Welcome To The Bitchery
Welcome To The Bitchery

Yesterday started out so well- my first full day with the house being completely mine, no scheduled interactions with anyone, and low expectations for productivity since I had just gotten back from a conference - and for another reason.

I also got a revise and resubmit from a journal for the manuscript based on my dissertation - I thought it would be brutally rejected, so this was fantastic! The comments were also nice, which was heartening.

It all went downhill from there.

I forgot I had a conference call in the afternoon. The call went fine - I just wanted to be 100% alone.


Someone put sticky paper on the side of our building to catch pests - and one of them stuck to my kitchen window with a mouse dying on it. It gutted me (I am a very longtime vegetarian who loves all animals). I tried to loosen it by opening my screen - but that didn’t work and I didn’t have anything long enough to try to loosen it. I put some newspaper on my window to hide it and will try to find my super today (I didn’t have it in me yesterday to deal with him). But it is extremely distressing.

I accidentally bumped one of my bookcases (Ikea Billy Bookcase) and the side loosened a bit and all the shelves fell. I didn’t bump into it hard - the side has been askew for a while. I ordered some gorilla wood glue - hopefully that will fix it.

Then the worst - the reason I wanted to not interact with anyone and didn’t expect much productivity yesterday is that my NIH grant was being reviewed yesterday and I knew I would spend the day refreshing the website for my score. NIH grants pretty much always require more than one try - you build at least one revise and resubmit into your timeline because it is very rarely funded on the first try. I had thought mine had a decent chance because I had piloted the study, I had more than 20 people read my grant application, and I thought the application was strong. I really wanted it to be funded on the first try because it would improve my professional and personal circumstances significantly.

At like 4:50, my score was posted and it is not anywhere close to what would likely be funded. My score is better than unicorn postdoc’s score was on his K, but unlike him my program officer is unlikely to recommend it for funding (he got a not great score, but he got funded on the first try - because he is a unicorn) so I will have to try again. It will be a month, most likely, before I get the reviews - so I have no idea what they disliked.


This means another year as a postdoc - another year on a postdoc salary, another year sitting at a desk in the middle of an open floor (getting a K would mean I’d get an office), another year of being a trainee instead of an independent researcher, and it means I probably need to get another roommate.

Then last night my mentor emailed me with a job ad for a postdoc position and she asked me to read it because she wants to use it as a model for hiring a new postdoc. I wanted to write back that maybe she should pay attention to the postdoc she has now? Over the past 2 months, we have met once I think? (we are supposed to meet weekly). She couldn’t make time before I went to my conference last week to talk through my presentation. She didn’t ask me how it went. She also didn’t ask about my NIH grant.  Why does she think she has time for another postdoc?


Anyway - I am beyond depressed right now and dreading having to go to school/work and sit at my desk in the open office and try to act like everything is ok (I don’t plan on telling anyone for a while).

Sorry this was so long.  Please tell me how you are!

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