My life, as anyone who has read my blogs for the last six months knows, took a major turn on February 25th, 2012 because of one loose rock.
My friend’s deadly fall in the Grand Canyon, spiraled me into an emotional, reflective time where I was searching for meaning in so many new places. God, afterlife, love, the wonders of the natural world, and yoga were all bigger players in my life than they ever had been before.
I went to Africa with my mom this July and wrote a story about the trip, my relationship with her, and growing up with a mom who was the first woman at her company and had to write the maternity rules. My perspective, as the first baby born to a pilot at Flying Tigers, was a huge hit with the editor of an International Women Aviation’s magazine and I’m getting published! This was a huge confidence boost-in two hours, only writing about my own emotions and perspectives, I’d been able to secure a spot in a magazine. I need to take my ability to communicate meaningfully through writing seriously. (I tend to be insecure, so I’m sorry if that comes off as arrogant to people who don’t know me.)
After a lot of contemplation of the softer side of life, I’m back to being focused on math education and wondering how to bring my new experiences to my dissertation planning. I don’t expect my dissertation to be a 300 page discussion of my emotions about teaching math, but I can’t deny that my ability to reflect upon how I feel and express that honestly needs to be a part of what makes my dissertation meaningful. My dissertation can’t just be statistics about teaching mathematics, it has to be stories about teaching mathematics with data woven into it. But what!?!