Interested in exploring how personal stories and aesthetic modes of representing experiences can nudge open academic and educational spaces, this article/collection of particles seeks to document our encounters of being affected and called to respond to things the other has written and represented. As a way of engaging with questions about what research and research data might be and become, our attention has been drawn to stories and images from our lives that we have not shaken off – and to how, as we have opened these to the other, making once private moments public, our hiddens have morphed tenderly into a shared knowing and being. As we have acted on the call we have felt to respond we have found ourselves entering spaces of collaboration, communion, contemplation, and conversation – spaces illuminated by what we have not been able to – and cannot – set aside. Using visual and poetic materials we explore heartfelt and heartbroken aspects of our educational worlds and lives, to be present with each other and our (re)emerging personal and professional meanings. We see the shared body (of work, of writing, of image) that develops from the taking of brave steps and the risky slipping off of academic masks and language, as a manifestation of the trusted and nurturing spaces that can be generated through collaborative opportunities to gather together. These steps towards unveiling hiddens are producing in us and of us a friendship, fluency, and fluidity as we write new ways of becoming. In turn, we hope the uncovering and revealing of our dialogue in the public gathering of this journal might supports readers’ telling of their own life stories through what calls them to respond.
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