It’s definitely a different time of year down here in Athens, with biting winds and chilling temperatures. I can see why some students have lost all motivation to attend class –– who wouldn’t want to leave their cozy blankets and coffee makers?
I’m all wrapped up in my bed covers now, a Spanish textbook lying oh-so hopefully next to me, but I’m overcome by a special warmness in my heart.
Two letters came for me in the mail this evening –– just a snapshot of the numerous handwritten sentiments I’ve received from family and friends these last three months –– and I can’t help but feel extremely grateful and blessed to be where I am today. And not just content, but actually overwhelmingly satisfied with where my life is today. Now. At this very moment.
I wrote a blog post earlier this month, after a terrible storm-surge of disappointment that came my way in a matter of days. I was angry, severely depressed, and distraught that all of this invested time and energy into ‘becoming who I was meant to be’ had ultimately evaporated within mere hours.
That blog post was never published.
It’s still sitting in my draft box, waiting for my pointer to pounce on the blue ‘publish’ button for all the World Wide Web to read. I’m not ashamed of my words –– I wrote in a state of raw, honest despair that I won’t deny. But after the passage of time, I’ve come to realize I’m incredibly lucky, despite these honestly painful setbacks.
Time goes on. This isn’t the first set of obstacles where I’ve been forced to keep moving, keep breathing living sleeping eating, beyond my desired intent. Daylight came streaming in my window that morning after despair, and I realized instinctively that I had duties to fulfill. I must keep going –– there was no alternative.
And I still have all of my close friends and family cheering me on from the sidelines, appearing in my mailbox every so often for a surprise reminder of all that I have. Readers like you have continued to serve as a buoy through the rather dark times in my life –– maybe in ways you’ll never know.
I’ve continued to be presented with countless opportunities for real-time reporting and editing skills at The Post, the chance to start my own student organization for digital media journalists within the Scripps school, close friends at College Green Magazine, and being able to participate in the ceremonial induction of the Society of Professional Journalists as an official chapter member.
Ohio University suffered a great tragedy this past weekend, where almost 40 students were displaced because of a Union Street fire that lasted well over 6 hours. I passed by the ceaseless fumes on my morning walk –– I couldn’t believe what I was seeing, that I was witnessing a disaster that would change the lives of these affected students forever.
Some of these students lost everything. All of their personal belongings, their clothes, their school materials –– their homes –– gone in the rubble and ash left behind in the fire’s wake.
And here I am, interviewing with The Columbus Dispatch and writing a front-page feature for The Post. What do I have to complain about? Sure, I haven’t gotten everything in my life that I’ve ever wanted –– in fact, very little of what I actually want –– but it’s a life that’s incredibly rich, diverse, and full of chances, chances I’d never have seen had I not come to Ohio University’s Scripps School of Journalism.
So for now, that misery-laden post about being affronted by adversity? It’s going to stay in my draft box.
Until next month,
This post also appears on labellamemoir.tumblr.com