Loving It…On the Bad Days

When people ask me how I like my college, I always respond the same way: “I love it.” I am challenged here, cared for here, supported here. I am involved. I am engaged. I am busy.
I am happy.
Most of the time.
But. There are bad days. Bad weeks. There are unexpected challenges, and I find myself breaking into pieces, watching emotion well through the cracks I have splintered in myself.
It is important, in the midst of the college decision season, to tell you, these times happen. I feel a duty to admit this and to embrace it. We cannot feel joy all the time. I miss my mom. My laptop broke. I was worried about registration. I’m stressed about a research project. I’m sick. This week, I am floundering.
But what it is important to recognize, I think, is that even on these days, this is still an incredible community.
It is easy, when walking around Puget Sound’s campus, to be struck with the idyllic beauty of our world. It is easy when one is admitted to colleges to feel as though you are being overwhelmed with impressiveness of the American University Experience. It seems almost to sparkle. Often, I sparkle too, shining in the light of all the things I see and do here. But this is not always how college feels. It is scary sometimes, difficult sometimes. It is a process of being stretched, pulled wider and longer, a process of expanding. And expanding can hurt.
That’s okay. That’s natural. It is no cause for alarm, and in fact I think bad days deserve our attention and our respect too. Because if every day was the best of our lives, how would anything feel special?
I suppose what I am trying to emphasize is that college isn’t about good days. It is about all days. It is about diving in. That means sunny afternoons on the quad that are like something out of a catalog, that glossy, but it also means listening to John Mayor in my dorm room, nursing my heartache. It means having faith in myself, my school and my community. It means waking up again in the morning, to do it all again.

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About cmobrien

I'm a Sophomore here at UPS, from the SF Bay Area. I love to write, read and learn, , as well as anything I can do outside. I am involved on campus with various clubs and activist groups and write for the Trail. When I'm not reading for class (which most of the time I am) I can be found on a yoga mat, writing poetry or on a hike. I caught the travel bug young and love seeing new places.