April 10, 2019

Personal

Life has been CRAZY over the last few weeks, so I must start this post with a huge apology for not posting too much. To be honest, even though so much is going on, I’ve never been happier. Although my life is basically centred around grad school, I also work 30 hours a week. And through the inevitable chaos that arises from that, so many good things should also be acknowledged. 

School

Yes, I’m starting with school, shocker! Aside from obtaining a placement, one of my favourite professors said yes to supervising my thesis. After presenting to my class for a separate assignment, this same professor made a point to come up to me and compliment my presentation style. This prof, who is literally one of the nicest, most accomplished, and inspirational persons I have ever encountered came up to ME and said all these positive and nice things to me and about me. I didn’t see her do that to any other student. Considering she is who I aspire to be, I was internally screaming all while saying “thank you so much” oh so calmly. 

Family

I can’t remember if I posted about this, but we recently celebrated my grandfathers 90thbirthday. This is such a huge blessing. My grandfather is the funniest little old man and I can’t imagine a world without him. I also just recently celebrated my younger brothers’ birthday. Its strange to see how I’ve grown to become so protective of him, because I never thought I’d be this way. I actually find myself wanting to spend more time with him, even if its just going into his room and bothering him for a few minutes.But I’ve also come to recognize that my family isn’t just restricted to relatives.  My classmates have truly become my family as well. While I am privileged to know them all, there’s a handful that mean a bit more to me. Specifically, there’s a group of us and we all just click in ways that reflect a familial dynamic.  I have their back in the same way that I know they have mine, I’ve seen it unfold already. It’s a beautiful 

Relationships/Friends

I can’t even think about my boyfriend without getting all smiley and blushy and goofy. He makes me so unconditionally happy, it’s a foreign feeling. I’ve never introduced a guy to my parents before because I didn’t know if it was worth it, but he is. He’s worth it to me. So I’m trying to figure out a day where he can come over and he also just invited me to his house for Easter to meet his parents and extended family. I was previously friends with his sister before me and him knew each other, so its really nice to know a member of his family already. We also have an anniversary coming up in a few days…exciting! 

Speaking of friendships, I have to shout out specific friendships that have kept me sane throughout the chaos that was the last few weeks. Chantal is a literal saviour, we already know this. She is the first person to offer support when I’m freaking out about literally anything. Alessia, who also happens to be my boyfriend’s sister, is a literal angel. We clicked right away when we first met, but now our friendship is so much more solid. She is so encouraging, honest, and real, its hard to find people like that these days.  One of my closest friends is officially moving to the U.S. in May. We might not see each other allll the time, but it’s still hard. This is a girl that has played a significant role in my life, but I’m so happy that she’s starting a new chapter in her own adventure and going after what she loves. Surprise goodbye party? I think so. 

Random Things 

Well, I’m getting two tattoos on Friday. My mom wasn’t too happy about that, but my dad still has no idea. I also got premiere tickets to see Avengers: Endgame!! So Thursday April 25, I will be gluing myself to a seat in the movie theatre (not literally), and my eyes will be blessed for 3 hours. I’m seeing Cher this month with my dad, yes I’m actually very excited for that…don’t judge me. 

I feel like there’s more I want to share, but I can’t think of it right now. Anyways, I hope you all have a great rest of your week!  

When Strangers Turn into Friends

Personal

Objective of the week: complete a 4 day intensive graduate course with incoming students I have never met.

This week, I was placed in a room with 21 strangers. Imagine looking out into a sea of faces that are already all so familiar with each other and just feeling isolated. That was me on Monday. I thought to myself, these aren’t my regular classmates, and I’ll barely ever see them again, so do I really need to talk to these people? Just get through the week and you’ll be fine.

Looking back at it, those were premature thoughts that just projected my own insecurities. I didn’t give anyone a chance and made judgement calls right away. I automatically thought that because I was a semester ahead of these people, I wouldn’t be making or maintaining any friendships.

The fact is, this past week has granted me the opportunity to meet so many kind and generous souls. Due to confidentiality, I cannot go into depth about what events unfolded, but what I can tell you is that each and every person in this class has allowed me to see the world in different ways.

I was able to see the world through different cultural, creative, and professional lenses. I was enticed to self-reflect and see where I, as a person, can improve myself. But most importantly, I was given the opportunity to really know people- not their likes and dislikes- but rather their most guarded selves. This act alone is very intimate and sacred.

Being able to hear and see people be so vulnerable with each other is a gift. It’s not something that comes easy or is just expected, but it is something to be cherished when it occurs. I know that for me, being vulnerable is very rare and only happens with those I feel comfortable with. So when someone was vulnerable with me, I always tried to thank them for their bravery.

Earlier this week, we had to take a test that would indicate our own personal strengths. Mine included:

  • Kindness & generosity
  • Honesty, authenticity, & genuineness
  • Humour & playfulness
  • Social intelligene
  • Citizenship, teamwork, and loyalty

Each student was expected to grab a large sheet of people and write down these strengths. After doing so, we were told to go around the room and sign everyones sheet. There was no particular way to sign, meaning we could either write our names or even add a little message. I wasn’t expecting much to be honest. Of course I made friendships, but I did’t expect anyone to write anything for someone that wasn’t going to be in their future classes. I was beyond surprised at the beautiful heartfelt messages that were left on my paper. I have never felt more appreciative for a group of people in my life, besides my own cohort. After reading their messages I realized.. not only did I see their true nature, but they also saw mine.

At the end of the four days, it was actually really difficult to leave these kind hearts and my new found friendships. I exchanged numbers and socials with a lot of people. I found out that a few students also live near me, and we all made plans to stay in touch and get together at times. It was so nice to hear people say how much they would miss me, or how much they wished I was in their class permanently.

The moral of the story? Try not to have preconceived notions about something. Sometimes having a judgement can really mess up great opportunities and friendships that would otherwise not reach their full potential. I am so happy that I was able to break out of my old thoughts and embrace all of those around me. Go into things with an open mind and endless positivity. The world can be a great place if you just be receptive to the good things around you. I can gladly say that I have easily made some good friends for life.

Although that class finished yesterday, I have an 8 a.m. course to get to this lovely Saturday morning. And even though I miss the group of new students, I can’t wait to see my own cohort. It’s been almost a month since I saw them last because of the holiday break. For my group, it’s like people who were once strangers in a crowded room waiting for their professional life to start, have now become a family.