Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The measure of creation

So, yesterday was a pretty spectacularly bad day, but I got over it and moved on, just as I have after any number of spectacularly bad days. Today wasn't a great day, though I was in a much better mood about the things that went wrong and the slowness of doing anything in lab while simultaneously caring for an infant and a husband. It occurred to me that the major change in my attitude came after I wrote about what had happened on my blog. I don't know if the difference is at all obvious to an outside observer, but yesterday's blog post was far more crafted than my usual get-down-the-details-and-don't-worry-about-how-it-sounds post. The same is true of a few other posts I've written when I've been down in the dumps about something, usually (though not always) school-related.

It occurs to me that when things are going well at school, I have less of a need to blog, less of a need to bake the cookies and cakes and endless loaves of tasty bread that Derrick so enjoys. I don't do as much photography or as much painting. I don't think it's because I have more energy when things aren't going well at school--quite the opposite is true. Instead, I think it's because for me science is very much a creative process--I am in the business of creating data, discovering ideas, creating knowledge and sharing that with others. And I get a fix off that. Elder Uchtdorf spoke to this need to create in the most recent conference:

The desire to create is one of the deepest yearnings of the human soul. No matter our talents, education, backgrounds, or abilities, we each have an inherent wish to create something that did not exist before.

Everyone can create. You don’t need money, position, or influence in order to create something of substance or beauty.

Creation brings deep satisfaction and fulfillment. We develop ourselves and others when we take unorganized matter into our hands and mold it into something of beauty—and I am not talking about the process of cleaning the rooms of your teenage children.

It's very true that I find deep satisfaction in the act of creation. Witness this tasty act of creation Derrick and I enjoyed about an hour ago:

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