I have been a part of this lab since my Freshman year. I like to call myself a “veteran” of the lab – I’ve been through the hardships and the successes of this lab. I have watched this lab grow to become the incubator of aspiring passionate scientists that it is today. It has been more than just “normal” science.
But one thing I have definitely learned is the fact that expectations are sometimes a hindrance to success. When I got back from New York City, I knew that I would need to get my grind on. It was my last undergraduate summer which meant that this was the time for my Honors Thesis. But even this was too much to expect. One of the most beautiful trademarks of scientific research is that you are literally at the border between what is known and what is not. Which means that to some extent, you can’t really set any expectations. You don’t know what you will find out, which means that there’s not much that you can plan. This lack of control of the future is something that is anxiety-inducing. The uncertain future is frustrating. But setting my expectations to no expectations is a baseline that I will have to get used to. Questions will incur, screams of joy will reverberate, along with the occasional (or frequent) exasperated sighs. But it’s all a part of the journey to expect the unexpected.