  • Among Dr. Dayhoff’s many contributions to science, the one she is most known for is the creation of computerized protein and DNA sequence databases, (Who doesn't use those?!) which were developed because of her research interests in bio-molecular evolution.
  • Her work produced statistical and computational methods for studying protein and nucleic acid structures that were critical to a large number of practical applications in the healing sciences, including the production of useful substances through genetic engineering

Well now you all know her too.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Fuck you Biology

***warning TMI

I feel like my vagina is being ripped apart. I currently am hating the fact that I am female.

the feeling that there is a vice between my legs, pulling apart my vaj jay is reminding me of the hell that was my birthing experience. it is making me rethink my desire to have a second child.

also I have decided that the guiding hand principle may be correct, because seriously how is this menstruation thing necessary for survival? Oh yeah and the guiding hand belongs to a male with a sick sense of humor or at least some one that hates women. Because no woman would've designed / evolved their own bodies to go through this or birth.

Pushing a >7 lb child out was not pleasant. As much as I want another child, this current pain is making me cross my legs, look at my husband and say don't even think out about sticking anything inside me.

that is all.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Bad Mom Moment

I lost my cool today. For the first time in >3.5 years, I screamed and yelled at my child. I used foul language. He was shaking he was so scared.

As I look back at it, hours later I can see all the places I went wrong and keep wondering what the fuck happened to me?

I know why I was mad. He locked the washroom stall door. I told him to open it and he refused. I could see him sitting on the toilet, pants off jacket still curling under his bum. I knew what was going to happen.
I asked him to unlock the door. He refused.
Then he couldn't get his jacket off. He knew poopoo was coming but wouldn't open the door. I refused to crawl underneath. What is that teaching him about listening and consequences? I believe that was the right thing to do.

The wrong thing was losing it when he threw his jacket out, with the inside smeared with poo. Seriously what was the big deal? We'd take it home and wash it. Looking back, I should've said, you made your jacket dirty because you didn't unlock the door like I asked. Now we're leaving the park to go home.

Instead, I got mad. I yelled at, told him to open the door. He said No I'm going poo poo. For some reason, I LOST it. I yelled at him to open the God Damn fucking door now. I had never screamed or sworn when I talked to him before.

Poor kid started crying because the poo fell into his underwear, because I was mad, because we had to go home. It was horrible. Apparently my sister heard him outside. I feel so bad. I don't know what happened to me. I rarely yell, let alone scream. I hate yelling and screaming.

We got home and I cleaned him up. I apologized for getting mad. I explained that I was really really frustrated because I knew the jacket was going to get stuck and was really upset that he didn't open the door when I asked. Still I scared the shit out of him and myself.

I know he'll be fine. I know he knows how much I love him and every one has there moments. However, I've been trying really hard to be the level headed, calm, rational mom I never had.

UGH. I might sleep in his big boy bed with him tonight. more for myself then him..

Because I don't already procrastinate enough

I have joined the twitterverse. I have no idea how to use this thing and probably won't play with it really till after C-day (D day is reserved for the defense day somewhere in the future). I guess I should put the twitter thingy on the right hand side, but that will have to wait...

Saturday, September 4, 2010

On a lighter note

Mr.SM and I needed a break from all the crazy that has been going on in our lives, which included a break from each other.

He's taken the boy off for a bit of outdoor fun and I've stayed home to "study". I've been quite successful if studying includes taking a 2 hour nap, making dinner, hanging out with friends and watching some Law and order while drinking wine.

Whateves, lets all agree that I needed and deserved a mental health break.

Now I'm watching, Underworld:Rise of the lycans. Like any good nerd/geek/scientist, I love my scifi and I especially love my vampire, werewolf movies/books/shows (Eric Northman you can take me anytime!). Since I've read and watched many vampire / werewolve type stuff, I'm pretty used to liberties being taken with the traditional myths. However, here's a thing you can't rewrite IMHO. Vampires are the undead. They live off blood, they do not have sperm or ovaries so they can't get pregnant. Just saying, Underworld, you fucked up with that little storyline.

Dropping like flies

The alternate title, when it rains it pours

Another Grandfather has passed.
WTF?!!!
I didn't even belief it when we got the call. I just put my head down and thought this must be some kind of sick joke. I've gone to the inlaws, are going through pics again, writing obituaries again. I look at my young cousins and think, you shouldn't have to deal with this. Two times in two fucking weeks.

To say I am numb is and understatement. Mr. SM and monkey have left for the day and may stay overnight with my brother. I am going to eat lunch, study, make some food to take over and then come home to a glass of 2007 shiraz.

The only silver lining is that I am no longer stressed about the comp exam. I will be burying another grandfather the week before my comps. It kinda puts things into perspective.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Full of anger

I am MAD and I am about to go on a ramble. Consider yourself warned.

This as probably been the shittiest summer that I can remember. I am angry, tired and frustrated. The ordeal with the comps started the anger and every thing else has just piled on top. It was bad enough being the interpreter and bearer of bad news with SMGrandPa, but on top of that I was dealing with trying to get information from sexist, condescending prick doctors. Then SM GrandPa died, in the most emotional roll coaster manner possible. Seriously, we had THREE false alarms before he passed. It sounds so cold and callous but having to prepare yourself for death 3 times in 3 days is mentally and emotionally exhausting. You get to point where you are thinking, OMG just die already and let us move on, which let me tell you is a horrible place to be. Because when grandpapa does die, peacefully thank God, you feel like shit. A whole fuck load of mixed up emotions run through you. Then you have to go through the whole planning a funeral while trying to explain to your child what is going on. Going to the SM house daily, dealing with everyone coming to pay they're respects. Having to deal with annoying SIL, not showing emotions because you need to be strong for SM Parents and Grandma. Not being able to breakdown at home because monkey will freak out be WTF why are you crying mommy? why are you sad? OR because Mr.SM is there and its his GF, so I need to be his rock. Tell WHO THE FUCK IS MY ROCK??!!!

I am angry because I didn't get a vacation, I didn't get to visit my BFF and her baby. And now i need to dive back into studying and TAing. Which means no fucking vacation till God knows when.

I am angry because you would think a death in the family would cement your belief in God as either existing or not, but no I am as conflicted as I was before hand, which I haven't really written about either, bc I have no fucking time to myself.

I need time to myself. I need everyone to fuck right off and leave me alone to pay my bills, clean my desk, watch some TruBlood and drink some OH.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Thank you.

I have always thought the best part of blogging, for me at least, was the comment threads. The conversations I have with my readers. The evolution of an idea through written comments.

Last week, I realized it was the support. The understanding. The empathy.

Grandfather SM passed away this past week. It sucked hard being the only with no hope. It sucked hard being the one to have to say, no really nothing can be done. No really he won't be going home. It sucked hard to realize that no matter how much I prepped myself, I wasn't really ready for him to die. No matter how much I knew it was/is better for him, I still want him here. For myself, my husband, my child, my family.

Since his death, life has been an non-stop go go go. Punjabi/Indian grieving customs are 1 part brilliant and 1 part crazy. Its been moments of sweet memories, interwined with crazy old ladies making me want to poke my eyes with a pencil, and its been less then 4 days.

