Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The Grant-Writer Scientist's Wife

It's only my husband's 2nd year as in a tenure-track job and I'm already getting tired of all the grant writing. And this is because the real deal (applying for NSF & other agencies) hasn't even started yet, these are his "trial runs" with university and state sponsored grants.

The thing is, preparing for teaching at the beginning or one's career does take hours upon hours (over 10 hours [mostly at home] each week for him, not counting grading, office hours, etc.) and when you add time at the university teaching, trying to run the lab, etc.... if you add grant writing to the equation, wow... there's one busy professor! So... in anticipation of his upcoming deadline and also our trip, K is pulling an all-nighter at the university. Sigh.

Digression: Why am I still up, BTW? Well, my youngest son asked me to lay down with him and I "dozed on an off" for about 2 hours. I got up at 12:45 and then spent one whole hour cleaning the kitchen (which totally made me want to have domestic help) and one whole hour answering email, and wasting precious minutes of my life on facebook (gotta hate that, but it sure is nice to be in touch with a few people -- I should unsubscribe from a lot of others).

But back to the subject at hand, this feels very similar to what it felt to be the wife of a newly-started-in-the-lab wannabe-scientist graduate student husband (with a crazy army trained Israeli post-doc as a vice-boss). K spent many nights in the lab running experiments back in 1999. I'm glad he moved to a different lab later and then he only pulled various all-nighters right before the annual conference in his field.

All right, I should go sort the laundry and try to pack my bag for the trip a little more and... hopefully sleep.

Should I disclose that I was supposed to be grading now and pulling my own all-nighter? It goes without saying that this is the last thing I want to do in the world, so I'm procrastinating like I always do. No wonder my sons left their work on their school project that is due tomorrow for the last minute as well (hence the late bedtime, hence the exhausted parent who had to help them write their reports). A pathetic family of procrastinators, we are. Sigh.

Not my poor husband, though! He's been working on this grant literally for years... He's come a long, long way from those days as a dedicated graduate student and I'm sure all his efforts will pay off in the end, but it will take many more nights of patient wifely waiting for that to happen!

Edited to add: K got home less than 10 minutes after I posted this (3:14), yay! I get to talk to my husband! And I hope he gets this grant.

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