CHPers: Welcome back!
As I sit here in my room, the day before the start of yet another quarter, I wonder what to write about. So many things have happened these last three weeks, providing fodder for my unending desire to try to will about change in today’s society on issues ranging from education, to political gridlock, to violence. I could ponder why the mass shootings in CT occurred and blast the government for being puppets of the NRA. I could lament over the death of the girl who was beaten and gang raped in New Delhi. I could try my best, as a Chemist, to examine the constant political gridlock that had the world’s markets on edge as congress marched toward the fiscal cliff doing the same-old political posturing we’ve gotten sick of. I could go off again on how California, though Prop 30 was passed, still needs to put a greater importance on funding education here; though a California teaching credential can land you a job in any state due to its rigor, we’re ranked 47th in per-pupil spending by some sources.
But instead, something else pulled at my heart more than any of the above. Even though I have a draft stored for a post on gun violence, I think we should take a break and examine, in the midst of all of this negative news, the brighter side of humanity. Yes, we have a brighter side, and no, it’s not gone yet. This is going to sound cheesy, but it’s love. Bear with me here, as I will elaborate.
For me, I’ll be honest, I had a hard time willingly coming back to UCI after a three week break at home. Not only was I fed very well by my mom (I gained back all the weight I lost this quarter haha) but I also got to see really good friends of mine back home, catch up with them, and spend quality time with my family, without the worries and distraction of school. Caring for each other, talking to one another, playing games with each other and cooking together made me happy. Made me content. And I realized that even though I live in Irvine now, I will still call NorCal my home. As I left NorCal and began the long drive back to UCI, I teared up seeing my parents in my rear view mirror watching me leave. Now, I said to myself, I’m back on my own, I’m not going to see my parents for awhile, and I’m going to miss being able to be quirky, crazy, and sometimes just plain weird around close friends back at home.
When I think about everything that’s happened this break, I also realize though that I am very blessed. Blessed to have a family that loves (Greek: storge) me, blessed to have friends who love (philia) me, blessed to believe in a God that loves (agape) me. Without going on a discourse about the inadequacy of the english word love and how there are multiple words in Greek to describe the word, what I wanted to say is that I hope all of you were able to receive some form of love and care this holiday season. I hope that all of you were refreshed over break and are now ready to take on the quarter. Because however much Americans like to believe that if we have a strong work ethic, we can take on anything. But without love, I don’t think we can’t make it. There’s no support, and no encouragement for the times when we need it.
So to end, show love to family, old friends, new friends, and even complete strangers, because who knows who might be needing some that day? Doing random acts of kindness to those you know or don’t know will buoy your spirits too. For though the holiday season is over, there’s no reason we should stop remembering those who gave us strength, and those who need our support.