Saturday, May 9, 2009

Balancing act

Last night was a hot date night for most of my college friends. A few of us diligently gathered to study for a Chemistry final at the library instead. Three women sat huddled in a corner at a crowded restaurant over our Chemistry books while most of our peers were painting the town red.

We talked about our kids, our jobs and why on Earth we ever thought going back to school was a good idea. Above all we understood and respected the sacrifices that we and our families had to make for us to do this. We all prayed that it was worth it in the end.

For the last 15 years I have worked in and around analytical chemistry labs. I have run them, I have managed them, I have even regulated them at certain points. The fact that I have to take a lower division chemistry class as part of my major is sort of funny. I contemplated testing out of it and just moving on with something else, but I figured that this would be an easy 3 units. With this schedule I figured I could use an easy 3 units. As the semester has progressed I have found that my purpose was to calm the fears of others. Specifically a few very stressed soon to be nurses. They can do the work, but they just get themselves all flustered by the terms.

I find that I do little more than explain what they already know in a different way. There is something that gets them stuck and as soon as they get that piece they are dangerous. Last night we shaved off several of the edges and everyone left with a sense of " I can do this." These ladies were working hard and that to me makes taking this class worth it.

I could not help but be amused by the similarities between college and lodge work. I am a long way away from my mentors and siblings. When I go to a function it is a 2 day trek and a sacrifice. I am not screwing around. There are lots of kids who do not seem to take what they have in their backyard as seriously. Driving 15 minutes to college classes is prohibitive for some. Though driving that distance for a movie is no big deal. I suppose that neither set of folks realizes how special it is to have that so readily available. Unitl you realize what a balancing act is later in life. Ode to joy :)

Off to the glorious of physics and chemistry. All hail science :)

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