Monday, July 23, 2012
Death of a Hero
When I was a little girl I wanted to be an astronaut. I wanted it in the worst way. I studied stars and I dreamed of going into space. I wanted to be Sally Ride. I was 8 when she first went into space. Something about that just inspired me to want to do the same. I wanted to see the earth from far away and travel around with the stars. My 5th grade teacher continued to foster my love for space. She entered into the teacher in space program. I don't know how far she got in it, but obviously she didn't go. She made special arrangements for us to watch the Challenger launch in the library live. I also remember the shock and disbelief when the Challenger blew up. I was undeterred, though. I didn't change my view on becoming an astronaut.
That was actually the plan for several years up until high school. High school is where I discovered advanced math and the fact that I can't do it. I also learned that in order to be an astronaut you really have to go to a military academy and to get into those you have to have a recommendation from a senator or congressman. For a shy, small town girl that was just too impossible so my dream was adjusted. (And continues to be adjusted.)
I was sad to read that Sally Ride died today. A lot of famous folk have died but her death has made me sad in a way that others' have not. I'm glad, though, that her legacy lives on with her science program for girls. Maybe had something like that been there when I was younger I may have achieved my astronaut dream. Maybe not. Geometry still would have kicked my ass.