If you ask me which was the most beautiful thing that happened to me during my PhD, I will most definitely reply: Becoming a father! J Last year in November I became father of little (but also big 😜) Benjamin Antonio.
In some ways, it felt like starting a second PhD: you don’t know where to start, then you are learning a lot of things and if you figure out something new you're very proud of your work. I was getting a real crash course in patience (will he ever close his eyes and sleep???), team work ("hes hungry!""no, tired!"), finding solutions under pressure (how to make him stop screaming) and generally staying positive while being stressed overwhelmed, tired and exhausted. If you ask me, there are a lot of good skills for the CV here 😀
Being a young parent is definitely challenging and time consuming, and therefore not always easy to combine with PhDing. Some people told me, my timing for having a baby was not so good, but I am glad that right now I can still work flexible hours and that I was supported by my programme. This way I was able to spend time with my baby but also keep on pushing forward my PhD. Plus, having a child around and playing with him also helped me a lot with getting my mind off my Phd challenges and prevented some over thinking.
Most importantly the support that I get from my family is the best motivation to finish my PhD in time.