After a Quarter of Winging It…

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Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

After four term papers, three exams, two observational finals, and one project/presentation… My fall quarter is over. And let me just say, my junior year has already been quite the wild ride.

If you remember, I started the quarter off early here for Week of Welcome orientation program and I got to be a Cross Cultural Experience WOW leader for the first time. I got the privilege of having 16 Wowies (first years) to fill the week up with and I love every single one of them, truly they are incredible.

From there, the people just kept adding up in my life as I joined focus groups and picked up in PCE (Pilipino Cultural Exchange) so now I have two adings under me in my family. Those two also make up one highlight of my quarter. I also convinced Nick to join PCE and trust me when I say I’m pretty excited about it.

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Photo by Jed Villejo on Unsplash

If you’ve been following me since last year, then you’ll remember that I also took part in PCW or Polycultural Weekend back in April right before the blackface incidents and I had two hostees— one of them did commit to Cal Poly and I love running into her on campus as one of the many people I care about here in SLO.

And on top of those, I submitted a piece to OWN (original women’s narratives) again that will be performed in the show but not by me, because I am also going to be a part of WOW again, but this time as a CCE Special Teams FAC leader. So that’s exciting… I have no idea what to expect or even if I can handle it, but that seems to be the theme of junior year so far.

Now, beyond the people I’ve added to my life, this has also been my first year starting off as an English major so I was in all english classes this quarter. I have never done so much reading that I didn’t actually want to do in my whole life. Remind me to never take all english classes again; even while some of it was really interesting and good for me, I’m so burnt out.

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Photo by Val Vesa on Unsplash

Maybe that has to do with all the things I’ve been up to because I finally officially finished that novel and started on a new one, I’ve written more articles for Her Campus (check out the latest one here), my essay writing has improved at least a little, I decided on a technical and professional communications minor/certificate and a concentration in creative writing, I still work at the University Store and now I’m a tutor at the Writing center as well, I learned how to take the high road (reluctantly), and I’ve learned just a little more about myself along the way.

You could say that I’ve had a busy quarter. And well… Next quarter is going to be busier.

It’s college after all, probably not the best 4-6 years of our lives, but definitely one of the few times you can come home from a party to turn in a term paper at 1:30 in the morning or drive two minutes down the street to meet up with all your friends just to cook together.

So for now, I’m going to enjoy the fact that it’s my winter break and I can finally catch up on reading and writing what I want. And I’m not going to check my grades obsessively because there’s nothing I can do about it now. I’m just happy to have another crazy quarter under my belt and to see some time to sleep waiting for me these next three weeks.

Here’s to a beautiful Friday and I hope you’re all doing well. If anyone is still chugging through finals, check out that Her Campus like above, it’ll help you through it.

Good luck and I’ll see you next week. Have a great weekend.

Why Sometimes, It’s Not About the High Road

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Photo by Björn Grochla on Unsplash

“When people go for the low blow…”

You have two options here: you either take the high road OR you decide to go just a little bit lower.

So which way do you go?

The thing about taking the high road is that you get to have the full knowledge of what happened and still follow through on being a good person– maybe a little more cautions, but good nonetheless. It lets you be the bigger person, right?

But what about the other option, being petty and deciding to maybe go for the low blow back sometimes? Because if I’m being honest, taking the high road can make a person feel pretty small and maybe, maybe some days you deserve to fight back for yourself a little bit.

This week has been an absolute whirlwind and not necessarily a good one. Among everything else, I got an email on Monday telling me that I am almost at my graduation date… I wanted to delete that email. Because that means that I’m headed out into the real world soon or I at least need to know where I’m going.

I have no clue. Not really.

I mean, how do we figure that out when there are midterms and classes and auditions and articles and homework and work…

And then the drama, there’s always more drama isn’t there? Whether it’s drama in your work environment or even within your relationships, there’s always a little something to top it all off. My mom keeps telling me to take the high road– she’s right, as always, but maybe I want to be a young and slightly petty, reckless twenty-year old sometimes.

Because, well, college is hard.

Most of us are barely sleeping, let alone balancing that with the amount of work there is to do and things to keep track of. Of course, you can’t forget the fun in there somewhere too– with a day of 88 degrees in SLO today, you can bet half of the campus was at the beach.

