Complicit

Complicit: involved with others in an illegal activity or wrongdoing. (Google.com)

Am I complicit for not speaking out against wrong? Good question.

Daily, I want to scream out, “What is wrong with you people?”

Who are the “you people?” Those who support president #45. Those who see nothing wrong with sexual predation, pedophilia, as long as their party or agenda moves forward. Those who espouse their religious values and morals yet turn their back on the golden rule, their own religious values for personal gain, for love of political party instead of their god or their country or their spouses, their children, their morals.

I was raised Christian in a specific church. I converted to another Christian sect. I no longer belong to any cult that espouses that their sect is the “real” one favored by god. Instead the spirituality of nature and humans fill me with awe, peace, and passion. Christians who tell me they support this politician or that one, disregarding their misdeeds, their disregard to the ten commandments or the golden rule, well they aren’t really Christian but instead are swayed by the greed of power or money or both.

Other religious beliefs-I feel the same. If they ignore their religious teachings for their personal gain of power or money or both, well they are probably liars like their Christian counterparts.

Those who have no religious following at least have one honest characteristic going for them; however, that doesn’t mean they are free from greed. Nope. Greed-for anything is unacceptable. And that is what I see as what is wrong with our world, particularly in USA at this time. Sad.

Oops, I guess I am greedy for honesty, trustworthy politicians and leaders, for truth, and for decency. Hmm. . .now that is a conundrum. . .sadly.

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Completion is Imminent

I defended my dissertation this past week successfully. My committee only asked for me to clean up the typos, a few edits for clarification or correction of format. I am the one who wants to add a table or two. Wow. That means I did a good job. I am still thinking about that.

Why do I have to think about that? Why can’t I accept that, yes, I did a good job, at least content wise and overall writing. But I see 50 typos in 50 pages and wonder what else did I miss.

Yes, there is a syndrome this relates to: Impostor Syndrome. I have suffered from this for a long time; partly because I don’t always feel that I fit in wherever I am; I am not a “real” teacher because I didn’t  dream of being a teacher all of my life; yet, I worked very hard, spend time and money to improve my own understanding of pedagogy and content; to help my students, to be able to teach the more effective way science should be taught. But I didn’t set in the teacher’s lounge discussing sponsoring prom and looking at all of the cool prom catalogs like some teachers do; I didn’t volunteer to learn and then do the books for sporting events (although I did coach-two sports, boys & girls, so is that really 4 sports?); I did class sponsor, and club sponsor, and tutored and was at school later in the evenings after sports practice to help students, and you may have an image of me. I also had no children of my own, so school was my life, both as a teacher and as a student.

These past few years working on my doctorate, I am a non-traditional student. I have a good retirement and could live off it for a long time; I do not need to work. But I want to; I do not think I am done, I can continue to contribute but I digress. I don’t hang out with the students 20-30 years younger than I; I am not trying to score networking points, I am just me. I have not been actively involved in many graduate student activities-I have no desire to go out with half a dozen grad students who sit at a table far away from the band so as to not be disturbed by the noise for conversations and then have them texting each other at the table as well as friends not present. What? Nope not me cup of tea.

I am married. I have friends, professionally. I have connections. I know who I am and what I want to accomplish with this degree and the next 8-10 years or so of employment before I really consider retirement. Does this make me an impostor?

Proud of my accomplishments. Yes, I am. Sometimes though it has been very lonely. Many weekends spent alone. Many hours of alone time working long hours and then saying enough. But then that last 24 hours before a deadline working frantically it seems even though I have been working mentally all along, writing in my mind, writing on the computer and now finally polishing. Yes, perhaps I should have not taken that time off and instead  I should have stayed at the computer working.

My adviser called me a scholar. I hope so but if so why do I not live and breathe this 24/7? Balance? Yes, sometimes. More often than not, talking myself into believing I can do this. Then realizing I can and feeling badly for being arrogant and/or questioning of my abilities.

We women do this to ourselves but why? That is the question and while I have read many, many things about this, I we still do this to ourselves. Even if intellectually I know that I am just as capable as another person, male or female. But under stress or times of uncertainty, it is easy to slip back into bad habits and society’s expectations. Every day feeling stronger but that is the light at the end of the tunnel shining on me and I can see completion soon.

Silly girl, no silly woman, no silly person.

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Long Few Months

I was on a good monthly even bi-weekly posting streak but then this semester happened. I finished a draft of my dissertation that was accepted by my committee and I defend in less than two weeks. However, the time writing and not writing has taken its toll on my body-physically and mentally and I crashed about two days ago. Slept for almost 24 hours in the last 48, but not continuously. Breathe deeply, release, repeat.

First, the political scene is just too much: two much ineptitude, too much disgust, too much attack on everyone but the very, very rich. I have had to delete so many “news” groups and stick with traditional mainstream news and even then selectively.

