Skookumchick wants me to talk about renewal for the March Scientiae. I will try, though I’m sure this would be much easier for me if I had already undergone some form of said renewal.
What do I find compelling about the work I do? What do I hope for?
I would say I hope for a day when I have no reason to continue writing this blog. I’m not expecting that to happen anytime soon, however. So, instead I will hope for the strength to continue writing. You can’t believe how enervating it is sometimes to think about gender and science on a sustained basis. I think I said on this blog somewhere before, it’s not like when I was little I said to myself “gee, I hope when I grow up I will get to spend large amounts of time thinking about how crappy things are for women in science and engineering!”
And yet…I still find it compelling to do this work, because there is so much that needs attending to, and because many of you write to me and tell me that it makes some sort of difference that I produce this blog. Progress is still intolerably slow, and yet having this conversation is good for all of us, isn’t it? Blogging lets me say out loud all the things that have been making me crazy for years about Science and Engineering Land. Here’s a modest hope for 2008: that the number of cranky commenters who think I ought to try being nice and sweet if I want anybody to listen to me will be just slightly fewer than in 2007.
What will get me through this year?
More time spent gardening. It’s good for me to spend time with plants and dirt. I need to do more of it. It’s a good antidote for the despair I sometimes feel about the crappy situation of just about everything. Global warming depresses me, creationist knuckleheads depress me, institutionalized gender inequity depresses me, not being able to work depresses me…some days it just all seems overwhelming. Gardening is good for taking your mind off the crap, and the rewards are both immediate and on-going.
Geez, this has been a difficult blog entry. Blogging in general has been difficult for me since I returned to it after all the time spent with mom. The last few months took more out of me than I realized at first. So, I’m hoping for just a general renewal of spirit and ability to focus, and as spring approaches I think that will help. Yesterday I saw that daffodils are starting to poke through in the garden bed by the front porch. That made me inordinately happy. (Even if they are probably coming up earlier than usual due to the ridiculously warm winter we’ve had…which is probably due to global warming…sigh.) But just for today, I won’t think about that. I’ll think about the promise of daffodils, and the women and men working for change in science and engineering, and the wonderful community of women science bloggers that Scientiae helps nourish. Happy birthday, Scientiae! And thanks, Skookumchick, for giving Scientiae to all of us.