I just wanted to thank everyone for their well wishes and expressions of sympathy. It really really has been a source of strength to check my email and see your support and encouragement. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Why I'm wishing I never went into science

My grandfather is dying. He will probably pass in today as they've stopped all meds, except the painkillers.
Although we knew he was getting weak and hadn't recovered fully from a bout of pneumonia last winter. We figured the warm summer months would keep him healthy over the summer, but that he would probably succumb to an infection during the cold and flu season of the winter months.

Then he collapsed. I spent all day at the local small hospital, advocating on his behalf (did I ever remember Zuska's many posts on trying deal with her moms many doctors). We were told that Grandpa SM had issue x that could be solved with surgery, but the surgery was risky. He would die without surgery and the surgery was 20x riskier. We were told he had a 20-30% chance of death, so of course we said do the surgery.
He was transferred to the major trauma center and we were told that he wouldn't survive surgery. I understood everything. All the medical jargon, I could listen in on their conversations and knew how dire the situation was.
And I have to communicate that to my husband and my in laws. How do you tell someone their father/grandfather is going to die and they must choose how he will die. With dignity and peace or trying every last measure to save him? How do you tell someone who hours before you assured that their father/grandfather would be ok with time is not going to be?
I am the only person who did biology. Out of my inlaws, only mr. Sm and I have gone to university. When I tell them that organ x has perforated, they don't understand what that means in terms of the poison running into Grandpa's body. They look at mr with hope on their eyes saying, but SM it will heal right? Right.
I know what is happening to my grandfather. I knew there was no hope. And I have to tell that.

Friday, August 6, 2010

White people should not write about brown people dating

Because try as they may, they get it wrong.

The print edition of todays Globe and mail has an article on South Asian online dating, which is so full of fail its ridiculous. Promoting stereotypes that parents arrange our marriages to picking who we date. I can not find the freaking article online and am too sick (I have the worst summer cold) to type everything out.

It is safe to say: we don't have arranged marriages. Yes we value family, yes we're modest, I'm not making out with my husband in front of my parents.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Scientist Dads Stepping Up - a New ScienceCareers?

Okay so there is a work-life balance carnival going on, or was going on yesterday over at LabSpaces. I found out about it thanks to DrugMonkey. I did thank DM for pointing it out, since you know I did cause that huge kerfuffle awhile ago....

Neways, I really did want to post about managing work-life balance and how I manage to be a grad student, mom, wife and person. Unfortunately I have no time. Because blogging is something I do as a "person" and there is very little me time right now. I listed those roles in their priority sequence. Mr.SM and me time are equal, neither is getting any...At work/school, I need to be a student and focused on studying, though that is a bit challenging after the whole comp debacle. At home, monkey needs me to be focused on him, the I have all the house chores to get done and so does Mr.SM.

Anyways, the point of me blogging mid-day is that Vijaysree Venkatraman shot me an email about her latest article in ScienceCareers. I have to say Five stars. She made sure to have pics of the male scientist being dads, talking about both the joys and challenges of being involved AND the Stigma. I am happy to see that the blogosphere was listened to. Here's to hoping this article is one of many and not just a one off.

Thanks to Vijee for sending it to me and giving me the heads up.

Monday, August 2, 2010

HouseCleaning

By now, most of you probably know that a good chunk of former and current SB bloggers along with others from our humble little science community have gotten together in a new Science blogging Collective, Scientopia. With all these new announcements, I think its time for some housecleaning. Now, don't anyone get all hot and excited thinking, lowly little SM is moving out. I have not been honored with an invite (hint hint in case anyone is reading!:))). Honestly though, I am pretty sure my infrequent posts, bad grammar / spelling and focus on all things monkey are probably not appropriate for a science based blog collective, but gal can wish can't she??

Neways, with all the moving around I figure I should update the links on the side bar along with google reader. So if you'd like a shout out, please let me know!

Monday, July 26, 2010

I Love him

I do. But he moves as slow as molasses (just like his dad) which drives me nuts. It tests my patience constantly. Especially when I have stuff to get done. Combine that with the persistent asking of why and then mommy mommy uhm. Well on a good day, it's enough to make me grind my teeth and be exasperated. On days like today, when I'm tired and generally frustrated with the school and family shit that is going on, it's enough to put me in an asylum.

Monday, July 19, 2010

The dealio

First of all I want to sincerely say thank you to everyone for the kinds words, thoughts and offers of private venting. It is so great to know that I have such an awesome cheering section.

I know you're probably wondering what happened to piss me off so much and some of you may know because (1) you're a facebook friend (2) you know me in meatspace. I am going to reveal what happened because (a) almost everyone at school knows (2) for any grad students that may be reading.

I was angry because my PI pulled the plug on my comps. She gave me the choice, but didn't believe I would pass and didn't want me to go through that experience. I'm no idiot, so when my PI strongly advices something I tend to listen. But I was pissed. I've been busting my ass trying to get the mock grant ready, studying my ass off and not spending time with my kid. I've been putting off personal life stuff until my comps were over and its just going to be delayed more.
I am angry because I am embarrassed that I couldn't get it done. Others have gotten ready for their comps in 6 weeks and I couldn't do it. I see this as a failure. I don't deal well with failure very well.
I am angry because I was not aware of all the different subjects I had to study. I know my shit. I know the shit that my committee told me to study. I don't know the "other shit" my PI expected me to know. She never told me that I needed to know that shit. I know she never told me because I take notes at every meeting. "Other shit" was not written down.
I am angry because there was a communication breakdown and ultimately its my fault.
I am angry because every week I was reviewing with a postdoc and a research associate, and they thought I had a solid understanding but they didn't know I needed to know this "other shit".
I am angry because its not their responsibility to know what I need to know - I know its my fucking responsibility.
I am angry because if I don't know I'm going down the wrong path, how am I supposed to ask for help.
I met with my PI we made a plan and worked my ass off. Except she didn't mention "other shit" I need to know. So when she realized days before (because she never attended the review sessions until I asked) that I was missing stuff, she pulled the plug.
I am angry because I thought I was being responsible. I talked to her, met with committee members for detailed breakdowns and pushed hard. Except when the time came to show I was ready, I wasn't because I didn't know "other shit" that I wasn't told. I should tell you that I know some shit because I realized that although no one mentioned it, it would be good to know. But not being told I need to know "other shit" is not an excuse because (according to PI's I have spoken to) it was my responsibility to know that I needed to know the other shit. Which makes me feel likes it a circular arguement, in that is my responsibility to ask or I'm supposed to just know, but if I don't know, how do I know I don't know? How do I know I"m supposed to ask?

I don't hate my PI. I really like her and I know she looks out for me. I also know that most PI's believe graduate students need to be responsible for their own shit. I try to be a responsible independent, mature grad student. But sometimes its just too fucking much. This whole attitude of its the graduates student responsibility to be in charge of their own degree pisses me off. Why are you there as a PI if everything is my responsibility. When I ask my PI friends what the fuck their responsibility is, they have no answer. When I ask for an explanation of what I did wrong, they say their is no point in placing blame. Which makes me angry. I am angry because I think my PI thought she didn't need to hold my hand and I proved her wrong.

