Poets logo

The bathroom at my first scientific conference

a poem and a reflection

By Lucy Dan (she/her/她)Published 2 years ago 1 min read
The bathroom at my first scientific conference
Photo by Sidekix Media on Unsplash

at my first

scientific conference

I waited


as the line to the women's bathroom snaked outside of the bathroom doors and around the bend; thinking about how embarrassing (!) and rude (!) it might be to walk into a session three minutes into the first presentation and oh why did I drink so much of that free, watered-down coffee?



I've been to this conference for fifteen years and this is the first time there's been a line to the women's bathroom! It's encouraging, isn't it?


I waited two minutes to use the bathroom.

They waited fifteen years for equality and representation.


As we continue to fight for racial and gender equality in academic situations, I want to pause and honour those who have taken this step before me, who have taken the step in a much more difficult context and have transformed it so that those following their footsteps have something to grasp on to.

Thank you to Joy Melody Woods, MA and Shardé M. Davis, PhD for kickstarting the #BlackInTheIvory tag to share stories about racial inequality for Black academics. Thank you to OpenAcademics, Dr. Zoë Ayres for discussing mental health and diversity.

Tweet me if you have more suggestions!

This piece was first published here.

social commentary

About the Creator

Lucy Dan (she/her/她)

Reader insights

Be the first to share your insights about this piece.

How does it work?

Add your insights


There are no comments for this story

Be the first to respond and start the conversation.

Sign in to comment

    Find us on social media

    Miscellaneous links

    • Explore
    • Contact
    • Privacy Policy
    • Terms of Use
    • Support

    © 2023 Creatd, Inc. All Rights Reserved.