Thursday, November 13, 2014

19 things I've learned in 19 years

  1. I will always strive for princess-hood.
  2. I am, for the most part, conservative.
  3. I am my parents' daughter.
  4. God has a funny way of working.
  5. I am a living contradiction.
  6. The only people I have always been and will always be able to trust are my parents.
  7. Love is on its way.
  8. "I can't" never did anything.
  9. Pearls are a girl's best friend.
  10. Freckles are precious.
  11. It's not about me.
  12. Everyone has their gifts and their losses.
  13. I'll always go back home.
  14. Work ethic is everything.
  15. I'll have plenty of time to sleep when I'm dead.
  16. Substance abuse is inexcusable.
  17. I'll never have all the answers, so I ought to make every question count.
  18. People who are happy have one secret: they choose to be happy.
  19. I am me.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Inspiration in the most unexpected places

It's Monday.  We have four more days until the weekend--five if you include the rest of today.  Isn't that a daunting thought?  I knew this week would be tough the moment I glanced at my clock last night and realized that after doing homework all weekend, it was 2 a.m. and I still had hours of work left to do.  I finally gave up around 2:30 and headed to bed until 7:30 a.m., oversleeping my alarm for my 8 a.m. class, of course (by some miracle, I wasn't late).  And the day is only beginning.  Needless to say, I could use some inspiration to propel me through the day.  And week.  And month.  And pretty much every day until winter break.

The past several days have yielded inspiration in the most unexpected ways.  Perhaps the fortuitous discovery of such inspirations makes them all the more enlightening: I, too, can make something wonderful of what seems like absolutely nothing.

  1. Raise your hand if you're a Taylor Swift fan.  My hands are staying right where they are, on my laptop's keyboard.  While I look to Taylor as a fashion icon, I am in no way drawn to her music, though there are a few songs with which I have personal connections.  My housemates, however, are die-hard Taylor Swift fans.  With the release of her new album, 1989, and a house roaring with Taylor Swift fandom--you try avoiding 12 girls playing 1989 constantly--Taylor is inescapable (not to mention the fact that my teammates are also obsessed).  Be that as it may, I find it odd that I have not acquired a particular disdain for 1989.  Just the opposite, in fact: I am growing to love the album.  I had been suffering from writer's block for over a week when a full listen-through of 1989 cured me and made the words flow so fast I wasn't sure how I could possibly write them all down.  What changed?  The very things that I could not conceive it the first place, the words.  There is not a single song on the album that does not seem like a narrative of my life at some point, thusly there is not a single song on the album that I do not enjoy listening to.  This cynic had begun a conversion thanks to Taylor Swift's unforeseen inspiration.
  2. Tomorrow is Election Day.  No, I don't have the day off from school.  Yes, my parents do have the day off from work.  In a matter of minutes, this became the best Election Day ever because my mother will be coming to visit me at school.  Last year, I went home a lot--some might say too much.  What can I say?  I'm a homebody, and there's nothing like being with the people I love in the house I grew up in, in a town where there's rarely an unfamiliar face.  What initially seemed like an irrelevant, dismal day to celebrate anything--except democracy, of course--has blossomed into a beam of hope, a ray of sunshine on Marist College.  That is the power of mothers.
  3. I recently received a handwritten letter from one of the most praised journalists in history.  I worked with the gentleman at my internship over the summer and sent him a simple thank-you note when I returned to school in the fall, never expecting a response.  The first day of my internship, I found myself in a heated debate with this gentleman during the Editorial Board meeting--my modern conservatism clashed with his antiquated liberalism.  He later sang my praises for speaking up to contest the widely accepted perspective.  What's more, at the time, I was unaware of his claim to fame--he had always been a name on paper, so I never knew what he looked like in person.  Our debates continued throughout the summer, yielding better stories and more aware readers.  I must have made an impression--though not a fraction of the tremendous impact he made on me--because he took the time to compliment me and offer great words of encouragement in his letter.
Clearly, inspiration can be found in the most unexpected places.  Where will you find yours today?