It’s Thanksgiving, so I’m Gonna Give Some Thanks…

Here I am on Thanksgiving Day writing a paper:

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Happy Thanksgiving from my parents’ kitchen table (a.k.a. my current work space). You are currently looking at my almost ten page draft for Understanding Writing.At this picture’s upper right is comments from my professor to keep in mind as I write. Notice the plate that used to be filled with food at the bottom right. MUST. STAY. ENERGIZED.

Yes, yes I can hear the protests of disbelief that will inevitably come up when people read that above sentence “Wait…what? Britta, it’s Thanksgiving! Can’t you take a break for once? Sit down, eat some food, and stop giving a shit for a little while!”

Okay, well, the truth is, I did absolutely nothing the last two days. I only had one class on Tuesday and though I was intending on doing homework after class, I just could not focus. I spent a good two hours looking through pictures on Humans of New York’s Facebook page on Tuesday night instead of being productive (in my defense, I firmly believe that was time well spent. You can really learn a lot about life from HONY). Yesterday, I left Morris around 11 for the three-hour drive home and when I got home, well, the undeniable beauty of being away from campus for a few precious days set in and, well, nothing was accomplished. I tried to read for one of my classes, but that kind of didn’t work out too well.

So, here I am. On Thanksgiving Day. Writing away. It’s just my immediate family this year and my parents understand that I have a lot of school work, so I don’t want anyone to get the impression that I’m being anti social and avoiding a plethora of family members right now. I’ll put the computer away when we eat dinner, mind you. My brother’s girlfriend is coming over for dessert later and now he’s actually at her house, so it’s just my mom and dad and I at home at the moment.

I’m stressed–okay, more like freaking out, about-to-have-an-anxiety-attack anxious–because I’m getting a lot written, but it feels more like a stream of word vomit than anything useful. I think a writing break is in order. To do more writing. But blogging is different than school work, so I’m fine with that.

In order to take a breather and just relax, I’ve decided to make a quick list–in no particular order–of ten things that I am thankful for.  Things that aren’t this paper and that make me feel all fuzzy inside…this list is really just a stream of consciousness; I didn’t plan it out extensively in advance. I probably forgot something worth mentioning and even if I did remember it, I don’t have all the time in the world to write this blog post.

And with that, I begin.

I am thankful for…

Coffee

Usually too much coffee makes me anxiety-attack anxious, but lately, it’s been saving my butt from falling asleep in the middle of the day. Of course, I usually crash from my caffeine high after a few hours and want to sleep like no other, but as long as it gets me through class and allows me to be majorly productive for a little while, I’m happy. I am so thankful for you, coffee. Your taste. Your smell. The fact that you exist. Oh my god, this is beginning to sound like a very sensual love letter. I think it’s time to move on.

Understanding Writing

Why in the world am I thankful for the class that is currently causing me all this anxiety right now? WHAT THE HELL, BRITTA, ARE YOU NUTS? Please, please, let me explain: I have a love-hate relationship with Understanding Writing because it is probably the best class I have ever taken, yet at the same time my sanity is currently being crushed under all the pressure it is putting on me. I am thankful for it because it has pushed me to become a better writer. A much better writer. I firmly believe every college student should take a comp studies course like Understanding Writing. For better or for worse, it’s changed my life; that’s not something I say often about a class.  Now do you see where I’m coming from? You can still think I’m nuts and probably do, but I’m really okay with that.

WordPress 

I love being exposed to new ideas from interesting and exciting people on a daily basis. I love being able to share my words with others. It doesn’t matter that I don’t have that many followers or that my blog isn’t super popular; what matters is that I’m engaging in this wholly human conversation with people I’d otherwise never be able to converse with because of WordPress. That’s pretty cool.

My family

They’re always there for me and willing to help me. My parents, recent empty nesters who are seriously digging the no-children-around lifestyle as far as I can tell, still allow my brother and I to come home and take over the house now and then. My brother is the weirdest person I know and he’s pretty annoying most of the time, but life wouldn’t be the same without him. I’d say they’re pretty cool, and I’m pretty lucky to have them.

Summer 2014

Once upon a time, I moved to Washington D.C. and lived in a crappy apartment where unwelcome fungi grew in the bathroom and where skype dates went to die because the internet was so crappy. For eight weeks, I hopped on the Red Line  at the Woodley Park metro station and rode the seven stops to Union Station, where I got off. I walked across the street to the National Postal Museum where I worked as the museum’s curatorial intern. On Fridays, I met up with my fellow museum intern, Phoebe, and we visited museums and geeked out about history instead of going into work. I roomed with four strangers who ended up being some of the best humans I’ve ever met. I walked the National Mall on a regular basis. I got some sweet deals at Smithsonian gift shops with a quick flash of my badge. I had the best sour cream cheesecake of my life. I fell in love with Baked and Wired. I went clubbing and lived to tell the tale. Every day, I was within walking distance of some of the nation’s most historic and symbolic places. How many twenty-one year old can say they have the Smithsonian on their resume, though? I had the most enriching summer of my life (so far), and I will never take that experience for granted.

My Staff

Gay Hall Staff 2014-2015. CAs who secretly aspire to be strippers. T-Swift all day, erry day. Repping that t-rex playing a ukulele like it’s nobody’s business.  Thanks for making me laugh at every staff meeting, for doing bomb-ass programs, for actually doing your jobs, and for making Gay Hall such a wonderful home for the Class of 2018 (and a few upperclassmen).

My Friends

They’re the best. Don’t know what I’d do without them. They know who they are. No need to say more.

Books

I don’t read enough during school, but I’m trying to get better at that because books make up a huge part of who I am. I am thankful that I have the ability to read whatever I want whenever I want. I am thankful that my parents never censored my reading materials growing up. In fact, they never even batted an eye at any of the books that I brought home from the book store. They trusted I was mature enough to be reading whatever the heck it was I was reading and they probably figured that if there was any mature content in those books (and oh, there was, much to my pre-pubescent wonder and surprise), such content was better learned from books than on the school playground. So, thanks Mom and Dad…you’re actually the best for that! As a college student, I am thankful for the the way my English major has given me a greater appreciation for the literature around me. I am thankful for all that I continue to learn from books. Books make the world a better place. End of story.

Food

I’m thankful that I don’t have to worry about having it when I realize that many others do. Even food from the dining hall (which has gotten rather tiring after four years) is better than no food at all. FOOD IS SO GOOD! I LOVE IT!

My health

Mental and Physical. I’m so thankful that I am healthy. Even though I’m stressed right now and not getting enough sleep, I realize it could be way worse because I’ve been at way worse.  Out of that darkness  came so much light. I learned so much. I am stronger. Life is beautiful and it will continue to go on.

And so ends my list of ten things that I am thankful for. I should probably go and be social with my family now and pick up my paper writing later.

Whether or not you live in a country where Thanksgiving is celebrated, I wish you a wonderful day.

What are you thankful for? 

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