I Love Science Because

I love science because the idea a bird can FLY from continent to continent twice a year and come back to the same place, amazes me. I love things with wings, with feathers, with elaborate songs and displays. I love birds, and I have since I was young, (granted I still am, so lets just say, younger). I love how many different ways there are to move from place to place throughout the year. So many different strategies and ideas. I love the fact that migration has captured the human imagination for millenia and connects people across languages and cultures.

I love science because the world is out there, ready to be discovered.

Did you know we don’t know everything? I am reminded of this constantly, and I find it EXHILARATING. I love doing science because I get to be apart of this process and contribute something new and exciting, even if it is small.

I love science because I want to change the world, and I believe everyone can. I believe for society to continue we need to work to understand our environment better, to know how to manage it and how to live with it in peace.

I love science because time after time nature is what soothes me, it is where I go when everything is wrong in the world. The more time I spend there, the more questions I have. What better way to answer some of these questions then with science!

I believe to face the challenges of today and tomorrow we need as many and as diverse a pool of ideas as possible. I believe I stand a chance of helping form an idea that might be worth listening too. I believe to solve the problems of today and tomorrow we need science to help discover the solutions, since we may not have them yet.

I love science because my parents let me be who I was. They let their only daughter collect bugs from streams and do water quality test for science fair projects. They bought me binoculars and field guides and giant vests as presents and continue to endure the fact I am always covered in dirt. I love science because we did science at home, and the excitement of learning was everywhere. I love science because my dad loved science, and while he’s no longer with me I remember his excitement about the outdoors and I know he’d love to see what I am doing now. I love science because my Opa (grandfather) loves science, which isn’t suppose to be high on the list of interests for a retired dutch farmer, and he has taught me stereotypes are not worth repeating.

I love science because it brings out the child in everyone. You show a bird to a group of people and the adults will act all bored and disinterested at first, but after the kids ooh and ahh, you hold it up to the grown ups and they finally let their eyes get wide. We all need this sort of wonder in our lives.

I love science because it takes away boundaries and limits. I get to spend time with all kinds, ages, sexes and groups of people from all sorts of places. I get to learn about their science, but also about them, their experiences, hopes and dreams. I get to go to places I never thought I’d see and bring others along with me. Because of science I have hiked across lava fields with my mom, backpacked through boreal forests with my husband, met one of my best friends, spent months riding around wetlands on ATVs.

I love science because it is hard, just like life is hard. I feel the most at peace when I am doing something new and challenging, and every day science presents me with another opportunity to do that. I love science because it has taught me how to teach others, how to help someone grow even when it hurts. I love science because someday I will get to help young scientists, and I hope I do as good a job as the mentors I have now.

As I lay awake tonight wondering where ‘my rails’ are in their migration I am reminded why I love science. I love science because it feeds my imagination and lets me travel with them.

This post was inspired by a post of the same name by Hope Jahren, who’s blog is much better written and worth reading then this one.

Written on January 1, 2014