Second, my gosh the climate and weather! Friends affected by one of the many hurricanes and let’s just say Puerto Rico deserves so much more. I have donated what I can since my income has been severely restricted this fall. Puerto Rico was my last straw of any hope that the political entities would do any good.

Third, Vegas shooting happened. Former student, family, all safe but barely. I do not like substituting profanity for strong English words, but WTF is going on with governments that they cannot see what is better for humans????

When it is all done and said, my sacrifices to obtain my doctorate are nothing compared to the natural and unnatural disasters. I have access to monies if I have to and I finally had to, even though I signed a contract for a salary this semester 5-6 weeks ago (depends on whether counting business days or 7-day weeks), as nothing has arrived in. And even that has taken a strange turn as instead of direct deposit a checked is mailed to my home address, not my student address. And transferring monies to my student account takes forever. But I have monies so I cannot complain. I even paid one oh my credit card accounts (I only have two) extra so I am using that credit to live off this month. I am not good at using a credit card to purchase food. . .but I do.

So many changes in “normal” operating routine because I didn’t finish my degree this summer. As I said it could be worse. . .and my complaining is just nothing compared to those who really have hardships in life.

The longing to be home with my family though wears me down into a darkness that only music and exercise can pull me back out. So darn it getting healthier!

Long two months since my last post, but more than surviving! Excelling. . . and meeting goals of a life-time dream.

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Idiocracy: not just a movie

I choose to believe that there are people in our current regime that will stop the president’s bullying, especially of Kim jong Un. But not seeing it.

Why won’t someone stop this insane, narcissistic’s idiot behavior? As a citizen, I wish I could invoke a citizen’s arrest for his stupidity and ignorance of compassion, diplomacy, and how to interact with others.

I have resisted. I have been patient. I have read the Constitution and Bill of Rights more times in the last six months than any other time in my life. But I do not see anywhere how I can take any (more than voting and speaking up and out) action to remove him and his regime from his debacle of “leadership.”

I drew a red line a long time ago with this person but without money to buy him off, I have little power to stop this madness. Dr. Strangelove* or how I learned to love the bomb keeps replaying in my head this day.

*Thank you Debbie Mack for posting this on youtube.

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Mathematics: Manmade tool for counting

Mathematics. Why do we talk about mathematics with a negative tone, negative voice, negative attitude? All of mathematics-all genres, all forms are constructed from humans’ observations of our natural world. Even algebra with its unknowns and letters for numbers is really an accounting system of those unknowns. Even more surprising is that I am writing about mathematics so calmly. I know several of my mathematics teachers from my middle and high school days who would be more than a little surprised and maybe one or two who would be downright flabbergasted!

On the other hand, I use mathematics as a tool to keep track of my earnings, savings, what I owe in taxes, how I pay for my food, housing, clothing, etc. I use mathematics for observations, data collection and verification, simple counting, and keeping track of stuff.

Mathematics is man-made. It is a set of rules for manipulating the number of things we have, had, or want. And yet, people post this “impossible” number problems or number patterns on social media, particular FB, and ask for the correct answer or how is this answer possible or to somehow mock the ability to see and apply patterns of counting.

Even algebra is being discussed as unnecessary because who really used algebra in the real world? If I had all of the answers to everything, then I wouldn’t need algebra. But algebra helps me predict my future earnings or holdings; algebra helps me see possibilities; algebra helps to clear my brain; algebra helps me to reason and think critically. Some people do cross word puzzles or Sudoku or word searches or . .  any number of brain-busting activities.

As a geophysicist friend said to me more than once, numbers are our friends. Learn from them. Use them just as you would your pencil, your car, your microwave. Numbers are tools to help our lives. . .figure out stuff. Embrace them.

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Reflections on birth days

A long time ago, my first husband offered me adventure, carefree living, and a partner. Today is his birth anniversary. I am old enough now to think back and see that this relationship was never going to succeed but that my upbringings required me to marry the man I was making love to sexually. Not a good reason to marry.

However, I learned to take risks although I was the stable one, the responsible one, I took a risk on a different lifestyle and found that it was not too my liking. Nope. Didn’t like altering my mental state with excessive drugs, including alcohol.

I cried the entire evening after our wedding in a park. My maid of honor asked if I was pregnant. No. Just realized it was a mistake to marry. Should have just lived together until we both woke up from our dream of forever.

Alas, I should be sad? Nope. Instead I learned, I loved, and I knew what I didn’t want for my life. And the journey has been worth leaving this man behind.

I should thank him for what he gave me but we have lost contact over the many years; the bitterness of betrayal left a long time ago. The peace of learning and moving on have filled my soul and for that I am grateful.

Thank you AMB for being a part of my journey. I hope peace finds you well and content; happy and reflective, at peace.

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Aha relief from the pain!

Have been in having a sharp pain in my back, between the shoulder blades. Discovered the cause, removed the knife. Feel so much better.

Now I can move on.

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