Happy New Year, Belatedly

If my time wasn’t spent on the computer while on a winter break from school, that likely meant I was having meaningful time of detachment from my laptop.  The time went by too quickly between quarters so I actually have to pause and think if I did actually step away from my computer.  My mom and sister were in town for an extended period of time, so it’s likely I did.  Hard to say now that we’re approaching the end of the Winter 2018 session.

So the process of the masters thesis has begun.  This is going to take three quarters to complete, not counting the summer quarter when we were told cranking away at the data will continue even though we won’t technically be “enrolled” in anything, except for a class on how to crank away at this data using software, or something like that.  I think I either blocked it out of my mind or zoned out when my professor was talking about it because there honestly is nothing drier than statistics.  I probably shouldn’t say that because I really need to love this stuff if I plan to continue with research.  Fall quarter will end with the presentation and defense.

Let’s not forget the other graduate degree I’m working on simultaneously which will involve an internship this summer with one community research class as a pre-requisite.   I’ve been told this is a bear of a class, so basically the shit will hit the fan in a couple of weeks when it starts.

Spring Break?  What’s that?

It’s difficult to stay focused with the recent school shooting in Florida.  Not just because I worry about the same thing happening here, but it’s a multi-faceted public issue that needs to be addressed.  Mental health, gun control, etc.  However, my focus has always been on obesity, lifestyle, diet, etc.  I need to stop straying away to see what people are saying on Facebook because that fluff doesn’t mean anything as far as creating real policy change.  But even then, as much as I would love to advocate for what is currently grabbing the media as far as morbidity and mortality, it’s not a great time to suddenly go on a tangent, which I have a tendency to do.

However, I did recently attend a lecture on gut health and suddenly wished I had focused more on microbiology.  It is amazing to me that we are each composed of our own unique set of bacteria, determined by our mothers.  Whether we were born naturally or by c-section has a great significance even now because of the type of bacteria we were first exposed to as we entered this world.  And now, there is growing evidence that an individual’s microbiome can be influential with many of the chronic illnesses present today, from diabetes to depression.  I need to find out if I have enough under my belt to go down this path for a PhD.

But first, I really need to finish my two masters and go on a much-needed vacation.  Does that even really happen when there is so much more to investigate and discover?