sophomore year (so far.)

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and when i turned in my final, the first semester of my sophomore year is over. i’m on the next bus to syracuse and the next flight out to atlanta.

it’s a weird feeling–i was homesick for the most part of this semester and was dying to go home. all semester long, i’ve wanted to give my family a huge bear hug and see their faces. not to say that those feelings have gone away after my finals ended, but i get closer to seeing them, the reality that the semester is over is become more real, too.

as i walked to my final final (heh), i had looked outwards at the all too familiar west campus, the day-old snow crunching under my shoes. as happy as i am to be finally done with finals season, the reality is that my time at cornell has an expiration date of four years, and every time i leave campus for break–summer or winter–is one closer to the final time i leave campus. eight semesters, eight departures. i’ve used up two, and tomorrow would be my third. and before i knew it, i would be hitting my eighth and final. while i don’t know what it’s like to feel that way yet–hitting that last goodbye–the bittersweetness i feel now only foreshadows what i’ll be feeling five semesters from now.

yet, even with these bittersweet undertones, i feel as though as my time at cornell goes on, the ‘bitter’ started to overpower the ‘sweet’. whereas freshman year was full of hope and excitement and aspirations and eagerness, sophomore year was… different. i know all too well that a lot of us become jaded by our second year, roughened around the edges by not just cornell’s winters but also its demanding pace… and unfortunately i was not the exception. i was less inspired. numb, in fact. for me, sophomore year was a mix of frustration, loneliness, and defeat punctured by the occasional moments of happiness.

don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t all bad. however, for the better part of this year, i felt lost. i feel like i’m just searching and searching, but what i’m looking for isn’t there. and no, i’m no longer chasing the elusive concept of happiness, but more like a place and a sense of purpose. i think i’ve momentarily lost my place–i know this feeling won’t be here to stay, but it’s something that’s just been bothering me. i go through the motions and i study and i work hard and i participate in the community and socialize and try to be a high-functioning ivy league student who [appears] to have everything figured out. but at the end of the day, i’m not sure where i’m headed, i don’t see an end point, and there’s a bit of fear mixed in with confusion and displacement.

and therein lies the reason that i want to go home–i desperately need a break from this place. the familiarity of home and family is all too welcome after a semester of what feels like swimming against the current.

maybe it’s all a part of growing up. or maybe it’s just sophomore year.

 

thanksgiving 2016

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the ‘i don’t live in the northeast’ struggle: every thanksgiving/break, i have to somehow find a way to get through the break with:

1. adequate food (dining halls are closed during break)

2. adequate social interaction (campus is so crazy quiet on big breaks like thanksgiving)

last thanksgiving, i spent it eating mini bagels in my own dorm (they weren’t even toasted, ugh) because all of my friends went home and i didn’t have anyone to spend it with. i didn’t want to go through the hassle and money to buy a plane ticket back go georgia, so i just stayed.

this thanksgiving, i was lucky enough to be invited to stay with my best friend in washington d.c. (well, a suburb of, but you get the idea) over break. and of course meet up with other friends (apparently everyone lives in that area), take a break from schoolwork, and recharge before diving back into the cruel, cruel reality of finals. i’ll be sharing some pictures here for you all to enjoy.

heartbroken .

 

my campus was devastated this morning. shocked, stunned, in mourning.

the sun seemed to have forgotten to show its face today as i walked up to slope to class, strangely unaccompanied. there was a strange lack of students from my classes. some professors cancelled class entirely. teaching assistants offered assignment extensions. someone had written the word ‘horrified’ in chalk. the chime masters played the funeral march from the bell tower.

tears fell, and hugs were exchanged. a stunned silence fell over the student body as we contemplated. and the sky remained gray.

my heart feels heavy as i come to terms with america’s decision, wondering how people could possibly support a man who has openly proclaimed that people like me don’t matter. that i, as a woman, am lesser. that i, as an immigrant, do not deserve to be here. that i am less of a human being because i am a minority. and what of my friends? those who identify with the lgbtq+ community, those who are latinx, muslim, black, asian, immigrants, refugees… the list goes on. explain to us why we are lesser. look us in the eye and say that we don’t matter. tell me that the things this man has said was acceptable.

there are political differences, there are political disappointments, and there is fear. legitimate fear that your way of life is going to change because of the decisions of a man who attacks not your ideals and political beliefs but your very identity and existence. legitimate fear that something is going to happen to your friends or your family because they simply don’t fit into the vision that was curated by this version of america.

i believe this election outcome was fueled, in part, by pain and desperation. the pain was strong enough, deep enough, to condone all the hate. i get that–but it didn’t make the outcome any less devastating.

today, we mourn. tomorrow, we stand back up. we support each other, we keep hoping. we choose kindness over hate, acceptance over bigotry. we speak up. and then maybe then we can fix the divide. fix the pain.

take care of yourself. take care of each other.

[Review] Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

me before youSynopsis

They had nothing in common until love gave them everything to lose . . .

Louisa Clark is an ordinary girl living an exceedingly ordinary life—steady boyfriend, close family—who has barely been farther afield than their tiny village. She takes a badly needed job working for ex–Master of the Universe Will Traynor, who is wheelchair bound after an accident. Will has always lived a huge life—big deals, extreme sports, worldwide travel—and now he’s pretty sure he cannot live the way he is.

Will is acerbic, moody, bossy—but Lou refuses to treat him with kid gloves, and soon his happiness means more to her than she expected. When she learns that Will has shocking plans of his own, she sets out to show him that life is still worth living. (more…)

College + Dorm Room Essentials

Today I’ll be sharing with you guys some of the thing I can’t live without while I’m in college. :) This isn’t a comprehensive to-buy list but rather just some college and dorm room essentials that may be less talked about or likely forgotten. Hope this is helpful for some of you and be sure to check out my youtube channel! (more…)