In case you haven't figured out. I just basically angry at the whole fucked up situation. Yes I'm trying to look on the positives. Yes I know its for the best. Doesn't make me any less angry.

Yes I have met with her again to outline what I need to know, wrote everything out and gave it back to her to review. I know 90% of what is on there, which makes me even more angry.

I am angry everytime I sit down to study. I don't think I will get over my anger.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Moving foward

How do you get over being angry and dis-appointed? Something has happened, the details of which I'm not sure I want to blog. Its save to say that I am really really angry and frustrated at the situation and as much as I'm trying not to do the blame game and the comparison game, its going on in my head.

I"m frustrated because I no longer know who's reading and I don't want to say anything that will bite me in the ass. Which is doubling frustrating because this was my venue to get advice and comfort. This blog was what go me through having to decide whether to quit science, find a new supervisor etc.

who / what do I turn to if I can't turn to my blog?
how do I just get it over the feelings and focus on what needs to be done?

Saturday, July 10, 2010

I miss my monkey

I've spent all day in the library studying and will be doing that all this weekend, next week and next weekend.

its the first day and I miss my kid already. Can't wait to go home and have him give me a big hug...Sadly it will only be for a bit before I have to study again....

Monday, July 5, 2010

I hate PhysioProf

I know I shouldn't say that, its probably going to make a bunch of trolls come out and get annoyed with me. But I can't help it. Right now, I hate the esteemed CPP. Why do I hate him? Because he's in my fucking head and I want him to get out. Get the fuck OUT of my head!!
I want to be mad. I want to bitch and whine and complain about the fact that I am going on Version 1020 of this stupid fucking grant (at least it feels like I've revised it 10 million freaking times). I do not want to be writing, I am sick of it and I want to focus on studying and learning. But every time I think that, what do I hear in my head? Fucking CPP and his stupid annoying post about the writing process. Don't ask me how I hear him, since I've never heard him freaking talk, but I tell you I hear him. Every single time I get annoyed, I hear:

"you frequently learn some important shit while off on those detours. Consequently, it is fucking absurd to look back and in hindsight consider any non-linear path to the destination to have been a “waste of time"

Do you see my dilemma? He's fucking right. So every time I want to bitch and complain that I don't have time for this writing shit, I need to be learning. I can't. I hear CPP telling me that I am learning through this writing process. Which pisses me off. My head and this blog are the two places in which I can bitch and moan. Its hard to bitch and moan when someone is telling you that you have nothing to complain.

No I can't not bitch about my PI either. She is absolutely brilliant at making the harshest criticisms come out fair and right. Plus all her suggestions are good and will close up in holes that my committee would poke. I know all this. I know its good for me, I know everyone is helping me to succeed. But you know what? I am tired and I want to whine and moan. But CPP isn't letting me.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Whatch looking willis?

The who are and why are you here meme as started again. I think the readership has maybe changed over the last year, so go ahead, introduce yourself!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Joel Stein the idiot.

So I'm not going to do much other than point you to Samia, to get the links the totally not-funny Joel Stein article in Times.

I haven't linked to the article because there is no where that I could find to leave comments. Quite frankly I don't want to send readers there, if they can't express there disgust at him lamenting about the loss of his white suburb to us dotheads, yes he did use that God awful phrase.

For those of you who thought I got all defensive with GMP's cultural diversity post (which never should have been called a post on cultural diveristy) for no reason, really should think about how you're funny comments affect those of us who have dealt with this shit all our lives.

FUCK YOU joel stein.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Save me from Divorce!

Monkey comes with me to campus everyday 5 days a week. Which means we spend alot of time together in the car, listening to either the radio or my musical tastes, which I have no problem are decidedly pop. Trust me when I say, I like music, but know very little about it. As in a long time ago, I was all whatev about R.E.M and saying I don't even like their stuff, when Mr.SM pointed out I was singing along to their music. I looked at him (I'm not lying) and said thats R.E.M?

Mr.SM still gets frustrated with me for not knowing about certain Allstars Jazz to blues to Rap (which seriously I don't understand, we've been together for over ten years, has he not realized I know nothing about music or sports??? why be freaking surprised). You name the genre he knows about it. He LOVES musics, as he tells me on a regular basis, death metal got him through his teenage years. Just to make the dichotomy of our tastes clear, Mr.SM grew up in the middle of no where listening to Ozzy Osbourne and Metallica. I grew up in the middle of suburbia listening to Wham/George Micheal and Madonna. Last year when I could only afford to go to one concert, it killed me to have to choose between them. When I asked my husband if he wanted to go to George Micheal he responded that I couldn't drag him there with wild horses.

Which is not say that he doesn't appreciate pop. He was amused that monkey can sing along to Black Eyed Peas and Lady Gaga. That he will sing usher on his own (really how hard is usher).
However if he finds out that monkey was singing along to this:


I am pretty confident he will divorce me. So I need y'all to suggest child friendly music to listen to on our commute. I need music that will not make me want to kill myself, but also not filled with profanity, degrading to women etc. I pretty much like anything except metal. Suggestions would be appreciated.

I would just like to clarify that I do not want any child-targeted music. I will lose my mind (especially right now) if I have to listen to a modern day version of the mini-pops. Nor do I want monkey's musical education to be as poor as mine. I envy individuals who grew up in families that could appreciate music. I intend to put the little guy into guitar lessons etc. I just have an issue with him singing about brushing his teeth with a bottle of Jack or how he wants to smack that ass...

I know hard!

So far I'm thinking, K'naan, bob dylan, sloan, dixie chicks, feist.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Help from the cell culture folk

I need a little help from you dear readers. I need to know the purpose behind culturing cells in a serum free medium. I'm thinking its to control for things like growth factors that are present in serum, but i'm not sure. I have so many other things to find, learn and figure out that I'm hoping you can save me on this one.

pretty please with sugar on top? I'll even tell you how I made Src my bitch.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

As usual Zuska does it again

I have no problem admitting that other people (especially other feminists) are way more articulate at expressing my thoughts/ feeling/ point of view then I am. For a variety of reasons, I find it hard to get all my thoughts / feelings/ opinions formed into coherent posts.

Well Zuska has written an awesome post on work life balance, all the different scenerios it encompasses and has challenged the male scibloggers to take a turn:)

Monday, June 21, 2010

Dear Src Kinase

I hate you.

I hate how everyone can say everything about all the million freaking things you and your sibling do. How your structure can be simplified down to being between 52-64 Kda, with 4 main domains SH4, Unique, SH2, and SH3, but no one explains what happened to SH1? Did s/he run away? Get cut away in some post-translational modification?And What the fuck do you do? I don't care what you whole extended freaking family does, I only care about you specifically and how do you do it. You ancestor resides in my invertebrate animal model, the ancestors of all your cousins do not - I do not care about them. I am new to learning about you and your culture of kinase activity. I need an introduction to Src for dummies, not an intensive look at me and my family and all the freaking shit we do.

