“Cause sometimes that mountain you’ve been climbing is just a grain of sand”

Don’t sweat the small stuff. You’ll get through this more easily than you may think. Today, I am participating in the Daily Post challenge to write a blog based simply on the word ‘grain‘. One of my first thoughts when encountering this word, is Carrie Underwood’s song “So Small”. Carrie does a great job of reminding her listeners through this song that what seems so difficult to get through, is not as big of an obstacle as it may seem. Nothing is as bad as it may appear to be.

“Sometimes, love is all that matters after all, it sure makes everything else seem so small.” It is important to love others and yourself, and having love makes anything possible. That exam or paper that seems impossible? It’s not as bad as you may think. You can study with friends or ask a tutor or professor for help in writing a paper. Having support and love from family and friends helps to get through what you make think is a huge mountain. So, when things get hard, remind yourself that it’s only a grain. One grain of sand.

What it Means to be a Resident of B32

“Are you sure?” Bobby, my roommate, asks as I walk in my room in my towel after a shower as he watches a movie in my room with Heather, my roommate. He always offers to step out of the room. After so many times, it becomes no biggie.

I laugh. “Just turn around, it’ll only take me a minute to change.” Bobby lays down on Heather’s bed with his face in her pillow while I quickly get dressed. Two minutes later comes on a knock on the door.

“There’s Coia!” Heather says. She opens the door and Coia (Rachel), my roommate, opens saying, “Hello friends! How’s everyone doin’?”

“Good!” we reply in unison. We all go back to what we were doing, finding comfort in the four of us always occupying a room meant for two.

Did I mention that I had three roommates? Three people made my first year extra special who occupied my room the most, even though only one was my official roommate. We call ourselves the four Residents of B32.

My official roommate, Heather, and I were not the only two people who lived in our double. Although we were the only two who slept the night in the room (Bobby took an occasional nap or two in the room…or thirty), we were not our only roommates to each other. In addition to us, our best friends Rachel and Bobby spent 99% of our freshmen year in our room. We were the four roommates of Sem B32.

It is something special to be a Resident of B32. My fellow residents are there for me without fail. We support each other when we need a good cry (whether it be from the stress of finals or watching Marley and Me), or when we need a good laugh. Fortunately, there are usually more laughs than there are tears. Being a resident of B32 means laughing along with your roommate when she flicks her shoelace in her eye, or when he pronounces things in a Jersey accent (we love you, Bobby). It means being there for each other. It means being around for the good and the bad. It means accepting the fact that your roommate likes to eat a granola bar at midnight when her stomach growls, or that she will laugh hysterically at any episode of The Office even though she’s seen every episode more than once. You accept the little things about each other. You love them despite the fact that they try and ask questions when watching a movie they haven’t seen, or when they tag you in Facebook videos while you’re trying to study. In addition, you always approve or disapprove outfits choices when your roomie isn’t sure if they like what they’re wearing.

I have become closer with these three from being in close quarters with them more than anyone (a double isn’t that big!). But, it’s so great! We know each other’s likes, dislikes, when they’ll arrive at our room after getting out of class, or when they need us to get them dinner because they have class. “Do you want a chicken and cheese quesadilla, Bobby?”

We encourage each other to get our asses off the comfort of our beds and go to Zumba (We need to be there for the “Two jumps” to Fireball!). It’s a perfect balance of reminding each other to “Treat yo self,” but also tag along when one of us goes to the gym because we want a good workout. Bobby tells me to “Treat yo self,” more than he comes to the gym with me. I still love you, Bobby.

Although Bobby and Rachel might not be around for Heather and I’s midnight roomie chats, they are just as much our roomies as we are to each other. We would not be the Residents of B32 without them. Despite Bobby again being a Sem resident next year as a Moreau Student Minister, and Rachel and I living in a double in Boland with Heather across the hall, we will always be the Residents of B32. I will always find comfort in sharing a room with the three of you, even if it can’t be Sem B32 again. Boland 312 and 321, we’re coming for you.

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Endless “Thank you”s

The first person I owe thanks to is my mother. My friend, my role model, my rock, my person. Her undying love and support for me at every moment of my life makes me continue to have a positive outlook on life, and work hard and try new things, knowing she will always have my back. She is fun-loving, talkative, incredibly friendly, and most loving woman I know. I wouldn’t want it any other way. My mother can read me like a book. She always helps me in any way she can when I need her. We fight like any other mother and daughter do, but we always make up, usually by one of us saying “Can we be done fighting now?” She knows that every human makes mistakes. I can never thank her enough for her unwavering love and care for me. My mom is my rock, my person who is willing to listen to any story, rant, or joke I may have. She is one of a kind.

