Tagged with " motherhood"
May 16, 2011 - Family, Life, Parenting    4 Comments

The Untold Story – Part 2: The Living Nightmare

A word of warning: My Apologies, this is a seriously long post. It was a long nightmare 😉

I finished my PhD in Structural Chemistry (2003), with a coveted Lectureship in hand. I even skipped the post-doctoral phase and I actually had a job deadline – to finish writing my thesis in order to start work.

The truth is, I had started my PhD with the full intention of being an Academic (you know, one of those boffins in the Ivory Tower), by the end of it, I was pretty sure that I no longer wanted to be an Academic.

Having said that, I loved Crystallography, the science that brought us knowledge of the double helix DNA structure, of numerous bio-chemical molecules, in our body, and has formed the basis and groundwork for many of the medicines and applications in our daily lives. Crystallography-related Nobel prizes continue to be awarded, the most recent in 2009, not bad for a Science that started more than a century ago with the discovery of X-rays.

And so, when I was offered a job, doing Crystallography, at a time when there were probably 80 applicants for every Academic job going, I took it. I enjoyed doing what I loved, I enjoyed the lecturing, the contact time with the students, the sharing of knowledge. I loved what I did, I truly did, the only problem was, I abhorred the environment (both built and social) I did it in.

It was extremely lop-sided gender wise, I raised the women count by 100%, (not counting the really brave / really mad? man turned woman, who stayed on – Academia is complicated!) when I joined. I was the only non-Caucasian and the youngest by at least 5 years to all my colleagues, the average colleague was a 45-year old male Caucasian, BUT these were non-issues when I started.

The issues really started I suppose mid-2005. Read more »

On Raising Girls

…in conjunction with International Women’s Day Centenary

As Georgia grows up, I often find myself contemplating the messages that I send to her through my actions, the things I say, the way I am and more importantly, the choices I make or have made.

And as we celebrate the centenary of the International Women’s Day (on the 8th March 2011), it seems just the right time to articulate my thoughts. In an open letter to a now 5-year old Georgia, I want her to know …
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A Successful Life vs. A Successful Parent?

In the Sunday Times newspaper a week ago today,  (OK in all honesty, I probably read it in the middle of the week) at the end of the Money section was an interview with Hilary Devey who was taking over from James  Caan as the next Dragon on Dragon’s Den. (Dragon’s Den is a TV programme in which potential start-ups are given the opportunity to pitch their business/business ideas to already established (read Rich!) entrepreneurs)

Multi-millionaire Hilary Devey made her fortune with a pallet distribution business that she started in 1996. In typical rags to riches fashion, she had her fair share of extreme poverty moments, living above a fish and chip shop (cheaper rent) and even describes having a Christmas dinner out of a tin. The business/entrepreneurial and over-achiever side of me admires and is rather jealous of the tenacity, hard work and steely resolve Devey must have had in order to be so successful.

However, in the interview, there is a telling sign, her answer to the question ‘How much money do you have in your wallet?’ is ‘ My purse is often empty because it’s raided by my son….’ Read more »