Saturday, April 21, 2012

Don’t let school define you

2012-04-17 22.45.40
Couple of days ago I was talking to a stranger at an outdoor concert. She asked if I play any instruments. “I used to play the flute and the piano.” I said without thinking, “until I came to college and my priorities got a little messed up.” She asked “Then what did you put first?” I said “Classes.”

She and I pondered on my answer for a bit.

I feel I lost much of my identity in college. The hobbies I loved and enjoyed in high school- reading, painting, swimming- were pushed aside to make room for academics. And because I was at Rice where the library is open for all-nighters, I focused on classes and built my identity around academics (and derived much of my self-worth from grades).

I don’t want to drown in academics all the time that I lose sight of myself. Being in dental school should not define me. It should be something I do, not something I am. I want to take time to stop and smell the flowers.

(Are these not the most beautiful flowers you’ve ever seen? N-cakes remembered my love for sunflowers and brought these for me this week.)

2012-04-19 21.40.04
But I am such a goody-goody and I do love school. Will you keep an eye out for Yesle the person (not Yesle-who-lives-in-the-library)?

In line with this philosophy, I put together a list of “25 before 25”, twenty-five tasks I want to accomplish before I turn twenty-five (I will write about these before Monday). These are selfish personal goals, but I hope these will motivate me to get up from my desk and live a little. Because I don’t know who I will be, but I don’t want to be a student and nothing else.

Does anyone else feel this way about becoming what you do?
Who are you? What defines you?

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