With "the" paper out of the door, life is a lot, lot better. I stand back and take a look at it, and realize that it's a really good, thorough piece of work. All that added work the referees made us do indeed made it even better, although it is still debatable whether all that supplementary data and analyses were within the scope of my work: they made us generate enough preliminary data for the next round of experiments, certainly not entirely warranted. But, whatever. It's out, its done, and its looking good. :)
I feel a mixture of pride and relief. I got really lucky in not getting scooped, although I came eerily close to it. After all, I dragged my feet on the paper for almost two years now, during which everyone had jumped onto the bandwagon. And although I had made my mark because I was the first to present this stuff at meetings and conferences, it would all be moot if somebody else published it before me. Had that happened, I would have only myself to blame. Now, finally, I can stop nervously tracking the literature everyday to see if somebody beat me to it and its a huge relief to be able to finally put my name to something that I was the first to find in my field.
Finally, this is past glory and I can only bask in it for so long. I have got to move on, to better, bigger things. Indeed, getting it out definitely helps me be more focused and confident in my post-doc trails, not to mention makes me a much happier person in general. So yeah, onward and upward!
In other news, I've been in a rather bad mood for the past day or so. Not exactly sure why. Am planning a weekend trip but not even excited about that as I would've usually been. Partly its the anti-social-ness of my lab mates that has begun to get to me. While very nice and helpful, they speak to me only when spoken to, and otherwise stick to conversing among themselves, in, of course, a language that I do not speak or understand. (No prizes for guessing which one). It has gotten quite annoying now. At the other end of the spectrum is another annoying person on the floor who greets you with the most plastic wide fake smile ever, always. I am craving for some fun hallway buddies to have a general conversation with.. Most days it feels like I come to work and go home at the end without a decent social interaction.