My dad. My hero, my rock, the kindest man I have ever met. His gentle smile and warm heart make me smile in the darkest of times. Although mostly quiet, sometimes the simplest of sentences of encouragement from my dad make all of the difference in the world. He takes care of my mom and I like there’s no tomorrow. His undying love and care for me is something that is special. He is incredibly hard-working, more like a workaholic, but I admire that about him. He always works to do his best, something I aspire to do as well as he does. My dad and I are so much alike, I love being able to share in some of the same things with him. He is a proud dad. I’m honored to be someone he is proud of.

My best friend, Lizzie. She is there for me always, without fail. No matter what she has going on in her own life, she always made time to be here for me in my times of need. (And believe me, a girl needs her best friend quite often.) Lizzie has a heart of gold, her intentions are always pure, and she looks out for me always. I am not sure what my life would be like if I didn’t have her for the past thirteen years as my best friend. (I don’t know how she hasn’t gotten sick of me yet 😉 ) Lizzie is there for me when it feels like I am trudging through hell, or when I stumble over my words I am so excited. Having a best friend like her is something extraordinary.

My horseback riding instructor, Maura. Her confidence in me and encouragement is who helped me become the person I am today. She pushes me a little further when I hesitate, knowing I can achieve something if I find the courage. She has helped to make me strong and hold my own, and not afraid to be tough once in awhile. Although she taught me this with horses and horseback riding, it’s affected my life outside the barn. I stand up for myself, and do not let people walk all over me. I encourage others to try their hardest, because that’s what I appreciate being done for me.

Two of my high school teachers, Miss Hamilton and Mrs. Pine. These two women were not only teachers for me, but advisors and mentors. Miss Hamilton is one of the kindest women I know. She always made learning fun, and is always interested my life outside of class and would go out of her way to make my day better. Mrs. Pine, my confidant in my junior year of high school. I took pre-calculus with her; I remember thinking about dropping into the college prep level instead of taking honors, but I am so happy I didn’t. I spent an hour everyday with Mrs. Pine in her classroom after school, either preparing for tests, or simply doing the homework and getting her help whenever I needed it. She never let me give up in trying to solve a problem. She wanted me to do my best. Both of these women talked to me about life, and I love going back to my high school to visit them.

My religion professor in my first year of college, Professor Lanci. He has helped me learn so much about life and who I am without having to tell me anything directly. He teaches us so much about religion and life that allows me to reflect on my beliefs and what makes me the person I am today. I have accepted things about myself and found a greater confidence in who I am thanks to him and this class. Even though we were in a classroom, he taught me endless things about life outside of it. I admire how confident he is in who he is, and his adversity and strength in any battle.

These are only a few of the many people in my life that I owe endless thanks; it important to remind myself of how lucky I am to have these people in my life or have the opportunity to learn from them.

World Created in Our Cell Phones

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I found this picture on Facebook the other day, and I love it. As you might have noticed from my previous post on living in the moment, I think our forgetting about living for the experience is caused by our addiction to social media. *Disclaimer: I am part of this culture and I am not judging anyone* I have recently written a paper on this for my religion class regarding an idea of a social media cleansing ritual. Many teens today spend so much time on their cell phone. This picture depicts our generation; we invite friends over and we end up spending the entire time physically in the same room, but mentally in different worlds created in our cell phones. We spend so much time missing out on experiences because we are staring at our phones. It hinders actual face to face conversation, and from truly living. My friends and I seem to care more about what other people are doing and posting on Instagram or tweeting, rather than our physical friend in the room with us. Why do we get so wrapped up in other peoples’ lives rather than focusing on our own?

Anytime I talk about this issue in our society, I always reference concerts. People watch entire concerts through their cell phones because they want a video posted of each song on their Snapchat stories. You’re missing out on the actual concert because you want other people to know you’re at it. What’s more important: posting about it on social media to show others the great night you’re having or actually experiencing the great night? I think the second option is the right answer. Some people may say that you have pictures as a memory to look back on the event, but I think actually being a part of the event and truly experiencing it trumps any video or picture you may have from it. Check out the elderly woman in the picture below; that’s how we should all be living. We need to live for the experience. (Ironically, I found that on Twitter even though I’ve been arguing to use social media less and live for the experience)

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