Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Random Thoughts about Math

I had a very odd thought today. It was a totally off the wall thought that I want to share here in case someone out there knows what the heck I am talking about. This odd thought concerned math. You know, Math. The school subject that a lot of us absolutely hated and couldn't wait to be rid of. (except we know now as adults that we are never actually rid of it, it follows us forever)

In an effort to get my mind off of all of the stress in my life, I sat down this morning to read the new Elin Hilderbrand novel, "The Island". In the book, there is a small part where one character was talking about how her son was at one point failing Trigonometry. She sent her husband to deal with the child's teacher at the parent/teacher conference, and he dealt with it by having a year long affair with said teacher. In recounting the story, she remarked that the worst part was that her son never actually learned any math that year. The teacher was passing him solely based on the affair with his father.

Now, as a former educator, there is so much I could say about that whole situation. SO MUCH. I could really go to town on this subject, but I'm not going to today. My mind went a totally different direction on this subject. I started thinking about higher math in general. Now, I never took Trig or Calculus. I just barely passed Algebra and I believe I passed Statistics, but I can't be absolutely sure. I liked to tell people that I just couldn't do it because it was too hard, and I just wasn't a math person. And this may well have been a little true. I was always artistic and very right brained, but mostly I realize now I just didn't want to concentrate and do the work required for these subjects. There were just too many things I would rather have been doing. There were dances to go to, boys to meet, the mall to hang out it, my ballet recitals to practice for, and art to create. There didn't seem to be a single moment allotted in my day to devote to learning higher math concepts.

Well, good Lord! Here was my thought for today: If I knew then what I know, I would probably be a math whiz. A mathmetician probably. With all the obligations in my life now as an adult and a parent, I would love it, LOVE IT, if someone told me that all I really needed to do for the next hour was sit down and learn math. Not referee fights between my children, worry about what to cook for dinner, or whether the bills are paid, just sit down and learn math. I almost think I would possibly find it relaxing.

But I guess that is the story of all our lives. If only we knew then what we know now. Oh, the things I would do if only I had that information back then.

What do you think you would do/be now if you knew then all that you know now???

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