Wednesday, April 06, 2011

The 30 Day Photo Challenge: Day 13

Day 13: Something You're Grateful For

Today is such a beautiful day. Today is a day full of things I am so, so grateful for. So today, I took a photograph of something I am eternally grateful for: clouds.

As horrendously rainy and mucky as yesterday was, today is one of those fairy-tale New England days; the sun is bright and omnipotent with a crisp breeze. And those clouds!

I have to tell you, I took this picture by climbing out on a window ledge on the fourth floor of my dorm (sorry, Mom). Sometimes I like to sit there and think, even though that is probably one of those I’m-young-and-kind-of-recklessly-stupid things. But I get to be so close to the sky, so far and close.

You may have noticed if you read regularly, that I’m a bit obsessed with the idea of flight. I love planes (on my bucket list of things to do before I graduate from college is acquiring my pilot’s license), I love Amelia Earhart, I love space, and I love the sky. When I was younger I would peer out of airplane windows, looking for angels hiding in the clouds. I was forever entranced by the sky, wishing so very much to leap out of the plane and to sit on the white tufts of what surely was the softest material in the world.

Yesterday was a day full of contemplation, evidenced by the massive post (thank you, dear readers, who trekked through all of it). Today is a day of jubilation, of celebrating what I’ve been given.

My father asked me this afternoon what was the number one thing I learned yesterday. I thought for a moment before realizing it was, in fact, something I continue to learn every day: be grateful. Be so, so grateful for the time we are given and the gifts we have received. And use what you are given, to the best of your ability.

After my post yesterday I went on to have dinner and work on some stuff for WMHC, still receiving a ton of weird looks for doing such things sans shoes. But when I finally clambered into bed last night (post-showering because, let’s be real, my feet were gross) I was content with the challenge I had faced. A small challenge, one day out of 365, but one that I nonetheless intended to use to invigorate what I had be given. To live into every moment.

Which brings me to this afternoon, which was extra-special because it is actually one of my favorite weeks of the semester: advising week. A paradox, to be sure, because no doubt if you are a college student (or once were) you might be recoiling at the declaration; after all, advising week is one full of meeting with professors and advisors, anguishing over what classes to take when and how best to plan THE FUTURE OF YOUR LIFE.

But I absolutely love advising week, and for one simple reason: I am an absolute, unabashed teacher’s pet. Always have been, always will be. Mock me all you like.

I don’t mean to be a brown-noser or obnoxious. Truly, I genuinely love my teachers and find them to be the most extraordinary people I know. A life devoted to learning and to helping others learn is dually an idyllic career in my eyes, and a cause I think incredibly important. As you might have guessed, I would love to be a professor one day.

Therefore, a week devoted to pouring over courses and talking with professors about big ideas is really enjoyable for me. My advisor also happens to be one of my favorite people on the planet. She’s bloody brilliant, to begin with, and shares my passion for science fiction, tea, Max Weber, social media, and (of course) sociology. She also never fails to ask about my radio show or to recommend at least half a dozen new novels for me to read. And she loves my color-coded flow charts depicting what courses I intend to take over the next three years of college, so you know. She lets me wave my freak flag, as Shrek the Musical would say.

But what I appreciate most about my advisor is how real she is with her students, and how deeply she wants us to be the best we can be. I love advising week because this is such an exciting time- making big plans for the future is swell, but finding the right tools so that I can live into what I was made to do is amazing. Before I came to college I made a commitment to myself, a promise I try to keep every day: treasure every moment. Treasure the beautiful friendships and the amazing professors who will teach you so much. From our greatest pain comes our greatest art, so do not forget to treasure the struggles, the aching necks, the horrible exams.

My mom told me that I was in the midst of a creative explosion right now. I agree, but I don’t think that wholly has to do with me. I mean, how can you not explode and want to document every beautiful detail here? I have so much learn, and I want to drink in every lesson.

current jam: "secrets" onerepublic (thanks for the mix, dad!)
best thing in my life right now: Invisible Children are coming to give a talk/presentation at Mount Holyoke tonight!!
days until departure: 60

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