I know you're inactivated by phosphorylation of your c-terminal regulatory tyrosine (Y527) but I also know that phosphorylation of your Y416 in the activation loop is more important. As in your Y537 can be phosphorylated and but you will still be fully active if Y416 becomes pY416. How the fuck is that possible if SH3/SH3 intramolecular interactions are supposed to have you snapped shut and locked?

the only good thing is that your adaptor proteins are relatively easy to understand.

get your shit together please,

that is all

Kind Regards,
ScientistMother

Condolences Massimo

I hope you weren't too devastated by yesterdays loss. I'm not going to say anything other than I feel your pain.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Step up to the plate DrugMonkey

You asked why you were brought into the conversation? Because you've said you are an ally. You have stated on your blog that you believe that gender equality in science is a good thing. Yet you rarely talk about some of the balancing issues or the parental issues. I have the link up that shows you think its important. Yet outside of that post originally done 2 years ago, you don't talk about fatherhood or balancing fatherhood and partnerhood with science.

Mr. SM stresses about child care, he stresses about balancing all his responsibilities, he stresses about making his career successful without costing him his wife/family. I am friends with male PI's who've just had kids that struggle with this. I have male grad student friends that struggle with this, but they don't always feel comfortable talking about it. The only male bloggers (that I know of) who have mentioned this stuff is PLS and PalMD. I don't think PLS does too much writing about balancing, but he does on occasion discuss the joys of daycare, sick child and travelling too much. PalMD has many posts about taking his daughter on rounds so they can spend time together and the women in his life. They make it OK to be dads, scientists and partners. This is important for everyone.

We live in a patriarchal society and until we change some of the "normative" ideals we will not achieve gender equity. You once wrote a post on shifting the window in regards to politics of extreme rightwingnutism. I can't find the link, but essentially it was how the extreme right is so extreme that it shifts what is palatable or acceptable to the right. If you blogged regularly about balancing your non-academic responsibilities or your kids( aka Dr.Freeride, Dr.Isis, DrdrA), you're reframing the problem not as a women in science issue but as a person in science.

Jim Austin is partly correct when he's says that alot of women have the majority of household responsibilities, but its not always true and I'm not sure its the majority of the time either. If I was to list out the household chores, I would be forced to admit that Mr.SM does more of them, they're just not critical to day to day life. I like to bug Mr.SM that he'd fall apart if I left because I cook and do the grocery shopping. We share the kid stuff and the dogs stuff. If he left I may have food, but I'd have no clean dishes, no clean laundry, a dirty house and a overgrown yard. This arrangement works for us, as it does for most working couples. Yet what he does it not seen a the normal thing an equal partner does. I'm supposed to be grateful that he pulls his own weight. I"m supposed to be happy, I'm so lucky. WTF? Partly this is because of the traditional culture I'm part of, but its also how science and society kinda works.

I left my original PhDlab for a variety of reasons, but one of the main reason was the inherent belief that kids were someone that your partner dealt with. When my PI was struggling to balance the needs of his scientist wife and his job, he was seen as being "whipped" and she was unreasonably selfish. When he had to write a grant with his kid on his lap, "where the fuck was his wife" was openly said.

You need to write about balancing your life with your science as you said yourself the The father/PI who is seriously concerned about gender equity in science will go out of his way to exhibit his status.

If the d00ds hear from d00ds, they're more likely to think about it. You're not going to change my inlaws or my parents, but you can shift the way the issue is viewed.

Monday, June 7, 2010

A reminder of why I blog

I haven't been blogging about science in the last few months. Its partly been because I know a few of the individuals around me know I blog and its partly because I don't really know what to blog about in terms of science. I mean do you really want to hear about how much I love my supervisor as lab mates?

But a reader recently sent me a personal email, which has reminded me that I've never really blogged about science, but more about science policy and the importance of improving the environment for increased diversity.
ust wanted to say thanks for your blog, and for blogging about diversity (and the lack thereof) in the science blogosphere.

I am not a science blogger, but I am a postdoc in engineering, and I read a lot of the science blogs regularly. I am Indian (sorry, I am not Punjabi, I'm Bengali -- and there aren't that many Bengali women in science either :-) ). I too was beginning to feel for a long time the "whiteness" and "otherness" of the science blogs, and your posts just hit the spot. So thank you!

This reader has reminded me that I need to start advocating for those changes. I just won't be starting until after my comps:) 6 weeks to go!

Be forewarned, I may start blogging about RIS complexes and tyrosine kinase pathways!

Yeah poop!

We did very slow switch over of SMDogs food from very expensive, no perservative, no filler food to Kirkland Premium brand (yes that would be costco brand dog food) and there is no more diarrhea! Over the last week she's had more kirkland brand than the other stuff and her weight gain has been noticeable. We're very excited and find it a bit ironic that it was the "good" stuff that wasn't very good for her. We figured it was the food because if we had a high quantity of white rice mixed in with her dry food she was fine. I'm so happy that her tummy is all well.

Her confidence is getting up there as well. She's starting to challenge my authority which is good in terms of confidence, but bad in terms of training. I hate being harsh with dogs, but I need to be....

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Diversity - its a fine balance

So most of you may have heard about the shit storm the newest member of the science blogging community has gotten into. Isis, I think rightly, took offense to some of the stuff that GMP wrote on diversity. I will say that personal hygiene comments DO NOT belong in a post about cultural diversity, full stop. I live in a city where probably 80% of the worlds countries are represented and I have not seen a case where lack of cleanliness was part of the culture. A lack of cleanliness is a personnel issue not a cultural diversity issue. I know Whitey McWhitersons who have come into the lab dirty and smelly and I've been around people of my own community where I've been fuck buddy you stink! Sorry GMP that was a huge mistake to lump that into a post about cultural diversity.

Lets talk about the fine balance of cultural diversity

I read the original post, but did not bother commenting because as I read her response to comments it appeared to me, that she wasn't actually listening to why it pissed people off. I read upto AA's second comment and up until then GMP's attitude was its my lab, its how I choose to run it, I'm ESL and its how I had to be and oh God the Arizona example...just bad.

Lets agree on somethings. Having a strong foreign accent isn't necessarily a black mark. I know many people who are quite successful despite being difficult to understand because of their strong Irish, British, Australian accents. In general, <- not true across the board, certain accents are perfectly fine and non-threatening. Its the Mexican, Latin American, Indian, Asian accents that tend to piss people off. Because you know, we're don't really belong here.

Let also agree that not all people have the same opinion or experience, but can we say that we don't want to become the Borg and assimilate? Assimilation does not lead to diversity and when you preach conformation, you're preaching assimilation.

We can all agree that command of the English language is important to succeed in North America. Many large cities have china towns, little india's etc. These communities are great because new immigrants have an established community they can join. But its a double edged sword. It also discourages integration. My parents frequently complain about the recent Punjabi immigrants who haven't learned English and don't expand their circle of interaction past the large Punjabi expat community. It leads to barriers for woman and children who need to access services or rights that they didn't have in their countries of origin. The idealistic image of integration was my son's first birthday party, which was a traditional huge Indian affair. All our friends and family (of various shapes and colours) were in a hall, with tons of food and drink, dressed in our colorful outfits, dancing to bhangra. On all the big screens the hockey game was on and we were all watching. The CBC has hockey games with Punjabi play by play. That is awesome.

