The secret to being an academic parent: More coffee
This story has been shared by Professor Snarky (@ProfSnarky ), a prominent personality on academic Twitter.
I have a Spouse and two “Spawn.”
My spouse is not in academia and likes to poke fun at my travails. One Spawn is in the eye-rolling phase, and the other in the talkative phase. Thankfully none of them is on Twitter.
Here’s a typical day in the “Snarky” household: Wake up, get coffee, send Spawn off to school, go to the office, get coffee, answer emails, get coffee, prep a class, answer emails, teach class, hold office hours, get coffee, teach class, go to a committee meeting, get coffee, answer emails, prep a class, go home to play with and feed Spawn, put Spawn to bed, prep a class, answer emails, check Twitter (maybe get another coffee).
And also somehow find time to do research, publish, read, go to conferences, peer-review articles -- in other words, all those things we went into academia to do!
The bottom-line line is that being a parent in academia can be difficult. On the one hand, those lucky enough to be on the tenure track usually have health insurance, parental leave, and a somewhat flexible schedule as long as one is willing to work nights and on vacation. On the other, I don’t think academics are ever totally “at home.” The work is always with you in some form or another.