February 14, 2010

Today I received an email for a conference at the beginning of June. “Congrats, you’ve been accepted for the ……”. I feel a little naughty even thinking beyond the birth of this baby. I had to a lot of field work shuffling this summer because I had 3 international trips scheduled and needed to nix them all. I say things like, “Once this baby is here safely, I can do….”   With my last one I had a mental block and could not think beyond the birth but for this one, I have to or else….or else what really?  My students will not get any work done. My work will grind to a screeching halt. My family will go the summer without seeing family. There are worse things (as we all know). The point being is that I have been thinking beyond and accommodating the birth of a child. I will have to get a passport and visa for this baby. I need to check on flights to make sure I pay the taxes for a baby in the lab?  How do I give a talk at a conference with a baby wrapped to me?  I am enjoying the challenge of thinking up solutions but I’m really amazed that I can think beyond. Is it optimism or is it just being naive?  I know what can happen; I just pray that it doesn’t happen again.

I also scheduled a conference 3 weeks before my due date. Why? Because I promised colleagues that I would do it before I knew I was pregnant. In fact, 7 weeks before I am due, I’m chairing another conference in Baltimore. Why?  I thought it was a good idea. Now, all the conferences and committments I made before I was pregnant are piling up. So, I will do it. I’m going to take the train to the one where I’m 37 weeks pregnant so I don’t have to drive. I can sit and do work and get up and walk. I’ve never taken an Amtrak train. I’ve traveled all over Europe on the train but never in the US. I’m looking forward to the experience.

One comment

  1. I vote optimism. It’s hard sometimes – but when it does bubble to the surface – how wonderful it feels.

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