I think the reason to why I haven’t really been blogging is because I think my life is now revolved in a constant, stagnant cycle.If I were to blog everyday it’d be:
Sigh… changed media. Stupid cells overgrow themselves over the weekend again. Too much cells. Have to plate the cells for flow cytometry work.
PCR… woohoo! Bands!
ARGGGGHH!! SHIT! Stained stupid cells and acquired results does not telly with previous results
Repeat Wednesday. Emailed supervisor.
Repeat experiment as requested by supervisor
JOY!!! Break time! But went into lab to change cell culture media 😦
Did PCR twice cuz first results look funny.
Fought with a bloody fucker named ONG GHIM HOCK. Screw him… he’s an arsehole.
Why is it Monday already?!
Today I went to Pratheep’s dad’s funeral. It was then only I knew, the smiling, easygoing face is a mask he had to put on everyday in the lab to hide his troubles. I was even talking to him about the stresses of MY work just last week, not knowing the pain HE was going through. Yet, he was supportive and kind to me 😦 Now I feel that my worries are kinda insignificant compared to his.
The boss has decided that it is crucial that we have fortnightly Monday meetings with her ‘cuz everyone of us tries to avoid her *laughs*. This way she can keep track of us and our doings in the lab.
But it’s a pain to rush everything before the meetings, then spend sleepless Sunday nights worrying about the next morning’s presentation.
On top of that… you are shot down by her for doing crappy work AND get still get yelled at for trying to defend the work *sigh*
Its 1920 hours. I am still in the lab with a headache and back ache. I am hungry but the appetite for nourishment has gone. All I want to do now is to fall into bed and curl up with my new book but I don’t feel like driving home. I don’t want to go down that spooky corridor and elevator to clock out.
The lab work took longer than expected which a couple of glitches along the way. My head feels numb… Now I remember why I hated microscopes.
I feel bushed. Being in the Immunology lab for approximately 3.5 to 4 weeks makes a person feels like he/she is more moronic than a moron. If that is that is possible, in the first place. Half the time I do not understand what they are tying to tell me. And the other half? Making huge or stupid mistakes. Whichever happens to me first. The mistakes that I made nowadays have the potential to beats exploding gel solution in the microwave.
Other than that, everyone in the lab in nice. More appropriately put would be, they are afraid to step on each others toes. Me having the problem of talking without thinking makes me feel like a long tailed cat with a room full of rocking chairs. Trying to choose my words before talking is definitely hard on the poor insensitive brain. Almost everytime I feel guilty after saying something.
On top of that, I was dense enough to not realized that my lecturer was yelling. *sigh*
It has been a rather unproductive two weeks in the lab. Nothing exciting, other than that ONE trip to the hospital, has happened. Most of the time was spent on tagging the senior all over the lab, trying to make sense of what he’s doing and talking about, furiously jotting down everything he has said and attempting to put them all in the ugly laboratory journal.
The lab is boring. The classes are a mess. I was told during a class that I was not accepted because I am not a student of the faculty. Thus, my name shall be dropped from the list. Darn it. Now, my plans are all haywired and the need to make new ones are keeping me awake at nights. The one thing that I am grateful for is that the biological alarms in my house no longer wakes me up whether I want to or not. Most of the mornings, when I get up to get ready for lab, I find them dead to the world.
Thank heaven for small favors.
It’s been a pretty long week for me when it finally arrived to the weekends. Thinking I could enjoy myself while trying to cram everything I need to know about flowcytometry into my under-used, still on sabbatical brain is not working out too well. I think it was due to stress and the lack of sleep throughout the week, that I spent most of today sleeping. And I suspect tomorrow will a day consumed by public transportation for something trivial but still needed.
Now, Saturday is almost over, Sunday will be over meaninglessly and Monday will arrive around the corner will a happy grin. And me? It will be back to depression and battered self esteems. Not an entirely fun thing to look forward to.
As part of my master’s programme, it was required that I would have to go to the hospital to collect my samples. Thus, today (or rather yesterday) a senior brought me and Cindee to introduce us to the Matron and the Doctors. According to him, it would make our job of sample collection easier. Although I am not sure how true that statement is. Since it is a field trip of some sort, I naively thought it would be nice to bring along my camera and maybe I could have taken a picture or two of the wards and the hospital.
