Write It on Your Heart (January 6, 2015)

"Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Last year, I wrote a blog post called "Denial, Denial, Denial, Denial, Denial: The Five Stages of College Decision Grief." I wrote it as a high school junior watching the seniors around me crumble as they were hit with decision after decision. I expressed my hatred for what this application process does to us. We are conditioned to hate ourselves based on our rejections. We feel worthless when we don't get into X school, but that one really, really annoying kid does instead.

And as someone who just finished "going through the process" (which I know sounds like I'm talking about genetically modified food, not myself), I understand even more how powerful that pressure is. I consumed more mint chip milkshakes in the week before the early deadline than there were days.

But here's the thing: what if we all take a time out? I know January 1 is now out of the way and many of you high school students are done yelling at the error messages on the Common App, but the air is still filled with so much stress about decisions to come, about that one typo you know was still there when you hit "submit" ... but what if we put all of that aside? What if all of you adults out there put the stress in your life aside?

During the craziness of October before the early deadline (when, no surprise, my blogging stopped for a while), I made a list of things I wanted to do this year when college apps and finals were over. I don't want to call them New Year's Resolutions, though. (Freudian slip -- I typed "Near Year's Resolutions" at first -- which highlights why I hate the term, because I only get near my goals instead of reaching them.) I will instead call this a list of random fun things I want to do this year:

  1. Learn how to read sheet music
  2. Double the amount of time I spend writing (thank you for allowing me to do that, senioritis!)
  3. Read more books for pleasure again (goodbye, standardized testing passages!)
  4. Go to a random A's game (because why not?)
  5. Sleep 8 hours a night
  6. Paint
  7. Run Campus Drive (3.8 miles)

So what will you do for fun this year? Think of things! Make it about you. No matter how crazy your life is, you deserve to do something that serves no purpose other than making you happy. Here's to a great 2015!