We're a little crazy, about science!

Day 361: Accidental history

Impostor syndrome
Art by: xkcd

Ever wake up one morning and realize you’re exactly where you wanted to be. That you’re in a place you never even dared to dream you could reach because, well it was silly to think you could accomplish something like that. Dreams that big weren’t meant for people like you, so you didn’t even bother to think you could get there. Yet… here we are.

When I started this blog… back in 2014, wow time flies. I started it as a way to meet people who needed a prosthetic. However, I also did it to write about the sciences. There are so many cool and interesting things out there, I loved reaching into the latest publications and pulling out something that I thought was fascinating, funny, scary, or just all around interesting.

It never occurred to me that I could be the one doing some of the research that I thought was so cool. Neuroscience has always been a fascination of mine. That’s partly why I wrote about things that involved neuroscience topics early on, why I created my 54 post know your spinal cord series, and why I’m currently doing neuroscience research.

Usually I’m too busy looking forward to take a second and look back. However, I’ve been trying to be more mindful about the journey I’ve made and how I’ve arrived at where I am at. Part of that included looking back on some of the first posts I wrote. See, I stepped away from the blog for a little bit (like 2 years or so), but I’ve been back for the past year and it feels good to document my journey again.

Which brings me back to the title of today’s post. I’ve had this nagging feeling that I’ve known the work of my Co-PI for sometime. I just couldn’t remember where I remembered reading about it. So I searched my blog for his name and I found it. Back in July 30, 2015 (five whole years ago almost exactly) I wrote this post on some really cool spinal cord stimulation research. I remembered being really excited by it, which is why I chose it for the days topic.

My Co-PI came from Edgerton labs (among other places) and thanks to my blog I remembered why I knew the name and the research. Up until recently it never occurred to me that I could even get into this sort of field and now I’m working with someone who’s work I found inspiring.

I guess the point of today’s post is this. We don’t have a potential meter attached to us somewhere. No one, can look at you and tell you what you can do in life, not even yourself. In some ways that’s scary, if I knew what I can and cannot accomplish, I would have very real expectations for myself. The unknown is inherently scary, we don’t want to fail, but we also don’t want to limit ourselves because we’re afraid to fail.

It took a quick search of my blog to remind me that sometimes we underestimate ourselves. Sometimes it’s okay to dream bigger than we think we can reach. I’ve been very lucky, I’ve met the right people at the right times and they helped me. All this while feeling like I had no control over anything that happened, like I was a pinball being bounced around with no way to stop it. Somehow despite all of that, I ended up exactly where I wanted to be.

Sometimes it doesn’t seem possible. Yet I look around and I’m here. How does that even work?


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