Saturday, April 25, 2015

Limping Across the Finish Line

Around 5am the day that Mod1 was due, I sleepily told myself that Mod2 was going to be different. I was going to start writing it earlier, I was going to go talk to a writing advisor, I was going read all of the articles about NHEJ and our possible inhibitors, and understand this module inside out.

And then the ghost of overcommitments past came knocking on my door when the Mod2 deadline got moved up to the Monday right after CPW.

This year, I was the CPW chair for my dorm and performing in a musical during CPW. This meant I was busy 6pm-2am rehearsing and performing from the Sunday before CPW to the night of the following Sunday, when I would help deconstruct the stage. Any time I wasn’t in class or eating or trying to grab some sleep, I was running CPW events. Rooming for my dorm was also the Saturday before CPW.

I did the mental math in my head and realized that I had only the Friday night and Sunday morning of the week before CPW and Monday morning of the due date to start and finish writing Mod2. Not including sleep. And also not including a pset, an exam, and a UROP proposal I had to do the week of CPW. Cue internal freak out.

White cat has panic attack in bed

So, I got a two day extension and ran with it. In the tiny window of time before CPW, I finish making my graphs for the article. Starting the Monday that Mod2 was originally due, I crunched away at the results section and excitedly saw faint connections between the rate of NHEJ and the topology of the DNA breaks. I continued through a haze of sleep deprivation to flesh out my introduction and bring out the interesting points of my research for the discussion section. As I neared the end of the article and wrote about future plans, I saw that I had some idea of what we could do by the end of the experiment. What if I just tweaked the topologies… or change up the concentration of the drugs with the flow cytometry…? I had an idea of how to conduct a future experiment, and that was a first! I had never been able to do that before!

In short, I got very, very little sleep (most of which came from sleeping through my alarm and falling asleep at the keyboard while writing Mod2), and still didn’t turn Mod2 in time. But I finished. It’s done. And I know how to kinda figure out how to do future experiments! Hopefully.

Now I’m going to sleep like 1000000 hours...

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