The negative is that many "traditional" attitudes exist and are hard to break down because some immigrants are not embracing the best of what Canada offers. I have been heard complaining of relatives who have lived here for >5 years yet don't speak English. They have no incentive because they can work for an Punjabi run company, bank where there are Punjabi speaking employees. But what happens if they have to access the legal or health system? They argue against giving rights to women/ gays / lesbians, using the same argruements that were used against giving my parents rights. Again this is not a blanket statement because everyones' experiences are DIFFERENT

I can understand GMP's desire to encourage strong command of the English language, but she muddied the waters when she brought in the food and cleanness issues. In one of my comments to Isis's post, I commented how I am still hesitant to eat my Indian food in the lab because of all the negative commentary as I was growing up. True Diversity is celebrating both our similarities and differences, working toward blending to make a better environment for everyone.

I'm not sure I personally agree with an English only policy, mentoring is a challenge. You can know what you went through and say that your students have to do that OR you can recognize that what you went through is bullshit and work to ensure your students don't have to go through it to.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Overwhelmed

Last week I had my pre-meeting. We discussed the main themes for my comprehensives. Can anyone say freaking wide open spaces????? The general topics are huge, things that I haven't looked at since undergrad. Seriously so much as changed that I've been told my old Alberts Molecular Biology of the cell is outdated. Not outdated as in all textbooks are outdated, but outdated as in no longer a good starting point for a new topic as in the overviews and general concepts are no longer true. fuck me. must go bury my head into EGFR signaling, Src Kinase / tyrosine kinase papers. URGH.

I fucking hate microsoft

it should not take me >45 minutes to figure out how to download and install your fucking updates. Your stupid ass program should not be crashing everytime I open files created on your fucking program

Thursday, May 27, 2010

And the countdown begins

Meeting with committee to set examination topics and date. Freaking out. Bring on the extra-large Doritos please.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Another open letter

Dear car,

You suck. The unexpected >$500 repair is not appreciated. You damn well better keep that engine light off long enough to pass the air quality test.


Wednesday, May 19, 2010

An Open Letter to Steve Jobs

Dear Steve,

5 years ago I become a mac user. I admit, I did it partly on a whim, partly due my utter and complete annoyance with my Dell and partly to be different. You see, when I converted it was before all the cool guy vs pc guys commercials, before you tube became a sensation, even before you converted to the intel processors. I fell in love with my little ibook G4 immediately and 5 years later, it really hasn't let me down. Yes its slow and yes its not the best for CPU intensive scientific work, but for serving the net, checking emails, you know pretty much anything outside of scientific working its great. Apple is known for its amazing long lasting computers and accessories. Yes that includes things like the ipod and the iphone. So why the hell don't you have backward compatibility? I recognize some things are limited because of CPU type, but really if a program works on my G4, shouldn't it work on my icore7?? Why does illustrator work fine but not Photoshop? I don't understand. Why can OS 10.5.8 recognize my G4 and migrate everything perfectly fine, but 10.6 can not? What is up with that??? If you're going make long lasting computers than you need to realize that people are going to be trying to switch over computers that are 5 years or more apart in age.
And seriously, the iphone 3G is not that old, the remote on the remote headphones should freaking work as well. It works on the new computer but not on the 3G iphone? WTF Steve Jobs WTF

Oh and your fight with Adobe is fucking stupid. I know you're not adding flash so that I have too download a TV show from itunes instead of going to the networks website. How dumb do you think your customers up. You need to shape up, you're starting to look and sound like Bill Gates.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Mirror Mirror on the Wall

Who the heck is the lady in front of you???

I used to be cool. Seriously I was. I knew the best restaurants in town, what the trendiest fashion was and what was hip and happening in the world. I used LOVE that stuff. And I still do, except somewhere along the line, I just don't care as much and I don't know how it happened or when it happened. All I know is that Mr.SM offered to buy me a fancy pants gift for Mother's Day, whatever I wanted. He offered fancy jewellery, new clothes, new shoes whatever my heart desired because I deserved it. I chose a new Macbook Pro over a diamond anniversary band!!!! WTF happened to me!?

All I know is that I have been eagerly anticipating the computers arrival and have been playing on it all day. Somewhere in my >10 year marriage I have become the computer expert, knowing how to network computers, troubleshoot etc. I can talk RAM, core7 processors, SATA harddrive and dedicated graphics cards with the best of them. I can have discussion of the pros and cons of investing in a faster processor vs more RAM or vice versa. I psht and say of course I'm upgrading to the faster hard drive, duh!

What happened to the girl who loved nothing more than to sit at a restaurant with her creme brulee and martini's?

Saturday, May 15, 2010

The "joys" of dog ownership

I've had a dog in my life since I was 13. The last three years have been the first time in >20 years that I didn't have a dog and both Mr.SM and I would constantly dream about the day when the yard, fence, child were all ready for adoption. I have to say that nostalgia really is viewed through rose colored glasses. The things I forgot about dogs or didn't experience.

  • The monkey is in love, getting him to do anything is impossible because he must see SMDog. And OMG he does not want to leave in the mornings. Morning are my hell..
  • Dogs are like children, so even if your child is willing to finally sleep in on a weekend, the dog will be crying and whining to be fed and taken out.
  • And my personal favorite Skunks. Woke up this morning, opened the door to feed and take out SMDog and got a wonderful whiff of skunk...

oh the joys, the joys....

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Geronimo!!!

I've jumped off the cliff - literally in my mind. The emails requesting availability for my comprehensives have been set. It looks like it'll be in July sometime. Shitting bricks as I type this. In utter and complete panick mode!!!!!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Bittersweet Additions

As you know, we recently added a brand spanking new dog to our family. We purchased a female purebred German Shepherd from a "reputable" breeder, who was > a year old. As much as I would love to rescue a dog from the pound, my last experience with doing that was less than pleasant. When I did that, I adopted a dog under the presumption that he was ~3 years old, healthy and ready to be a running partner. I had the pound send me the vet records, which stated he had been checked and xrayed for hip issues. A week after we adopted him, we took him to our vet and found out he was double digits in age, had cataracts and major hip problems. Mr.SM's attitude is that when you adopt children, you don't return them if they have issues and same goes for pets. We made the best of the situation, gave the dog lots of love and he loved >5 years. Four more than the vet thought he would.

Since we weren't going to go the pound route for the above reason plus the facts its hard to find dogs from the pound that are good with kids, we went the breeder route. I wanted to make sure we found a breeder that wasn't a puppy mill, someone that treated their animals well, was breeding only 1 time a year etc. I went to the CKC to find a list of registered breeders t called around a few of them, looking for a non-puppy and was recommended to the breeder I picked by another breeder. I figured when a community member recommends another community member, its a good sign. This particular breeder was also a member of the executive for the provincial GSD club, what I thought was another good sign.

Unfortunately there are some issues. It should've been a red flag when s/he stated that the available dog was not registered. S/he was completely honest that when the litter was born, s/he did not have the time to deal with the animals appropriately and did what should never be done. S/he kept the sibling together all the time and did not socialize the dogs which is why s/he didn't register them. As result of the lack of socialization, our dog is fearful of new surroundings and is somewhat aloof, but also very gentle. Again, the fact the this individual was very honest about the lack of socialization, admitted to being a bad dog owner in term of keeping the sibling together I though was a good sign. When I first saw SMDog, I thought she was underweight, but the breeder said it was because she was just finishing her growth stage and would fill out now. Everything seem OK and after thinking about it >1 month (looking for at other dogs) we decided that yes this was the dog for us. However, now that we have our little gal, I have feeling I was not told everything. SMdog is underweight, is experiencing diarrhea, eating her own poop and has a significant lack of confidence. I've request vet records and haven't heard anything. I called this morning to find out more about the GI issues but haven't got a call back.

