Saturday, August 29, 2009


I think when I look back on this past year, I will most associate it with transition. Indeed the position of postdoc is transitory in nature, designed to help scientists bridge the gap between grad school and their permanent careers. As someone who naturally experiences anxiety, it hasn't been great for my psyche. But it has been great for forcing me to figure out who I am and for Dean and I to realize what we want out of our life together. Turns out we really want air conditioning and a few nearby chain restaurants. Who knew?

Yesterday was my last day at Brown. In one year I went from a relatively new Ph.D. eager to experience scientific life outside that lab I "grew up" in. I came away with a firm resolve with how science should be done, how I can contribute to that with my own skills and how I can cultivate scientific relationships to help me succeed in my goals while helping others achieve the same. This is no small feat in such a large community with such a wide range of styles and attitudes.

I am still digesting many of my experiences and I think many of the benefits of this past year have yet to be revealed. For now, I'd like to put a little distance between myself and this year before I try to describe my feelings on it any more.

Right now, we're looking to the future and it is coming at us like a freight train. The movers are coming Friday to both pack us up and load our things onto the truck. Friday night we'll drive to Maryland. Before then, we are taking a couple days of much needed rest before getting things in order. There isn't too much to do, mostly getting the cars serviced, getting organized and cleaning up. We'll have a week in Maryland before my new job starts, which will consist of hopefully getting new furniture and getting unpacked. We're ridiculously excited. I'm not sure how much writing I'll do before we leave, but per Jenn's request, I'll definitely take some pictures when we get there and as we're settling in. Before then, I'll just share my impulsive haircut I got yesterday. I thought I had turning 30 out of my system, but the 20s-to-30s transition coupled with my impending grown up job made me decide to cut 5 inches off my hair and get serious about looking professional. What do you think?


Jeni said...

Good luck with the move! Hope it all goes very easily and smooth as glass for you. Where -in the DC area -did you decide on for your new home? Maryland, the District or Virginia? I know it is ridiculously expensive there with respect to housing but it is still a great area in which to live and so many sights to see, great restaurants and such. Just enjoy your time there as much as possible.

Natalie said...

Maryland. Specifically Gaithersburg. It is the last stop on the metro line. Just North of there where the metro can't be accessed is actually pretty cheap but each town south of there gets progressively more expensive. Since Dean doesn't have a job yet we didn't want to rule out him begin able to take the metro so we decided we should stay on the line. Plus, it is the same town where I'll be working. I am so excited to geek out on all the historic sights. We were (with sadness) watching Ted Kennedy's funeral but at the same time getting so excited to be able to go the mall and all the museums whenever we want.

Dianne said...

I think you look both beautiful and professional

I like how you're dealing with your anxiety by turning it into both reflective thought and excitement for the future

Ya know I'm going to drive down to DC and visit you all

Anonymous said...

Very chic look! Good luck with the move and your new job. And hope Dean finds a new job soon as well. Is he still working in the sports field?

Christopher said...

Air conditioning and chain restaurants – that’s hilarious. I’ll meet you half way (for all I know you can get a McCrabcake out there :-)) How can you stand it: new job, new city, new home and new furniture – incredible!

I love your cut, you look grown up and so beautiful!

MIL said...

Christopher is right. You do look beautiful. This is all so exciting! So long, Providence!

fermicat said...

Looking good!

You have done your time preparing and being unsettled. Enjoy your new position and life. You guys need to finally settle down.

Keep those cat photos coming!

Hot4Teacha said...

Cute hair!

gabrielle said...

You look beautiful, brimming with quiet exhilaration. We are so excited for you! This move feels like a perfect fit.

dancingo4 said...


Hope you are enjoying your time off and we are so excited for your next adventures :-)