Looking back on the past year, I have so many things to be grateful for. Here's a list of things I am thankful for:
- Finishing sophomore year and completing some research papers that pushed me to learn about new and difficult topics outside the hedges of Rice
- My Alternative Spring Break trip and group. I loved working with my co site leader Nathan who embraced me despite our faults and flaws, and it was amazing getting to know and live with all of our participants, who are now forever our babies. The class of 6th graders I worked with over that week left such a deep impact on me. I will never forget about the hopes and dreams I have for them and how on the last day, one of the girls came back into the classroom after dismissal and promptly said to me, Ms. KC I know you watched us walk out the classroom today but one day we will walk onto a college campus. I just started crying because I would love for them to be able to enter into and finish college one day, but I will probably never know, and given the circumstances that they are in, many of them may never make it. I am thankful that this trip is happening again this school year in 2014, because I hate to abandon the kids we all grew to love.
- Trying new things. From going to the Houston Rodeo to traveling halfway across the world for a summer in China and Australia, I learned and tried so many new things, all of them directly or indirectly related to my experience at Rice.
- Making new friends. I could not have asked for better flatmates during my stay in Shanghai over the summer, and along the way I made new friends at work and traveling in Beijing and Sydney. Everyone has such incredible stories to tell. My suite mates this year became a new sort of family for me, and I made friends with very diverse and introspective people across campus.
- Checking my privileges. It is so humbling to be reminded of how lucky I am that I have all these opportunities and capabilities (hats off to my Poverty Justice and Human Capabilities minor for this one). I am a healthy fully functioning college student thriving at a prestigious institution, with friends and family who love and support me. I try to take a step back, realize all the things that I have a privilege to not have or experience, and treasure what I do have, which is so so much.
- An eventful fall semester of junior year. In some ways it has been my hardest semester yet at Rice. I came back to Rice with a few goals: get into the study abroad program of my choice, make new friends, stay in touch with old friends, intentionally reach out to maintain and strengthen friendships, and go outside of Rice hedges more often. I am happy to say that I think I did a pretty good job completing these goals, or at least I tried my best, which is all that I can ask of myself, so that's not too bad, right?
- Feminism. Oh you sweet delicious ever permeating ideology. I am thankful that there are many feminists and women who inspire me every day with their words and actions and loving hearts. It makes the world more bearable knowing that women and girls everywhere are making a difference every day. I spent Thanksgiving day at Clara's house, and her mom toasted to feminism before we began the day of festivities, and I knew then that I was definitely at the right house for Thanksgiving.
I hope I didn't leave anything out, but I am drawing a blank for now. Happy holidays everyone, and I shall leave you with this article about a nurse's perspective on the 5 most common regrets from her patients before they peacefully leave this world. It encourages me to live a life without regrets as best as I can.