I’ve been feeling pretty emo ever since I started grad school. There was so much naivety and confusion, that it really felt (feels) like a second adolescence: emo seems like the right word. Grad school became a sink-or-swim proposition and I think the emo-ness was a rational part of my confusion and fear of failure.
Areas of confusion: Am I smart enough to be a scientist? How do you publish a paper? What is even involved in being a professor? What careers would satisfy my intellectual desires and be compatible with my other needs as a human person?
But I really hoped all this would settle down by the time I finished grad school. I’m now a second year postdoc, and after much further angst I’ve figured out that I am approximately smart enough, and how to publish a paper. Some of the confusion has been resolved, but despite thinking about it constantly, I still don’t know what I’m doing after this postdoc. Some of this might be specific to the fact that I am a woman, and that I work in computational biomedical research. I’m hoping I can use this space to document/encourage my progress in figuring out my career and also in negotiating the psychological aspects of being a scientist.