I'm putting this film up here as my boss in Melbourne Uni is accepting money for traumatic brain injury research work - click on the link below to see it. It means loads to me that Peter described my situation in his speech!
So what is it I miss about research in general?
I used to love working as a team, often from different directions, looking to answer questions in science. What I got a particular thrill out of was looking at the brain.
To me, the brain is the most fascinating thing in the world. It makes us who we are, how we think, how we feel our emotions, solve problems, survive.
I used to love thinking about how to test a theory and designing an experiment to test it. An experiment in research, a good one anyway, would produce a simple result, yes or no, black or white. Then, you could use that new information to think further...
It wasn't until I lost research that I realised how damn important it was to me. That drive to find out more and more, used to keep me staying late at night in the lab to answer more and more questions.
I remember in 2006, when Paul and I had booked tickets to fly to India for a month. I'd set myself that as a deadline to produce some data for our Japanese company. I'd run out of time, but was determined to get it done before we go. So I took my Excel sheets home and calmly - but frantically - did what I needed to do in terms of writing equations for the data and producing more and more columns. I did it, sent it to the right people and got on that bloody plane. Feeling satisfied that I deserved the time with a ruckie hoiked on my back!
I would so love to have that now. A purpose, a drive, a feeling of intrigue to find something out...