Wednesday, May 16, 2007

A little off

I'm feeling a little off today. Some of it is that I haven't really slept in about a week (although last night was the best of the bunch, by far). Some of it is my personal issues with lab. And some of it is adjusting mentally to the pregnancy. If you don't mind a little rambling, I'll fill you in.

So lab stuff first. The last week or two, I've gotten terribly lazy in lab. I take all responsibility for it. Yes, I'm still doing my cells and collecting samples. And I've got enough administrative stuff to take care of that I'm busy every day (gotta love being assigned all the former technician's jobs). But I am usually pretty good about making sure my experiments are my priority. The last few weeks, I just haven't. I've got four gels with Western blots to run. That's about a day and a half of experiments, and not tough ones at that. I run gels on a regular basis. No big deal.

And yet I just haven't been able to bring myself to do it. Sure, I've had doctor's appointments, the VA clinic, and a whole day of seminars that have gotten in my way. But that usually just means I stay late or come in on the weekend to get it done. I haven't.

My boss hasn't really been on me yet, and he shouldn't have to be. I'm pretty self-motivated (although an occasional deadline always helps). I've got my next thesis committee meeting in mid-July, and I'd like to be on my way to nearly done by then. I know I need to run these gels to see how my experiments are progressing, but I just haven't done it.

Like I said, it's all on me. I'm not going to try and pass this one off. I just don't want to do the work. I'm exhausted, I'm frustrated, and I have so many other things that need my attention.

I guess this translates into me being burnt out.

I don't have the luxury of taking a week off to recharge. I only get two weeks of vacation a year, and I already used one in Aruba. With appointments and baby stuff, I need those last five days. I guess I've sort of been vacationing from my experiments while still at work. That's not the best way to do things--it doesn't help the burnout, and it doesn't help me progress in my work.

I get in these funks occasionally. I also have spurts of much activity and progress. I'm hoping to get into one of those spells soon. I know I just need to buckle down and do it. I'm a big girl. I don't need to give the lab the silent treatment to show that I'm angry with it. I can move past that.

Anyway, enough lab venting. I really think the lack of sleep is not helping my mood at all. I can't explain why I'm not sleeping--I'm tired, I've made the bed as comfortable as possible, I do all the stupid stuff (drink warm milk, do the yoga relaxation stuff, etc) they say to do, and I still get maybe an hour or two of sleep a night.

Last night was an exception. I was totally exhausted from horses and just collapsed. I don't know what it was about yesterday that wore me out so much. It's about 7 miles or so of walking/jogging with the horses for three classes, but I've been doing that for a long time. It didn't bother me last week. Maybe it was the fact that it was 88 degrees outside. Or maybe it was that I was already tired from not sleeping. I don't know, but I felt like someone had kicked the crap out of me. My muscles ached everywhere. It was everything I could do to stay up for an hour and talk to Tim (that's not usually a chore, really). I basically passed out as soon as I hit the bed.

The nice thing was, the thunderstorms came through and dropped the temperature 30 degrees overnight. That meant the air was cool and damp. Perfect for sleeping. I only got up three or four times last night, and I wasn't awake for too long. I probably got almost 7 hours of sleep. It made it so difficult to get out of bed that I ended up moseying into lab about an hour later than I usually do. Of course, that's when everyone else is usually showing up, so I didn't feel too bad.

I still feel wiped. I wish I could've stayed home and slept all day. But I came in to run my gels. Of course, now I'm stuck trying to rectify all this ordering crap that I wasn't even involved in, plus I have to clean out and disinfect an incubator. So, that's why I'm here. And that's why the gels will wait another day.

I've got a lot on my mind about the pregnancy stuff too, but I think I want to sit and reflect on that for a day. I want to talk about what's going on in my head without sounding like an ungrateful beyotch, so that's going to take some wording work. I'll try and fill you in on that tomorrow. For now, back to my menial lab tasks for another day.

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