Thursday, October 21, 2010

Due date superstition

Al recently asked me when my due date is. Thus far, I've managed to avoid having one. Sure, I know more or less when Bun Bun will be cut out of my ute, should we reach that point. It's not like I can avoid thinking about it. And even if I could resist, there's the fact that when we first started trying to get pregnant we did it in August so it would work out optimally with my teaching schedule. (HA!) So I know it's MAY. But my RE didn't give me a due date and I haven't calculated it. I don't want to know. Partly it's that I'm so scared of having it burned forever into my brain as the day my baby was supposed to begin its life and, you know, didn't. I've watched that day (in some cases, those days!) pass for so many of you and it's heartbreaking to see from a distance; I can't imagine experiencing it. Logically, I know that hiding from the date won't change a thing. And yet it's oddly comforting to not know exactly. I presume my OB will give me one if there's a thriving fetus in there. By then, I'll be almost to the Much Safer Zone, and I might be ready to hear it.

1. Votes on the doppler question were more or less split, so I'm going with no. There's no logical reason, and it's not like the Pro Doppler Contingent was not convincing, but I guess until I get a strong sense that it's the right choice for me, inaction is where it's at!
2. I met with my plagiarist today. She explained that she'd submitted the wrong version of the assignment. The version I got was a DRAFT, see, with some filler that she later replaced! But of course she'd never cut and paste material from the web into a REAL paper! So I was like send me the new version and I'll decide what to do next, given that I have no way of knowing whether you're telling the truth. So she did, and LO! Not only was it clear in the "new" version that she'd simply rephrased the plagiarized material, but some of the plagiarized material was still there. And, better still, there was NEW plagiarized material! I know this shit is not all that thrilling to most of you, but it totally boggles my mind, and is way more entertaining than the usual grading and whatnot that comprises the teaching part of my life. Stay tuned for the next chapter!


  1. I think that's sensible, bunny.

    But your plagiarist - I boggle too. I really, really boggle. BOG-GLE! What happens now? Execution at dawn? The mean part of me says she should be docked 50% of the grade, but if she were sitting in front of me, I would probably cave in, and just subject her to my severe disappointment.

  2. I totally get the due date phobia. I would avoid the math like the plague. Let the OB show off his or her math skills at your visit in 11 days. (Is that it, woman? 11 days until the Much Safer Zone! Me thinks we'll need a wee celebration for that milestone!)

    I support your no doppler choice. Of course, I would have supported a doppler choice too. Call me the support system. I support. That's what I do.

    And, OMG, that little wench of a plagiarist! What planet does she live on? Seriously, the last plagiarist I caught had a similar attitude. It makes me wonder whether students understand the concept of writing papers. I think they need to be taught more explicitly about the process of reading, digesting, and writing as three separate steps. When you become chair of your department, I know that you'll work on that in first and second year courses ;)

    Hope the headache and nausea are not too intense today.

    Be well, lovely.

  3. I agree with your thinking on the due date.

    And I can't believe that stupid chick!

  4. My RE gave us an EDD right out of the gate, along with a fancy congratulatory memento card with our first u/s picture in it. It felt a bit much and so premature to me at the time, and yes, the date was/is firmly etched in my heart. I had never calculated a due date based on my protocol/transfer, so I just remember feeling utterly shocked that the due date was still inside this year. I am no good at math, so I just avoided it.

    I failed to weigh in on the doppler debate, mostly because I have one, but don't use it any longer. I keep saying I'm going to mail the effer back, but I've yet to do it. I wasn't obsessive or hung up over it when I did use it daily... And in hindsight, I think the comfort it granted me was imaginary. Never once did I think of how I'd freak out if I couldn't find the HB...and that feels a little reckless if I really think hard about it.

    And holy shit, I just want to kick your cheatin' girl right in the nuts. I mean, does she think you're stupid? You were kind enough to grant her a little grace in this, and she still turns in fake work? Come on, kid.

  5. It's amazing that she just bold faced lied. Wouldn't it be better to own up?

  6. My mother-in-law is a professor at a highly ranked university and she had the same thing happen -- got a draft that had obvious plagiarism, student resubmitted, and there was some left in, and new added. It's crazy what students think they can get away with...

  7. Well, I didn't weigh in on the original debate, but I think that I am definitely anti-doppler. For myself, at least. Assuming that time ever comes. I just think that it would lend itself to obsessive behavior on my part AND I think I'd totally freak out if I, in my untrained ignorance, couldn't find a HB at some point...

    I can totally understand the due date thing. It seems like it's good enough to know that it's MAY and just keep moving along. Although I am SURE that you do have a thriving fetus in there, the fear is surely only normal!!!

  8. Eh, due dates are stupid. Mine was accurate down to the minute, recorded in some embryologist's lab notebook, and still I had an 8-lb baby almost 2 weeks early. Bun Bun will come when she or he is perfectly ready. Just clear your calendar in May. (Which happens to be my birth month, making it AWESOME.)

    And, oh, cheating girl. Knee her in the groin, man. That's some brazen shit.

