Right from the moment when I began my PhD, and started giving presentations, I braced myself for someone to ask me if I’d ever been bullied at school. Naturally, I made my way through tens of presentations, and my viva, without that question being asked.
The past few weeks, I’ve been into schools collecting data. And that question got asked. I can’t remember what I responded. Luckily I was on my own, without other researchers, in the classroom. I said “yes”, I remember that. It was the last question that I got asked that day.
This week I returned to that class to get the last of the data from the children there. And at question-time, a child says,
“I’m not being rude, or anything, but when you came in you had your hand held like this…..”
I see where he’s going and interrupt him, tell him I’ve had a stroke, which is an easy, if not entirely accurate, way to explain things.I wonder why asking about disability is thought rude. Hope it wasn’t me who made him think that.
Two awkward questions in two weeks. In front of a class full of children. Questions that threw up difficult memories and emotions that I thought I’d buried deep. Shook me. I’ve held things together – but purposely not gone there – in prayer. But it feels like God is reminding me of the pain. So why? What does He want me to bring to Him? Guess there’s only one way to find out. The scary way.