I'm OK with the fact that SMDog isn't "perfect". If it ends up that there are health issues that s/he knew about, I'm not going to return the dog. Monkeyboy is in love with her and I don't have the heart to take his BFF away. I do want to know what is known and what isn't known. There is no reason to duplicate tests or go on a big problem solving adventure if s/he has the answers. I also know that if I had gotten a puppy instead of older dog there would've been issues / problems as well. Even at the puppy stage you can't guarentee that the dog won't end up having GI issues and you have no idea what the personality will turn out to be. SMDog is already improving in spades through twice daily walks, obedience training etc. I have strongly believe that she will have a the confidence and courage of the typical GSD after a year of hard work. What I'm not sure about is the health. We've upped her food from the recommend 2.5 cups / day to 4 cups a day. We're supplementing with brown rice and sweet potatoe to control the diarrhea and are using Forbid to try to nip the poop eating. We're currently using Healthwise Lamb and oatmeal. I have never used fancy smancy food like this before. I'm IAMS / EUKANEBA type of Gal. Any recommendations on food? No the breeder did not give me food to when we picked up the dog, but s/he did apologize for that.

I'm more upset with myself for not asking more questions, requesting the vet records before I took the dog, for possibly supporting an unethical breeder - something I was trying really hard to avoid.....

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

I love glee

That is all. I had another post but the iPhone ate it. But seriously, glee is targetted to my age group.


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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

An open letter to Oncogene

You suck.

Seriously, its 2010 and the oldest PDF's on your website are from 1997! WTF Oncogene. Do you think that science prior to 1997 is not important? Do you think that we newbie scientists don't want to read them? I mean seriously, Annual Reviews has older PDF's as does the American Physiology Society and you, part of Nature Group can't get you shit together?
You wasted 1 hour of my time as I had to hunt down a freaking library copy card - most people don't even know what those are. Then I had to walk across campus to the library! You're lucky it was a beautiful sunny day otherwise I would've been really pissed. Yes I know, too you whats 1 hour to walk out and get a paper. Well for me its 1 less hour to spend reading and thinking about science. And since I'm currently banned from actually doing science till this freaking grant is done, it 1 more until I can actually do science. I don't have all day to do this shit people. I have from 9-5. Thats what happens when you have child(ren)!

Seriously, get your shit together.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

An open letter to my asshat neighbour

Can I start by saying Fuck off?

I understand that waking up at 8:00 am on a tuesday morning is a bit much. Not all of us work 9-5 so I get that you don't necessarily want to hear a dog howl mournfully for 2 hours before going to work. But I've been living on my little corner lot for > 5 years and have never ever caused any problems. No noise, no loud parties, no massive domestic fights. So leaving an anonymous, bitchy note about the fact that the dog was howling and the need for me to find less disruptive solutions was a bit dickish. Firstly because its making me announce to my readers that we have new dog, in a less then happy look at my dog way, secondly because I haven't ever caused any problems before. Do you think that I didn't give a shit? How about knocking on the door and asking me if I need any help? Maybe you could ask if something is wrong with the dog? Something along the line of we never noticed before that you had dog, did you rescue hir? Is she anxious from being abused? Or how about leaving you fucking name so that I can come and apologize and let you know that we just got her and we're trying everything to ease her anxiety, from leaving the talk radio on, crating her, not crating her. Walking her >1 hour in the morning before we leave for work. Spending every waking minute with her for the first 3 days, even in the freezing fucking rain. Why? because we didn't want her freaking out and waking the neighbours. Mr.SM sat with her all fucking night the other day so she wouldn't cry and disturb the neighbours. Want to know what the next door neighbour said? Don't worry about it, we're so happy that your little guy has a friend. We don't mind, it happens while dogs adjust. Because we've been here >5 years and never cause problems dickwad. So if you want me to take your compliant seriously, have the fucking balls to tell me who you are so we can actually have a conversation that might lead to some solutions. Oh and you're not living in the freaking burbs asshole. This neighbourhood has alot more noise than a freaking dog.

Yours truly,
SM

*** I have never ever complained about dogs being noisy. Thats just fucking stupid in my books. Dogs bark and howl. Whatever. The amount of noise a dog makes is nothing compared to the freaking ambulances, trucks, and other freaking noise out there. You're living in the subarbs

and the dog is amazing. monkey is in love. will post about it when i'm not pissed at the fucking neighbour

Saturday, April 24, 2010

First dates

I feel like I'm going on a first date. I'm having dinner with a friend for the first time in > 5 years. We lost touch after she married a complete ass. Yet I've always thought about her and missed her. We've gotten back in touch recently and are having dinner tonight. I'm currently waiting for her to arrive. I hope this friendship can be re-kindled.

But OMG am I ever nervous!


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Friday, April 23, 2010

Cath won't blame will she


If I say that's how you play a hockey game. It's not like LA can score 6 goals in 1 min:))

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Thursday, April 22, 2010

Earth Day

Today is Earth day and I'm sorta in a whatever mode about it. Possibly because I feel conflicted about large portions of the environmental movement. I think we need to do alot more as a society to reduce, reuse and recycle. Frankly we buy way too much shit, or we (as my little family unit) until I became broke ass due to the birth of a monkey.

I don't need to have a bunch of knick knacks or the latest trendy clothing and I'm sorry Mr. Carpet Salesmen a $1000.00 area is NOT something I think is disposable if it gets stained. I want to be able to steam clean shit out. Sorry I don't think I need to buy new couches simply b/c my current ones are 10 years old. They should be built sturdy enough so that I can simply re-upholster them. Sorry but I don't need to replace my 5 year old ipod simply because its not as trendy as the newest version. Why does apple need to refresh it every 6 months? (mind you I was so annoyed waiting for the latest macbook update....)

However, I don't agree with the whole organic food movement. Organic is not better because its organic and buying local isn't always the best choice. Large farms are not the enemy simply because they are large. I may be have a bias since Mr.SM's family business deals with agriculture and because I'm training to be a geneticist and I understand the simply because something is genetically modified does not make it inherently bad for you. Its a bunch of grey zones, which is why I can go to my local snobby grocery store and find organic bananas that are cheaper than the non-organic fair trade bananas. You can't just look at a label, you have to actually think about and know who is doing what. There are larger farms that treat their employees well, pair fair wages and try to minimize their environmental impact because its the right thing to do, without a lot of fanfare. They've always done that.

Still because I believe that Global warming is happening and that we should make changes to our lives to minimize our impacts we have in the past year:

started car pooling
started composting - we have 1 small bag of garbage a week. If monkey could learn to poop in the freaking toilet, so we could start night time training, we'd be down even less.

oh and we use natural light whenever etc etc.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Beat down

I've written out and submitted to my PI the first 4 parts of my mock grant (the written portion of my comprehensive). Its have been a hard and brutal process. In good way. If that is possible. I am constantly getting my ass shredded to itty bitty bits by questions, things I need to know, things I need to think about. I just want to do science people! Stop haggling me with all these hypotheses, caveats and plan B's. I'm a genius don't you know! I have amazing hands and my experiments will work, giving clear and interpretable data!

