It’s not often that you hear something that totally changes your perception of life and relationships at 4:00 in the morning. Today, however was one of those days.
When I first arrived at Freed-Hardeman University one year ago, I honestly hated it here. To me, the dorms seemed old and neglected, the food seemed of less than desirable quality, and the people seemed, for the most part, fake and overly self-rightetous. However, my perception totally changed about a month later when I decided to join Sigma Rho, one of several coed fraternity/sororities that Freed calls “social clubs.” In Sig I found kindred spirits and, more importantly, real people. One of the first friends I made in the club was my “big brother,” Danger.
Upon first glance, Danger might not seem like an overly impressive person. Standing 5’9” and weighing not an ounce more than 150 pounds, his size cannot begin to attest to his strong will and uncommon wisdom. Throughout my first year at Freed, Danger voluntarily served as my brother, mentor, accomplice, and friend, but it was not until tonight that I began to see that he had more to teach me than just how to make friends or stay out of trouble.
Tonight, in the middle of an uncharacteristically deep discussion about life, Danger looked me in the eye and said, “When it comes down to it, all you really have in life is your friends and your family, and when it gets right down to it, your friends can bail on you. The most important thing you have in this life is your family.” This statement really hit home with me, because, as of late, I feel like I’ve taken my family for granted. I was so looking forward to getting away from home and moving back to school, that I forgot how lucky that I was to have a family to go home to in the summer at all.
I honestly hope that all of you are lucky enough to have a friend like Danger, who’s experienced life and who truly recognizes what’s important; because, honestly, we all need to be reminded sometime of how fortunate we really are to have people who care about us and support us unconditionally. So, I would like to say that I love my mother, my father, and my sister with all my heart, and would do anything for them, and I love my big brother, Danger, too. When it comes down to it, all we really have in this life is family.
It’s still surreal to me to think that I’m a sophomore.
I just moved back into my dorm room today, and already the differences from last semester glare at me from all directions. Between all the new faces, new rules, and changes to the campus facilities, I almost feel like I’ve enrolled in a completely new school.
However, even though the faces may change, and the school may change, nothing really changes. The friends who we’ve lost due to academic or monetary issues will soon be replaced by freshman who fit their niche. It’s not that we actively seek this change, or even that we approve of it, that’s just the way it is.
It’s funny how everything has a way of balancing itself out. And so, another year begins. So much is different, but, overall, it still feels like home.
I’m awake, immutably, unwaveringly awake; sentenced to yet another restless night of tossing and turning, replaying the days events over and over in my mind, and hoping that, against all odds, I’ll soon awake from a deep, restful sleep to find the sun beginning to stream through the drapes of my room. But sleep is a strange quarry. The more you chase after it, the further it recedes from you, and actively pursuing it can only lead to it eluding you yet again. It is only when you let sleep come to you that it will allow itself to be captured.
In this way, sleep is a lot like many of the things that we fret over in life. Isn’t it odd how looking forward to an event in the near future can make time feel like it is drastically slowing down? In a more applicable sense, does worrying about situations over which you have no control make those situations any more manageable? The most difficult things for us to learn to master are our minds. “And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature one cubit? If ye then be not able to do even that which is least, why take ye thought for the rest?”
Therefore, I will take no more thought for the rest, by literally taking no more thought for the rest (pun intended). G’night, all.