The crucial moment of unexpected redirection she describes thus:
When I first got pregnant at 28, I was a postdoctoral scientist working in genetic toxicology at MIT. I researched daycare centers and breast pumps, and assured my mentor I’d be back in 12 weeks.
Then I had a baby.
This is a familiar story that the Gruntleds and many other feminists have discovered. The path that we and the Kosas and others have followed balances family and work more than our pre-baby understanding had prepared us for.
I do wonder, though, if there is any good way to combine young motherhood and lab science - genetic toxicology, for example. It seems to me that a biology lab is about the least friendly environment for babies and small children possible. Moms doing this kind of work really have to separate work and family very thoroughly and physically. I know women who are lab scientists, and I know many science-trained mothers, but I know few women who have been able to combine intensive lab science with young motherhood.
I would welcome some good stories of "how I did it."