No, i'm not a genius and yes I know these things are good for me. I swear this is the best place to be having this torture inflicted upon me, if there is such a thing as having a "good place to inflict torture". I just need to remember why I came here. Oh Yes that's right, I
wanted to learn how to do science properly. WTF was I thinking??!!! This doing science the right way, learning techniques so that I'm not bullshitting and I am respected is HARD people. Its freaking hard. Oh gosh yes its nice at the end of it all to know that I am respected, my work is valued and trusted but damn it my head hurts. My brain, throbs at the end of the work day. I didn't know that my brain could actually throb in pain from thinking too hard.

So I've completed three re-writes of the first 4 parts of the grant. The lit review, the prelim data, the General and specific questions, you know what I thought was the hard part. Hehehe. Uhm, yeah how am I going to answer those questions? What am I going to do? Exactly. Not maybe sorta, possibly, I was thinking. But EXACTLY.

I didn't think my brain could hurt even more.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The Mother of All Scientist Meme

Have some of you noticed that ScienceMama from Mother of All Scientists has not posted in awhile? I remember she had given congrats to Arlenna when she became a new mum and left a comment or two over at Isis's place, but other than that there has been little activity. I'm hoping its because ScienceMama's new little one has arrived and between a newborn, a young active girl and life, she just doesn't have time for us in the blogosphere.

I'm not sure if ScienceMama is reading blogs with no time to comment or is just lost in real life. Either way it would be nice to get an update. I also don't know how noticeable my little heading will be, but if we all post a shout out to her, maybe she'll pop by? I would do what Dr.Becca did with CEiA, but ScienceMama don't have no email posted! Is everyone in?

Saturday, April 10, 2010

What do you do when you don't like your family

I don't like my family. If I'm honest with myself, I never have. I can remember being little and wishing I would find out I was adopted, I dreamed of running away all the time. I tried leaving for my undergrad degree but I coudn't afford to leave on my own and my brother (the only one I actually get along with) was very upset at the thought of me leaving. At seventeen, my sense of family prevented me from deciding to leave.

In my last year of undergrad, I started looking into moving away for grad school, but then I met my husband and fell in love. If it wasn't for him, I would've left. Now we're tied here, because of his awesome family and his involvement with the business. I really do love his family. Yes I have a crazy SIL and my MIL irritates the crap out of me at times, but everyone has their moments. Overall she's a good a person, who treats me with respect.

My parents and sister on the other hand....are selfish and expect the world to revolve around them. I'm supposed to be there every other night, every weekend. I'm bad mom because I choose to go to school fulltime, because I have my kid on a routine. I don't call them every day.I don't let them interrupt bishan's night time rountine. How dare I ask my dad to bring my kid home before a certain time. How dare I expect my dad to ask me if he can take my kid swimming before he asks or tell my kid he's going to take him swimming. And he does that on purpose. He wants to my kid swimming (which is nice that he wants to do that) but instead of asking me, he tells my kid. Putting me in the position of having to say no or agree despite whatever plans we have. I'm sorry thats manipulative and just plain disrespectful.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Shit

I've ingested large quanities of beer and must now ski downhill to get back to my cabin.

That's wasn't very smart



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Friday, April 2, 2010

I should be proud and happy

But I'm sad. I feel so sad.

Mr.SM really really really wanted to get a few more ski trips in, so we're up at our cabin for the Easter Long weekend. Since I really really have to get this proposal finished (initial draft sent and received back), I was not willing to come. It was negotiated that I would come up and spend time with the family in the evenings, while the "boys" would ski during the day. Monkey's skiing consisted of going to daycare and having a 1 hour lesson.

This was a hard decision as I strongly feel that when we're away from home monkey's shouldn't be in daycare. Yes go in ski camps etc but he's in daycare all week, all year so these vacay days he shouldn't be in. Plus I wasn't sure how he would react to a new place.

Well ran in to the care place with NO issues - which I was actually happy about.
Mr.SM just picked him up and apparently my little monkey LOVED it and went down the BIG HILL!!!! This was his first time on ski's and he's bombing down the mountain!!! The little majic carpet was either broken or the wind made the conditions not very good there, so the instructor took my little boy, LITTLE boy up the chair lift and down the big mountain the FIRST TIME. And my child LOVED it.

I should be happy about this is, but I'm not.

I'm terrified because my child is my heart. And like me at his age, he has no fear. Have you been on a ski hill? Have you seen those freaking 2 foot speed demons bombing down the runs? Have you not seen the nutty thing kids do! My child will do those. I haven't nicked name him monkey just for kicks. And so I'm a terrified. I will not say anything. I will be proud of him and I will cheer him on and I will pray all day long.

I should be proud of him, how much fun he's having. But my little boy is now that much bigger and I am sad. I haven't posted much about how much he's growing, how independent he's getting. How he doesn't need me anymore. Yes I know he needs me, but not in that you're my security and I don't like it when you're not around way. Yes I know its good and its great to have the freedom. It is nice to know I can go away and he's OK. But it also hurts just that little bit. That little bit that I don't acknowledge. Its just happening too fast

Saturday, March 27, 2010

And then they say kids are not like pets

Heard in the SM household today:

"I wanna plaaay!!"

"OK, put your shoes and jacket on and I'll let you out"

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Away!

I'm away for the first time in three years. And I''m sick. you have to love the irony.

leaving was hard. monkey knew I was going and was not happy about it.....but he was fine once he got to daycare. I'll call home tonight to see how he is.

looking forward to some good science!

Friday, March 12, 2010

For all the working parents

You need to go read this right now. It made me cry, but it re-affirmed that I am doing the right thing but continuing on with my dreams.

I know, I know y'all tell me that everytime I question if I'm being selfish by putting so much into my career. The rare times, I've wondered out loud on the blog, you've all supported me and said the right things. I know in my head this is right.

But no one in my real life (outside of mr.sm) does. My family - parents and sister, constantly are making cracks about monkey not getting attention and not having a good childhood. Mr.SM and I are too busy, its not fair etc.

Perhaps I should ask you guys tell me I'm doing the right thing more often, but part of me thinks if I have ask, maybe its not the right thing.

All I know is my boy is happy and I'm happy. And he's going to be OK when I'm gone for a conference....

Yep I'm going away and its going to kill him. But he will be fine. He has his daddy and they will bond....

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Death by a thousand MB

actually 1.6 MB. Its 1:35am, and I need to email my PI a "final" version of a poster presentation. S/he is in a time way ahead of me so I have to send it tonight. S/he'll get it in the morning review and send it off to me by the time I get into the lab.

Except my file is 1.6MB over the gmail limit. I've converted the file to a PDF but the PDF is bigger than the actual file. WTF?!!!!!

I've spent the better part of 45 min trying to access some free download of adobe so that I can make a proper PDF, instead of a mac version....

For the first time in the history of ownership, i'm annoyed with my apple laptop. I just want to go to BED and I just want to have a pdf <25MB!!

URGHHH!!!!

