The Transition Back to Work



I know that it’s been a while since I’ve posted a blog. After almost a year and a half of being a stay-at-home mom, I decided to go back to work. Since my son is in school for 5 hours a day 5 days per week, I figured it would be a great time to return to the lab. I have a Master of Science degree in Analytical Chemistry, so my experience is primarily in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries. I must say that so far, it has been an interesting experience.   Every day is unpredictable. You don’t know what projects may come up. Of course, everything has a tight deadline, but most places that I’ve worked revolve around them.

My commute is reasonable and typical…about 45 minutes to an hour when you factor in traffic. My co-workers are friendly, although many of them are very stressed. There are times that you are required to stay past 5:00 pm or work on the weekends. Whatever the case, I refuse to be stressed out. Things are starting to turn around for the better. Oh, the power of prayer! The company recently treated us to lunch from Panera Bread, one of my favorite places. Three or four days out of the week, I leave on time. If you plan your workday properly and organize your time, you don’t need to work late. However, as I mentioned before, this job can be very unpredictable at times; things will just pop up out of nowhere.

One thing that I’ve learned this past week is not to second-guess myself. When you’re given wrong information, it affects your results. Fortunately for me, for my current project, I double-checked the method, and my results were ALWAYS correct. Just think if I had not brought it to their attention and repeated that entire experiment? It would have been in vain and a waste of time! I know that I’ve been out of the lab for a while, but I always try to produce high-quality work.

Do I regret going back to work? Not at all! I’m home to read to my son every night, and I see him before I leave in the mornings. I truly believe that this job is preparation for the next opportunity. (This position is a short-term contract, and the company will be relocating to Tennessee.) Also, I love having extra money. I like to pamper myself and buy necessities for the house. As wives, I’m sure that we all love getting facials, manicures, and pedicures. Maybe even a different hairstyle will sometimes make a difference.

Regardless of my next work project, I am prepared for anything that may happen. The key for my success will be organization, trusting my instincts, and attention to detail. Not only do you need to check your own results and data, but you also need to check to make sure that you are receiving accurate information from others working on the same project.

When A Lifelong Friendship Ends

There are many reasons that friendships end. It’s often painful when you lose a lifelong friend. You’ve known them since grade school, or you grew up in the same neighborhood.  You think that with everything that you been through that your friendship wouldn’t end over someone of the opposite sex.

Here’s the scenario:  Your best friend has been dating the same person for many years.  During that time, you become friends with her as well.  Your best friend dumps his current girlfriend for what he thinks is a better catch.  Then, he deserts you and everyone else in his circle for her.  During this time, his ex feels betrayed and confides in you.  He hears about it and becomes jealous, even though there’s nothing sexual involved. All you’re doing is listening and advising.  As time passes, this new love of his life betrays him by marrying another guy right under his nose.  The ultimate betrayal, right?

He tries to apologize to his ex, you, his family, and everyone else that he’s hurt in the process.  He drops the bomb….he gives you an ultimatum…..him or his ex. You can only be friends with one of them.  Very immature indeed.  You should not be forced to choose sides.

You don’t want to end a lifelong friendship over something petty as this, but sometimes it has to be that way. When you think about your friendship over the years, there were times that he stole from you.  You forgave him every time.  He took advantage of you time and time again, and you forgave him.  When do you reach your breaking point?  Are you sick and tired of being sick and tired?  You need to get toxic people out of your life.  Here are some signs that it’s time to keep it moving.

1. They damage your self-esteem.  Just like in any relationship, you wouldn’t want to be around a verbally or mentally abusive person.  If this person “stabs you in the back” , he was not a real friend from the start. A true friend is always brutally honest, even if it hurts a little sometimes.

2. They encourage negative behaviors.  If you  find yourself engaged in negative behaviors (i.e. stealing, drugs, violence) now because of this “friend”, it’s time to move on.

3. You only see them when they want something. You have those friends that only come around or call you when they need money or a favor.  There has to be a point where enough is enough.  Do not let them continue abusing your friendship.

4. You’ve grown and they haven’t matured.  I’ve experienced this a lot over recent years.  I have grown apart from some of my friends because of either petty differences or I’ve outgrown them.  They still act like high school kids. I’m an elitist….I like being in the company of intelligent people.

5. You don’t trust them.  Obviously, if you don’t have the trust factor, there isn’t a friendship.

Every once in a while, you need to do an inventory.  Some of us manage to get away from hurtful people only to go back to them because they are familiar.  Think about your current situation.  Do you have an awesome circle of friends?  Or are they toxic?  It’s not the quantity of friends, but the quality.  I’d rather have 5 great friends than 20 fake friends.  Detox if you need to.  You’ll feel better.