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Thursday, February 27, 2014

Uncertainty, Anxiety, Hope, and Joy

On Uncertainty

Uncertainty breeds excitement.
The excitement can be anxious anticipation of joys to come,
Or it can be anxious fear of difficulty, illness, or pain.
Either way, uncertainty breeds anxiety. 

My anxiety stems from this uncertainty:
Will I be returning to Romania in the fall?
Shirley feels it, too.  Last night she said, in bed,
"So much depends on the Fulbright."   

Have I just completed my last course,
As a professor of business at Plymouth?
Will I be retiring in June from a beloved job,
One I have worked at for 34 years? 

If the Fulbright grant comes through for us,
Romania will again be our home for a year.
I pray for that, for I love it there,
But what if it does not come?  

I believe in Divine Providence,
So either way, I will adjust, and serve.
Perhaps God wants me here in Plymouth,
To teach once more my course. 

My International Business course is,
The first in the sequence of our new degree, "MBA in I.B."
My ego says that if my Fulbright fails, it is God's will,
That I be here to help launch that degree. 

But my spirit's hope is to launch instead,
What may turn out to be a more important program:
The writing of cases on Romanian businesses, and
Teaching by the case method there.  

At Faculties in Timișoara and Cluj,
Whose programs cry out for such challenging grist,
For their students to ponder, to savor, to think on,
To practice the decision-maker's art. 

For all of the theories of writers before, 
Cannot help a young manager cast onto the floor, 
When a union official comes to his door, 
And says,"We will strike, if you don't pay us more." 

The facts of the cases, the contexts, the plans, 
All the uncertainties that surround the young manager, 
Presented in summary, in six-to-ten pages, 
Engender more learning than tomes writ by sages. 

So in my uncertainty, I have quite a case, 
Of uncertainty-founded anxiety, but no disgrace, 
For with His Grace, I shall live and do well, 
Whatever it is that I find is God's will.
By Duncan C. McDougall, 2-27-2014
Copyright by the author, all rights reserved.

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