Monday, September 7, 2009

Reconsidering, again

So I've been thinking about the baby thing again lately... I'm
driving Hubby absolutely nuts with all of my indecision, so he says
it's up to me, just let him know when I've decided it's time. I
really want it to be now, and I've pretty much decided we can make the
daycare thing work out one way or another. We've got some credit card
debt that, if paid off, would free up a few hundred dollars a month.
We've got staggered schedules, mine is very flexible, and I could
probably work from home half the time, so we may be able to get a away
with only part-time childcare. I think we can do it. Plenty of
people raise kids with less. And everyone I talk to about how badly I
want a baby says "just do it!" Apparently a couple of my classmates
are getting pretty baby crazy too, so I think we should all have them
at once and use our strength in numbers to demand more family-friendly
polices. :-) So now I'm sure you're wondering "Well
then, what are you waiting for? Go for it already!"
Well, it seems we're back to "it all depends on funding." You see,
even though my project got funding, that little award was just a drop
in the bucket compared to all the funding our lab has lost. We're in
a really shitty situation until something new comes through. There
are a couple of things pending that we should hear back on by the end
of the month, but if neither of them come through, the first round of
lay-offs will come in the spring. That'll be the two postdocs who've
been here the longest. Then if the thing we're submitting next
doesn't come through, the whole lab tanks next fall. I'm not too
worried about losing my own position, since I've got that small grant
to cover part of my stipend and the cost of my animals and supplies,
combined with a guarantee of backup funding from my graduate program.
However, I'm not comfortable with the idea of taking time off for
maternity leave (whether paid or unpaid), while the lab is slowly
drowning and thrashing about wildly from interim sources of funding to
keep us afloat. Beloved PI is in full on panic mode, putting ever
increasing pressure on us to publish our existing work and produce
more preliminary data for new grant proposals. Unless we hear very
soon that there is some new funding coming through, next summer is not
looking like the best time to duck out for a couple of months. The
fall, on the other hand, might be a perfect time to take a break,
because there won't be a lab left to feel such loyalty to.

So I'm thinking I'll put off the baby-making decision until at least
the end of this month, when we'll have a better idea of the lab's
financial outlook for the coming year. If the lab gets funding and
we're okay, we'll start trying for a baby immediately. If no stopgap
funding materializes, I'll wait to get pregnant until the due date
would come after the end of the current grant cycle, so that my
(unpaid) maternity leave coincides with the gap in funding, and hope
that Beloved PI is still employed by Excellent U by the time I intend
to return. (I'll save my bitterness and confusion about the meaning
of tenure at Excellent U for another post.)

Sent from my mobile device

1 comment:

  1. I can't believe you sent this whole post from your mobile! Impressive. I've found meditative silence helps me answer important questions I can't see the answer to.