When I was in high school (many years ago), my English class had a poetry unit during which we read “To My Dear And Loving Husband” by Anne Bradstreet:
If ever two were one, then surely we.
If ever man were loved by wife, then thee.
If ever wife was happy in a man,
Compare with me, ye women, if you can.
I prize thy love more than whole mines of gold,
Or all the riches that the East doth hold.
My love is such that rivers cannot quench,
Nor ought but love from thee give recompense.
Thy love is such I can no way repay;
The heavens reward thee manifold, I pray.
Then while we live, in love let’s so persever,
That when we live no more, we may live ever.
My English teacher had us students write a poem in a similar style, and we had to title the poem “To My Dear And Loving ____.” I absolutely loved the poem, and I remember thinking the assignment was awesome. (Though if you asked me what I wrote my poem about, I couldn’t tell you.)
Within the past few weeks, this poem and assignment have resurfaced in my mind (for reasons unknown to me.) But when it did reappear, I realized what I would have titled my poem had I been given this assignment today: “To My Dear And Loving Science.”
Because I am a scientist and not a poet, I won’t subject you to my rendition of Anne Bradstreet’s beautiful poem, but I will tell you a brief story.
Science has been a major part of my life for as long as I can remember. When I was a kid, my mom (a biologist by training) had me and all my siblings do science experiments and participate in science fairs. She also took us into her histology lab and let us use the microscopes, making us feel like we were cool scientists. In middle school, science was the class in which I always had the most fun (even if the fun was mostly due to friends in the class being goofy.) In high school, I took as many science classes as I could, including my first physics class, and fell even further in love with science.
Now, I have one degree in physics and am working towards another degree in hydrology. Every day, I wake up, and I’m so excited to see where my science takes me. I get to code, I get to write, I get to read, I get to learn, and, maybe most importantly, I get to go out and get my hands dirty (literally—field work is the greatest.)
I have an absurd amount of love for science, and I realized that I wanted to be able to share that love with other people. And thus, Muddy Manda was born.
So, to my dear and loving science:
I am so grateful for you and all you have done for me. You have given me a way to connect with the world that I haven’t found in anything else. I hope that I can share you far and wide, so others may, too, know your beauty and power.