F=ma is Newton’s second law of motion.

The force of an object is equal to the multiplication of its mass and its acceleration.

I was first taught this equation back in college in the 2004 Algebra-based Physics II class at the University of Colorado at Boulder. I used this formula a million of times and understood everything in this class just using this formula. Whenever I had a doubt solving a problem, I would scribble down F=ma and it worked as a charm, as if the whole world of Physics was enclosed inside this little, pretty formula so simple and so contained in its explanation.

F=ma became my modus operandi and my friendly companion during the in-class office hours where we were all asked to stay in the Physics lounge to work on CAPA, the challenging homework we were assigned weekly.



There I felt in love a bit less with F=ma and a lot more with my Physics Teacher Assistant. So this formula started equating love to me. And continued to do so for few years afterword as our teacher-student relationship progressed into a wonderful love story entirely based on the principles of such simple formula where everything was measured in equal weight and a very nice, but subtle acceleration. It worked like a scaled perfectly balanced. It was Physics 101 at its best! We were both different in mass, but our speed was similar and our force ended-up being slightly off, yet charmingly controlled.

Until one day an external energy came to disturb the whole equilibrium. And so, as Newton’s third law says-For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction- this force applied on our bodies equated to an opposite and equal force in response and the relationship and both of us felt apart in million pieces for lack of control over our own accelerations.

I guess the unpredictable move that came upon us was indeed uncontainable by the formula itself after all. Or was it and we failed at it? The point of the discussion here is not to find a solution for there could be many or none, but it is to say that although there are laws controlling our universe and although there are proof of using them just right, we must always be prepared for the unexpected and be ok with the idea that what was once perfect and moving smoothly in one and the same direction can backfire and abruptly change orientation.

No panic. No problem. Just acceptance and strength to move forward in a new direction with the same willingness of accelerating and living just as fully as we once did.

ps: the relationship ended 10 years ago and my TA and I are still the best of friends, but today I found myself thinking of F=ma while doing yoga trying to find an explanation on how to simplify the intricacies of today’s relationships. So much has changed since I was 21 years old, although it has only been 10 years. It is another world out there and fear of loving just as much as one is loved has made F=ma that much more difficult to solve. Too many excuses to feeling. Too little time dedicated to others instead than ourselves. Too little commitment to a common cause toward growth and respect for one another. Too much fuss about internet-depending relationships and too little attention given to the person next to us in the actual present time.

F=ma will always have a special meaning for me. It will always equate love.

Let see who will think the same. One day.

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