A Recovering Perfectionist on Motherhood

Vincent_van_Gogh_-_First_Steps,_after_Millet

I’ve never considered myself a baby person. I’d always been the sort to say “I might not want kids,” sometimes just to see how people responded, but mostly because I really wasn’t sure. After my ideas about parenthood softened, however, and I observed that the flexibility I had as a PhD student could be advantageous, my partner and I decided to go for it.

I thought I had everything figured out: I was in the last year of my program and was a shoe-in for a prestigious post-doc position close to home. Tending toward the over-achiever-perfectionist side of the spectrum, my plan was simple: 1) finish writing my dissertation while pregnant, 2) have the baby in the spring, 3) start the post-doc at the end of the summer, 4) excel at said post-doc and advance in career, 5) balance motherhood in the mix during said career advancement.

You see how this is going to go, don’t you? (read more…)