What prompted me to step back and take stock (and blog) was the realization that I have added little value to my life in the past one year. I feel like this has been the hardest year in some ways, so I was justified in not taking bigger strides to get some tangible achievements- I was just busy living and figuring stuff out along the way.
1. R2I. Made it through the initial wave of reverse culture shock.
2. Got a decent job within a month of landing- proud of that.
3. Job allows me to exert my research skills about 40 to 50% of the time. The rest is people-management, presentation making etc. So honed that part too.
4. Job also got me authorship (Even if 1 of a dozen authors) in a decent paper. Feels good to see my publication track not stagnate.
5. Learned how to live with a husband AND cognition-impaired F-I-L in tow. This has been the hardest part, and is still Work in Progress.
6. Traveled a decent bit.
7. Learned to deal with a bunch of disappointments and adjustments wrt to how I thought married life together would be versus how it actually is. This is also Work in Progress.
8. Enjoyed the perks of R2I- visit my parents once in a few months, have a maid and never have to worry about dishes and cooking. Have a driver and have not yet started driving.
9. Enjoyed the feeling of double-income.
10. Explored the city, and I must say I like it.
Stuff that fell along the wayside-
1. Have not yet completed my post-doc paper. It is now in crisis stage, with my P.I threatening to demote my authorship if I dont turn it around. I am woefully stuck here and back in the same misery-hole I was when I was struggling with my Ph.D. paper after leaving grad school. I want to fix this right away because it will lead to me being a happier person and put an end to us allocating all my free time (the little of it that is) to the bloody paper and allow us to do more fun stuff that i want to do.
2. Effectively addressing the disappointments in my married life. Not sure how much of it is natural, that everyone goes through? The first year of living together after marriage I had imagined would be more filled with freshness, happiness, excitement and what not. Especially after two years of the US-India LDR. It was not so. We got consumed with routine, daily challenges, unhappiness in adjustments and of course moving in with the F-I-L and learning how to deal with him and his illness. I think we now realise the need to focus on ourselves as much, but I am wary of feeling bitter and shortchanged on the past year. I am guilty of not verbalizing enough. I want to change that now.
3. Health and weight gain - I just need to see photos of myself in skirts to realise the terrible amount of weight I have put on. I want to change this. Starting today.
4. Socializing- We have not made the effort to go and hang out with anyone. I am not sure why- partly being consumed in our own routines, and to some extent in our own unhappiness. The blog has presented the opportunity of several friendships that could be made and nurtured but I have not made the effort or even reciprocated when others did. I want to change this. We desperately need a social life and I desperately need good friends to hang with.
5. Learn driving and fire the driver who I cannot stand.