Anything But Math!

I was thrilled to have my degree, but I do remember happily declaring, “No more math!”

Let me just say that math has never truly been my thing. When I was attending a community college, I saved my math courses for last. Since I started college as a late bloomer, I knew I would eventually have to take my math classes if I wanted to transfer to the university with my associate’s degree in hand. Still, I put it off. In my mind, I just figured if I passed everything else, I would just have to put my fears aside and just dive in. That last semester I took algebra and statistics, and I was in math hell. I never worked so hard in all my life!

When I was younger, I absolutely dreaded math! In middle school, once we began fractions and beginning geometry, I just wanted to curl up in the fetal position and hide from the world. I had great teachers that helped me, but the more they endeavored to help me overcome my fears, well, the worse it became. My mom tried too, but I just shut down when it came to math.


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Since I was close to my grandmother, my mom sent me to her house, so my grandmother could help me with my fractions. My grandmother only went to the eighth grade, but she was one of the smartest ladies I knew, and my grandma loved fractions. In fact, since she loved fractions, this became a huge problem. Bless her heart; grandma enjoyed math, so she just went to town and completed all my homework assignments. This was great until it was time for me to take a test. Too bad I couldn’t smuggle my grandmother into class, so that she could take the test for me!

Well, I did pass my college math courses and went on to graduate with honors with a bachelor of arts degree in English. As a single mother, I was thrilled to have my degree, but I do remember happily declaring, “No more math!” But, the cosmic powers that be had a restrained humorous side and decided I wasn’t entirely through with math just yet, for my very first job was teaching general education courses to female inmates.   And of course, I had to explain geometry and algebra! In the end, it was a great experience, and I discovered I could do just about anything if I have too, even if that means teaching math at women’s prison in Colorado!





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8 thoughts on “Anything But Math!

  1. An enjoyable piece, and a stray comment. When I was tutoring 2nd year engineering (uni) students would finish early and show me their work. Men: “Here it is, all done” -> solution completely wrong. Women: “I’ve done it but I don’t think it’s right” -> perfect solution. This happened over and over and over. I can understand not liking maths, but where do women get the lack of confidence, given that they are perfectly fine at it?

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  2. I totally get it, all through school I struggled with math. My mum actually wrote the times tables on big sheets of paper and hung them in my bedroom. The first thing I saw when I woke up and the last thing I saw before sleeping was the times tables….lol. If someone had told me when I was in school that I’d end up as a banker for most of my working life I would have laughed at them.

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