I"m going to probably get to bed around 2am thats my guess. monkey will wake me up at 4 am to crawl into bed with me.....just mentally preparing.

the free online version worked!!! file is now only 1.1MB. YeaH!!! emailing and off to bed!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Focus

I need to set a date for my comprehensives. My PI refuses to let me set a date until I send her a research proposal (she told me this awhile ago). Damn PI and her be a responsible adult and figure shit out attitude (JOKE!).

I can't focus. To the point that I have been banned from the bench. Yep our lab manager, post doc and senior grad student have banned me from doing any science until I start writing. I've written a first draft but I must get a completed draft to by the end of next week to my PI and I have to have a poster made up by monday.

Do you know what I'm doing now? watching tv with my coffee, writing blogs and yep not writing (a proposal). I'm also going to go grocery shopping and look at dogs from Mr.SM bday...

i'm such a procrastinator

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Something is in the hockey water

First we blew away Russia. Something I don't think anyone expecting. Now Slovakia is leading Sweden. Maybe I don't know as much as I thought I did, but I was pretty sure Sweden wasn't supposed to struggling against the Slovakian's. Mind you, I'm also pretty sure that Latvia wasn't supposed to take Czech Republic to overtime.

2 goals in less than 2 minutes. From 3-2, to 4-3 Slovaks. Wow what a good game. I'm supposed to be sleeping! Oh well only 6 hours nigh nigh time today....

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Go Latvia Go!!!

I am so rooting for the underdog! Oh Chall I wish NBC would show this to you. How amazing that Latvia has taken Chezks to overtime!


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OMG!!


We can't score against Germany in a pier play?!!!

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Sunday, February 21, 2010

All of Canada crys

We're losing. OMG!!! To the USA:((((


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Thursday, February 18, 2010

Really, it's freaking SUI!!!

I can not believe that we can't brat freaking Switzerland in regulation time!!!!


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Wednesday, February 17, 2010

For ScienceGirl

Its a virtual baby shower! Woohoo! Our very own ScienceGirl is going to become a mom to a little girl. I'm so excited to have another person to talk to about poop. Yep, new parents talk alot about poop. Since monkey is already 3 and we're still talking about it, I figure it goes on for long time.

I try to not give advice to new parents, because I really hated hearing about all the things I should do. However, there are some things I wish some one did say to me so here's what I wish someone told me:

  • Go shopping. Happy mommy makes a happy baby. I was sick of my maternity clothes by the time I gave birth, but obviously did not fit into my regular clothes. I strongly believe that no one should be trying to lose in 2 months, what took 9 months to build (that tummy that housed and cared for your little bundle of joy is not going to disappear overnight - Nor should it!). I bought cheap transition clothes that let me feel like I was wearing clothes that fit me and I looked good in. Happy mommy makes a happy baby.
  • It is OK to want to throw your baby out the window. For some reason everyone thinks you're supposed to want to be with the baby all the freaking time and that suddenly you're this amazingly patient person that doesn't mind having their life run by a baby. Its frustrating and its OK to be frustrated. The problem become if you actually throw the baby out.
  • It is OK to put yourself first. Happy mommy make a happy baby.
  • It is OK not to breastfeed. I breastfed for > year and LOVED it, but I realize that some woman can not / do not want to be attached that way. Its OK. Do what is best for you. Happy Mommy makes a happy baby.

You might be noticing a theme here, Happy Mommy = Happy Baby. I encourage you to do what makes you happy, both mentally and physically. There is so much pressure on woman these days to be the perfect mom, to do this for your baby because OMG if you don't you're ruining their life. In my short time as a mom, I've realized that when I'm not mentally or physically happy its the jumping off point for monkey to be unhappy. So yeah, maybe monkey is going to be in daycare for one more hour so that I can get a mental break, but I will be a better mom because of that break.

I wish you so much happiness and health. Congratulations!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Fiddlers and KD lang


Those fiddlers were awesome! KD lang rocks she always gives it her all.

Oh and poem was very cool.

I love that we had a female astronaut as a flag bearer.

We tried to showcase a variety of cultures prominant in Vancouver, but still had to leave a bunch out, noticeabley Japanese/ Chinese contributions.

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Go Canada Go!!!

The olympics are starting. I'm so excited!!! we're currently watching the opening ceremonies, totally psyched up. I"m so impressed by the range of countries, I mean seriously India has a team (only 3 athletes but still!!!)

I'm sad to say that I'm a bit disappointed by the lack of diversity within teams. I can't help but notice that teams like Great Britain and France, which are such diverse multi-ethnic countries, had very homogeneous looking teams. Canada and USA haven't walked out yet, so fingers crossed that we'll do better, but I doubt it.

Now I don't think that lack of diversity in the teams is due to any sort of systemic / institutional racism, I'm fully aware (from experience) that immigrant families put more emphasis on things like academics and jobs than on sports. Still, since there are so many 2nd and 3rd generation ethnic brits, that there would some colored people....

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Epiphanies come in the strangest ways

My Dad came by this evening to drop the monkey off and have dinner with me. We chatted about minor things and then the discussion went to my elder single brother. My parents are stressed about the whole singleness of him and his lack of desire to settle down, have children with a white picket fence. Thing is my brother is ambitious and as an ambitious individual myself I understand his frustration in relationships which I tried explaining to my dad. If you're ambitious and are dating / married to an ambitious individual it can be hard on a relationship because of the numerous competing interests. Exhibit A being being the mister and I.

I can honestly say that if Mr.SM and I did not get married when we did, we would not be together today. My interests would've taken me elsewhere, my focus on my career combined with his focus on his career and our social lives would've left little time for each other and I'm not sure that we would've stuck it through. I know that during my masters studies, it was such a relief not to have to make time to "date". I didn't have to worry about having to choose between partying with my friends and seeing my boyfriend. I was married and spent time with Mr.SM every morning and night. Sometimes we did our thing on own thing on the weekends, sometimes we didn't. As we've grown together, we've made comprises for each other. If I was single, but the same person I am now, I know I wouldn't make these compromises for someone today. I think my brother has been single for so long he's not willing to compromise. To which my dad suggested that my brother date someone less ambitious. My brother has tried this and tends to get into issues because his dating partner will be exasperated by his long hours. Its hard if you're the one sitting at home waiting for your partner to be done. Or having your plans cancelled because something at work came up. I get this too because Mr.SM is working 2 jobs and I get shafted. Which is when the epiphany came. My Dad, being the protective father he is, expressed frustration at how much Mr.SM works at the family business without monetary compensation. I had to explain to my dad how it is Mr.SM's dream to be able to grow his family's business to the point that him and his brothers can each pull out six figure salaries. The business is currently not big enough to do that and because I'm a graduate student, Mr.SM can not give up his day job to work full time at making his dream. He has to work to pay for our mortgage, daycare, monkeys extracurricular activities etc. Which is when it hit me. I get so frustrated that Mr.SM isn't home, isn't doing x,y or z at home but he's literally working 2 jobs so that I can go to graduate school and get my PhD.
That's pretty damn supportive. He's far from perfect and has an issue with putting his needs first all the time. But he's supporting me financially and emotionally which is pretty huge. Sometimes I need to be reminded of that.