Thursday, May 10, 2007
How low can I go?
I've actually been maintaining a pretty even keel this week. My lab work has finally - Finally!!! - yielded enough variable chloroplast characters that I can say with some confidence yes, my group shows variation. Out of more than 5000 bases sequenced, I found 9 whole variations. Halle-freakin'-lujah. Next week I learn to clone so I can tease apart my ITS copies. We're not sure where that line of work might lead, but when odd patterns show up in the sequences, we might as well pursue them a bit.
I'm studying during most of my free time. I'm understanding things. The semester is over so I can devote more time to my proposal. Things are... okay. But today, one of my school friends, a wonderful and well-intentioned person, was so full of helpful advice and prelim tips that a few minutes later I went into a full-fledged panic attack. It was really scary, not to mention I was terrified of anyone actually seeing me hyperventilating and close to throwing up, so I ran to the second floor and hid for about ten minutes until I could breathe normally. All the way home I was an absolute wreck. I don't blame her - she was just trying to help - but if I hear another piece of advice about prelims I am going to go ballistic. I need a hat that says "DO NOT TALK TO ME ABOUT PRELIMS". As DH said, with his usual talent for appropriate metaphors, the work I have ahead of me is like a mountain, the most steep and daunting mountain imaginable. All I can deal with at any moment is the two or three steps immediately ahead of me, because if I stand back and look at the vastness of the mountain I will be overwhelmed and stop climbing. My friend is the mountain climber who is scampering back down from the top and telling me about all the stuff she saw on the way.
Two or three steps at a time. It's all I can do.
Rats. Happy things: saw an indigo bunting at our birdfeeder. My Geum triflorum is blooming; I have a picture to put on the other blog but I don't feel like fixing the ftp settings. Most of the grading is done for the semester, although out of the goodness of my heart I am regrading two exams of students who appear to have frame-shifted their scantron answers. Am TAing the same class again in the fall - hopefully with fewer than 160 students this time.
Now must study coalescent theory. Yipee-ki-yay.