Monday, July 13, 2009

Chaos to clarity

Chaos. It's part of the process of reordering and renewal. A room looks its worst when things are being sorted before being put away. The storm breaks off dead branches and leaves a mess of debris that must be carried away to leave behind a clean, crisp landscape. A child's tantrum helps express feelings and insecurities.

I'm hoping that the chaos of the doctoral process - figuring out direction and collecting data in preparation for writing - will work itself out. We stayed in class for an extra hour tonight, getting instructions on writing our dissertations. Our professors argued about the trajectory of the degree, part of their process of creating a new program. The anthropological vocabulary of "sorting," "piling," and "coding" still isn't clear. There's a lot of insider language whirling around inside my head. I'm hoping to grasp it as the process of learning continues.

I am hopeful. Just as a room becomes tidy, rubble is cleared, and a child breathes a relieved sigh after the gust of emotions passes, I anticipate understanding what has been undertaken, creating questions that bring insights and answers, and recording the findings in a logical way. In the interim between chaos and clarity, I expect a lot of hours of hard work.

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