Astrobiology Blues (by )

So as many people know I wanted to be an astrobiologist and I got quiet close and then a combo of things got in the way - the main one was not actually Jeany but rather the health complications before, during and after the pregnancy. I tried to go back when Jeany started pre-school but again this ended in disastor both financially and again medically. It then became clear that there was no way even if I sorted out the instant issue of me having to pay 'top-up' fees and took another break to completely recover, I still couldn't do it due to Alaric's job and Jeany care.

At the time my mother was going through her second lot of cancer treatment and a few other issues had popped up. I had reached the glass ceiling - I had reached it probably as soon as I got pregnant with Jean but was still determined - now the decission was clear - family verses career.

And so I stopped kidding myself that I was on a 'break' from science and faced up to facts. It didn't help that I was failing at being a web-designer at the same time - a career I had thought should bring in money and be doable from home - except.. except people still expect you to turn up to meetings and things and then I was just shunted to the side by people offering shoddy but cheap web-development and I ran into people assuming I can't do things 'properlly' cos I'm female - I'm sorry but I did get this several times. So travel and child care for no contracts = FAIL. Add in clients refusing to pay for months and it was another no go.

And so before I am 30 years old I am basically on my 3rd career and not with nice financial boosters from the previous ones :/ But rather stupid amounts of debt.

But I thought I'd got over all of this - thought I was being happy with what I am building - having sold a painting, having stories accepted, getting poems short listed etc... I'd even stopped crying everytime I looked at my minerallogy texts books and started reading the texts I'd gotten to help me become a good Astrobiologist. I had and have for a long time had some vague notion of being able to write popular science books - to bring it to the public and when I run the Scouts I spent ages making up projects for their science and astronomy badges etc.. both scientific and craft (like loo roll hubble which I really need to put the how-to instructions up for!).

But I get told - you can't do that unless you are part of the science world. I have also got an issue in not having access to the journals I want nor could I even contemplate a subscription. I don't think I can belong to alot of the groups as you have to be put forward by peers which I now do not have and those I did have either forgotten me or are peeved that I let things get in the way.

And so my science - all that hard work is generally used for what? Advising the odd writer on how to build aliens and alien worlds convincingly, similar with gaming both role playing and computer games and my tentative steps into things like the paleo-art. Most of the time I convince myself that this is all fine - that this is me still being part of the science world. My science/tech poetry etc... the same.

But then there is an announcement about NASA and astrobiology and a deep depression feels me. I wanted to ignore it - after all what was I going to get if I even tried looking into this? Pain over being excluded from the actual scientific community, of not having access to papers nor people to chat about them over coffee or my standard pint of OJ in the bar. No debates, just my mum looking at me slightly blank and my little girl drawing me pictures of 'germs' to cheer me up.

So I tried to ignore it - thinking how stupid it was that I was crying over not being a scientist and putting it down to this lot of pregnancy hornmones.

And then some how from this I found myself scouring the net for any info and finding just how much the general public had got their knickers in a twist with info that was being reported wrong and that there was going to be a press conference live from NASA.

So I rearranged the family evening to watch it and snapped at my family that no they couldn't have my laptop and then spent this morning writing about it on my rarely updated Astronomy blog. This made me feel better - but I still haven't got the paper to read :/ And I'm not even sure why I took notes of the press conference and why I had to write about it.

Part of it was a friend telling me Carl Sagan would be sad if he knew I was hiding from science because I can be active in it. Alaric keeps telling me it's not too late for my science career but really it is. And I have to think like that or I will just be 'waiting' to do real things and miss out on my lovely family. I'm also generally being moppy at the moment - I am stuck - I have a sprained wrist and there is ice so going out even with crutches, even with car is not happening, writing and art are at a minimium and guitar and drums completely out.

I'm afraid I have the Astrobiology Blues and a case of the green eyes of research envy (put it this way I planned an experiment during GCSE biology to try and force microbes to use Si instead of C my reasoning was that they could both form chains and sheets and things - I was going on valencies - I wasn't allowed to run the experiment as it would take to long and be too expensive!).

There isn't really a point to this post by the way - it's just another - this is how I'm feeling.

Being Demanding (by )

I'm afraid that after last year of a single fan heater and the gas fire in the office and an exploding solid fuel fire and frozen water pipes I have been a bit militant this year. The year before we used the gas parabolics but I ended up rejecting them for rooms with a hyper small child plus they were only supposed to be tempory - Alaric thought his big gas heater could replace them.

The new fire works woderfully but it is still not enough to heat the whole house in the snow. Now Alaric doesn't feel the cold like I do so I stole his thermometer to prove how cold it gets - I then checked what acceptable work place temperatures. I have since obtained a large roll of bubble wrap and demanded it be put up on the windows - there are still a few upatairs that need doing.

I have also broken the covernant and bought - oil filled radiators (well actually mum and dad loaned me some money for some and I moaned at Alaric until he bought a third and then without even consulting him I have perchased a forth). These are making a suprising difference to the over all temperature of the house - as in I can actually do some things in the morning.

Of course Alaric got me the heated blanket and stuff last year which has been brilliant and my hot pads.

I am being militant for Jeany and Alaric as well as me and baby (who is due end of Jan so there could still be snow). I know he's trying to do whats right for his family - we're still working our way out of debt ect... so fuel budget was specifucally calculated and he's worried radiators will hike our electricity bill drastically and that we wont be able to pay it and be cut off and then have no way to work or cook etc.. He is not being some big troll being mean - which is what some people have suggested.

But I think on this one I have to do whats safest for my family and that includes him - I don't want him hurt again like last year and I suppose I am just being more militant about the house due to pregnancy - though it's in a worse state than ever as I just can't tidy very well 🙁

This post is being written one handed due to wrist acting up - which means crutches are a no go except for vital things and my main craft and writing are out as well which sucks.

I am aware that Alaric is struggling at the moment with work (still being up till stupid o'clock and being tired all the time) and I feel bad for putting this extra worry on him - but radiators just plug in and give heat and are easy. Part of it is - talking to Barbara and her friends I started to think it was me over reacting about the cold. But I have been talking to other mothers - and my conclusion is that I am right - my child/children need warmth - apart from the fact that I can't move at all if I get too cold.

What I'm hoping is that with my overdraft paid off as of yesterday - I can use my money and family allowance to pay any excess electricity costs. Leaving the fuel budget for the wood and the gas heater.

WordPress Themes

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 UK: England & Wales
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 UK: England & Wales