There’s got to be some kind of balance in it all. And yes, I’m sure you know how I feel about finding that at this point; I talk about it a lot. But remember this: just because you find it, doesnt’ mean it’ll always hold.

Sometimes that balance breaks, into all these teeny tiny pieces that you get to clean up and rearrange all over again. Then it’s got a new weight and a new type of equilibrium to it, a new kind of balance.

Maybe you find that through taking the high road and being the bigger person.

Maybe you go for the low blow instead…

But is there some inbetween?

Like that in-between of being too nice versus being a narcissist. I’m more on the early end of that spectrum, therefore I get stepped on and taken advantage of a lot.

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Photo by Chris Lawton on Unsplash

Maybe my inbetween means changing that.

Among the rest of it, this week has reminded me that some things truly are not always what they seem– authenticity is hard to find in everything we do, especially the people we surround ourselves with. Who knows, maybe I’ll take the low blow or maybe I’ll take the high road. Either way, the status quo here is changing.

So we will see whatever happens next.

Finding a Way Back To Balance

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Photo by Wes Hicks on Unsplash

It’s my junior year at a school that for the past two years, I kept trying to leave every chance I got; every day I stick around, I find myself running into more reasons to stay— my people.

College has been rough, I think I’m allowed to say that, but it hasn’t been for nothing. You see, I spent just about my entire freshman year studying and while my grades didn’t always reflect it, my head was constantly stuck in a textbook. I had NO idea what I was doing. I still don’t.

But there is one thing I did last year that I think will completely change how this year goes for me: I put myself out there. I got involved with PCW and Her Campus, along with WOW and several other clubs which I’ll admit, most of the time I didn’t really want to go. But I went, I found some commitments and I held them. Because the biggest thing I got out of each was a home in just a few people along the way.

Give me five minutes on our campus and I guarantee I’ll run into a least one person I’m friends with, a concept which is still so wild to me. Even just yesterday, I ran into another friend from my freshman dorm and it took at least 10 minutes for us to catch up, just a little bit.

I dove into this year in a way that I couldn’t even prepare for: head first. There was truly no time for hesitation, and evidently sleep because I’m still trying to catch up. Even so, I’m realizing that there are some things you have to go into like that: without hesitation and no expectations as to what comes next. At this point, I can attest that absolutely nothing we do goes as planned anyway.

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Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

As much as I’d love to say that I’ve finally figured college out and I’m as fulfilled as I want to be, I’m not. There’s something missing. Though this is my first year as an official English major, I’m not going to lie and say that it’s been everything I’m looking for— that’s what minors and clubs are for too. I’m sure all of us quarter system students realize how quickly everything moves at this point; my midterms started week 2 and we’re just finishing week 4, but people are burnt out already. It’s intense. With the heinous amount of reading and assignments we have as students, it can be hard to find a balance.

I think the dangerous thing about college, about any time in our lives, is focusing too much on the wrong kind of balance.

Develop a safe balance between fun and work— maybe mix the two, but not too much.

Create a balance in your people— professional peers or other friends— find some support and love, but also find some wild ones to push your own comfort zone just a tad too. Remember, I said a tad.

And most importantly, find a middle ground between spontaneity and consistency. Don’t dwell too much in one or the other.

It’s great if you usually get your work done early. But if you always stay in on Friday nights or get all your homework done by Saturday morning, maybe try something else this week— hit the movies, go for a midnight doughnut run, try out that new restaurant and get all dressed up for no reason, even just do a potluck night with friends. Anything goes, just remember to do something different every once in a while.

We’re all too young to keep to the same routines or always fall asleep in the sofa by 9:30pm— yes Dad, I’m talking to you. Switch it up every once in a while, live your lives.

I’ve got a lot on my plate this year… After what year two turned into, quite possibly too much. But right now, I’m going for it— all of it. If I need to pull back, I can; there is always room to pull back. I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of feeling like I’m standing still, even at a school and in a system where everything is constantly moving. I need to find a way to feel like I’m moving again. At this point, it’s now or never, make or break for me.

We all just have to find a balance— I hope you find yours.


Here’s to whatever comes next. Happy Friday everyone and I’ll see you Tuesday for a new Bookworms.