However when I entered the ward, I regretted my decision. After seeing a patient or two lying on their bed, all having IV bags hanging over their head and some without hair, it was heart breaking. After that, I guess after seeing a patient or two, I’d prefer to ignore them. To not look at them. To not think about their suffering.
“This patient is only 14 years old,” said my senior in a hushed voice, pointing at the patients list as we were waiting for the doctor.
She’s so young. I wonder if she has ever been upset over her fate. Over the fact she is not able to live a normal life. That she has not done everything she wanted to do in life. I know I would have ‘cuz at the age of 14, I would not have thought to do anything useful. Taking for granted that my life will be a long one and I am grateful that I manage to live this long. To top it up, I later found out that our sample for the day was from a 12 years old kid. Hell, I was still playing tali getah and belon acar without a care in the world when I was his age.
The trip, as short as it is, was a solemn one. Seeing so many suffering people in the same room was heart wrenching experience. I think what my senior said was true. That when he enters the wards, he doesn’t want to see anyone. All he wants to do is to pick up the samples and get out. And if you give me a chance, I think I would be happier to not think about from where and from whom my samples came from. Because knowing makes it lab work sadder and more stressful.
“Remember, sterilize your hands before putting them back into the fume box.” *pssff pssf*. ” Hands out, sterilize hands in. Now, in this two falcon tube we have the medium… ” *zone off* ” ….. and so we resuspend the cells with the medium. Don’t use this medium, ok? Use the other one…”
“Erm… why cant we use the other medium again?”
That was how is was from 3 pm onwards on my first day of lab. I don’t zone off intentionally but for some reason my attention span was shorter than it normally is. The droning of how to’s, when to’s and where to’s does not particularly help the problem at hand. Despite that, being able to enter the lab again brings about a bizarre feeling. Exhilaration tinged with curiosity and fear.
But first I would like to say….
*warning: blonde moment*
ohmygodohmygodohmygod!!!! The little gadget which they use to count the cells is soooooo cuuuttteeee… It looks so tradisional but yet so modern… I’d put the picture up but I forgot to bring my camera into the lab. It has red and white buttons, and it makes the “ting” sound of those old, metal typewriter every 100 cells.
Okay, back to normal world. It’s not easy emotionally doing this masters programme. It’s bad enough that I don’t understand what on earth am I suppose to do but to not understand the topic does not make the job any easier. On top of that, there are many things to consider e.g. finacially, forms, student loan, scholarships etc.
Glancing at the clock, it was nearing 11pm. We’re finally done for the day. As I hear the sound of my computer shutting down, I noticed that the guys are starting to pack up too. Slowly with the speed of an old woman, I started to off the machines. The autoclave machine, the centrifuge machine, the PCR machine…
Gosh, I felt drained. Finally after assurance from the boys that the back air-con was off, I switched off the lights. That familiar sense of insecurity hit me again. Worried, I scanned the whole lab again. Making sure everything was switched off. Then locked the door.
Tiredly, the three of us traipsed slowly down the hallway. At least it was not as eerie as it was when I walk this hallway alone at night. As we slowly approch the stairways, I heard voices. At least I think I did.
At the same moment in time, I heard Joey yelled “F***!!” and I thought “Damn…It has to be something bad” and the voices I thought heard flew out of my head.
Peering down the stairs, all I saw was the grill. Where is the opening?! I looked for the padlock instead…the grill was padlocked. ARGGGGGG…!!
Choo Yau yelled something… I have no idea what. Haiz… don’t care. I’m just too tired. Slowing climbing up the stair while pondering my options:
1. I could jump down… it’s the first floor after all
2. Go back into the lab and continue my work
“Steph, why are you wearing those slippers?!”
Huh?? I looked down and saw. I was wearing the lab slippers! How embarrassing. I rush back to the lab to change to MY slippers. Still thinking about my options as I walk back, I suddenly noticed that there was no one in the hallway. Not Joey. Not Choo Yau. Panic starts to build up. Suddenly, I hear voices. Frowning (as I’m sure I hear Joey this time), I creep down the stairs. The grill was open. Party streamers and trumpets were celebrating in my brain.
There was Joey. There was Choo Yau. Loitering in the ground hallway waiting for me. Lolz.
A senior from the Genetic lab was around. So was the guard. Thank God!!
So, we three tired labmates climbed into the car and head on home with the image of our beds in mind.
Ps: I was suppose to blog this yesterday but i was seriously zonked. 😀