  9. i'm the exact same way about the due date. my sister and BIL asked me what it was, and i just "some time around end may/early june", to which annoying BIL was like "how do you NOT KNOW THE DATE"? my RE never told me either.

    that's a good way to wiggle out of the "i didn't mean to plagiarize" situation from your student. too bad she didn't follow throw by not plagiarizing AT ALL. you gave her a chance (very nice of you btw) and she blew it!! perhaps an F for her?? no pity here from the girl who is as sick as a dog right now :o(

  10. I wouldn't want to know the date, either, not until I were in a "sort of safe zone". Although I'd probably sort of automatically calculate the boundaries anyway...
    As for the plagiarist, really? That is so incredible. And insulting. Ugh.

  11. I'd have to think that student honestly doesn't understand the basic professional principle of only claiming credit for one's own work. I guess lowering the boom on her is the only thing that is going to get her attention.

    I hear you about the due date. Mine falls on a holiday (Feb 14th), and I had a flash of fear that a pregnancy loss would also ruin Valentine's Day. There's PLENTY of time to do the necessary planning. You don't need a due date right now.

  12. My dear, I hope the day comes when you can put your worry aside. I understand.

    How are you going to complete your astrological chart without a date???

  13. I understand about the due date thing, unfortunately doctors and the fertile people won't let you live in the "ignorance is bliss" place much longer. As for your student at first I thought "wow what a clever out" but then to summit a paper with more plagerism makes me think "this girl ain't so bright" UGH there are always crappy parts to every job.

  14. I love this plagiarist story line! But it must be annoying to deal with, no? I am so glad 8 year old brains aren't cognitively developed enough to to pull crap like that...

  15. Do you have an honor committee? She's kinda crossed the line for me between just "omg I have this paper and I'm unprepared" to "i think I'm more clever than everyone" and that would piss me off. Take her down. Where I went to college, that could get you kicked out for 2 consecutive semesters.

    On due date -- at my first OB appt, she wrote down all key dates -- testing windows, when to stop flying, due date. It seemed so risky and crazy and scared the shit out of me. THe fear is totally natural and will ease.

  16. I think date evasion is okay for now. But what I'm hoping is that as you get closer to the safety zone, that you can hear it and know that - while nothing in life is ever 100% certain - the chances are squarely on your side. (They already are but, still, I do understand not wanting to take that for granted).

    As for the plagiarist, I know. It boggles my mind, too. For f's sake. You gave her MORE than a second opportunity. You basically gave her a surefire exit from the gallows. And she screwed it up.

    I swear to you, sometimes I'm less offended by the fact that students plagiarize than by the sheer stupidity of the way they do it. (Okay, not really...but for goodness sakes...can't they show some originality?)

  17. I'm steering clear of the whole doppler thing but I think I'm with you on keeping the due date murky. I mean, who actually delivers on their due date anyway? It's kind of a made-up number, and the only thing it really does is give you some kind of fixed end point to hang on to--which, as you point out, can be terribly traumatic under the wrong circumstances (or just frustrating, as in the case of my SIL who went well past her due date last month and was READY for that baby to come).

    And regarding the plagiarist--I think the last time you posted about her I recommended bringing the hammer down. Can you fail her for the entire course? Get her on academic probation? I mean, this shit is ridiculous, and I guarantee if she's this brazen in your class she's doing it in all her other classes too.

  18. Hey Bunny, I'm pretty sure that my birthday is your omg-that-baby's-gotta-be-evicted-now day and so I think you should hold it in til then. Us gemini babies are speshal.

    As for your student I can't believe the dumb-osity of her. So incredibly dumb-a-licious. I say boot her out of the course with a fail.

    (I would get the doppler btw, I love hearing heartbeats.)

  19. NEW plagiarized material? Really, chicklet?? You know Bunny's on to you, and so *this* is what you come out with? Unbelievable.

    I understand your superstition (see Pumpkin, Uncarved); you do whatever feels right. Got it? Happy weekend to you, fuzzy one.

  20. Re Due Dates. My last due date was 1/11/11. We loved the date and told everyone. Then miscarried at 11 weeks. It's not like i can miss that date and i have no idea how I'm going to survive that date. We just FET yesterday and my husband is already figuring out the due date and this time I would like to not know until well after the first trimester testing.

    IF it even works this time.

    Re Plagerists, my sister in law is a high school english teacher and I'm always entertained with the stories of girls who think they can get away with that. Some repeatedly. Good luck with that!

  21. Well I think that plagerist is plain stooopid. You gave her an opportunity to get out of this mess and instead of doing so she insulted your intelligence even further. Grrrr. I'm not in your profession but even I can understand how frustrating you must find this scenario.

    Totally understand the due date angst. I think if it were me I would probably have caved by now and googled my way towards discovering my due date. But I certainly wouldnt be telling other people when it is.

    You make the rules bunny and you get to decide what feels right for you at your own pace, ok?

  22. Wow...that plagiarist of yours is a special kind of dense. I find this story really funny.

  23. I totally get the due date superstition ~ I wouldn't look it up until we saw the heartbeat, though hubs had no problem

    With my first pregnancy with the RE, they gave me a due date right after the my third beta when everything looked so beautiful. And yes, that date was firmly etched in my brain and hurt like hell to watch the day pass.

    With the ectopic pregnancy, I was never given a EDD, nor did I ever look it up. I know it was a December baby and I wonder how different it will feel to watch December come and go since I'm not dreading a particular date. Will I now be hurt during the whole month? Hopefully I'll still be pregnant which will make the whole thing different and I won't be able to compare the two situations anyways...

    And wow, your plagiarist is a total idiot!!! You were more than fair to give her a second chance and she pissed all over it!! Idiot!!