Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Accepting Love

I saw this photo and text on Tumblr, and was intrigued by the underlying message that I can heavily relate to. As a person who has experienced debilitating self-consciousness, this saying reminds me of exactly how I felt, and sometimes still feel, about my self-worth. 

Over the years I've had a hard time getting close to people as fast as I deem to be normal. I'm a pro pessimist, always assuming people don't like me from the get go and I therefore have to prove something to them; that I'm worth it, that I'm not stupid, that I'm not dumb. I literally, perhaps unconsciously, discourage people from having a friendship with me because I feel as though I don't deserve their love and kindness.

is something I need to learn to accept and I need to learn to effectively distribute.

This photo I found on Tumblr was a great reminder of a fundamental trait I have that needs improvement. It seems easy, but I think it's going to take some practice. I want more than anything to shower my friends and family in love, but I've never been able to do it. I've always shied away, assumed they had better friends that love them, assumed I was annoying to them. I honestly thought I didn't deserve their love and kindness.

Writing it out like this makes the idea so pathetic.
It's bullshit.

I say
When it comes down to it, throw away the phrase on that photo. Burn it and bury it. Instead, believe that everyone deserves unlimited amounts of love, and everyone is capable of dishing out the same spectacular amount.

Love is limitless, and I want to take advantage of it.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Post-graduation weekend

I can't believe it's all over.
I have been waiting for this weekend for four years. I remember when 2012 seemed so far into the future, and sometimes I'm still in shock that it's already 2012.

Friday night we hung out at our apartment with a lot of friends, some in town only for the weekend, others that we were graduating with. It was wonderful socializing at our place over drinks and games. I had to force myself not to think about leaving everyone in less than a month, or else I would have become incredibly emotional.

Saturday I slept in late because I was in the afternoon commencement ceremony. I met briefly with my family, who arrived in town late Friday, and before I knew it I had to start getting dressed and putting on my cap and gown. Running late as we normally do, Zach, Tara and I got there just in time to get to the end of the School of Liberal Arts line to start filing in to Halenbeck gym, where everything was taking place. We sat in the very last row of the sea of graduates, shaking and chatting the whole time. The ceremony itself wasn't very memorable to me, but seeing myself and my friends in that cap and gown was definitely a memory I'll never forget. The symbolism of it will be with me forever. Because of our position in the gym, I was very close to my family; looking back at them every once and a while, and catching them smiling and looking at me, made me feel so fortunate, loved, and proud of my accomplishments. I truly was holding back a waterfall of emotions in those moments.

Walking up to the stage was nerve-wracking. I couldn't stop thinking about how to walk in heels because I didn't want to be the one to trip across the stage. Commencement coordinators rushed us along, as to not stall the already outrageously long ceremony. I remember stopping at the bottom of the stairs, and looking up at the bright lights shining on Zach, President Potter, the provost, and others whom we shook hands with. They ushered me up the stairs and I couldn't even hear my name; I was concentrating so hard on smiling, not tripping, and grabbing the diploma in the right hand! Just before I headed down the stairs and off the stage, one of my favorite professors, head of the Faculty Association, got out of his seat on stage to come shake my hand. Dr. Mark Jaede was one of the first professors I had at SCSU; he taught LAST 250, Introduction to Latin American Studies my first semester. He was someone who reassured me I wanted to continue with Spanish and learn about Latin America. The fact that he was there in the beginning, as well as there in the end of my college career, was so meaningful to me.

At the bottom of the stairs my friend Victor, a university ambassador, was helping usher graduates to the photo backdrop. I hugged him and scooted along; paused for my picture; and went back to our seats.

And it was over. So suddenly.
One moment I was on stage, my heart beating so hard and fast, the next second I was back in my seat, glancing at Zach and Tara with teary eyes.

We hung out in the gym and took some pictures with friends and family. Everything was overwhelming, of course. Pictures with the family, the roommates, the inlaws; all of us were pulled in all directions, smiling like fools!

Soon after we took off to get to Fuji Japanese Steakhouse for dinner. Zach's family and my family went together and we got hibachi (YUM!). It was hard for all of us to talk because the place was PACKED; probably with families of graduates. I think it went well, though. I just wish our families could have socialized more.

After everyone parted ways, I made plans to have breakfast/lunch with my family the next day and Zach and I headed home to get ready for a party at a house we used to live in. It was an amazing time being back there, reliving some of the memories made and spending time with dear friends (who I'm going to miss like hell). 

The next day Zach and I met my family at IHOP and we got to catch up a little bit (over delicious pancakes). They had to leave right after, and it was hard for all of us. Before this weekend, I hadn't seen them for a whole year, and we haven't been good at communicating since. The goodbye, at least for me, was very emotional. This might be the last time I see them for the next 2 years minimum, unless they come out to Seattle and visit or I manage to make enough money to head back to the midwest.

And that was that. It's all over. Felt like it lasted all of 2 minutes. 

So now our lives move on to other things, I suppose.

Recording the events of this weekend has been hard to do, mentally, because of the emotions involved. It's starting to hit me now, that my undergraduate experience is over. I don't know any other me besides the me that is in class at SCSU and heavily involved. What will I do now? I'm quite terrified of having to get to know a whole new campus, and whole new city. 

Moving to Seattle is still coming together. We have lots of apartments we're interested in, and of course we're still sending out lots of job applications. I just signed up for a summer course in my program, and I'm excited to meet people and knock down a few credits before fall. 

Oh, it's my birthday, today. I'm 22 now. Do I feel 22? No. When people ask me how old I am, I almost have to count it out in order to avoid saying 19 or 20. Has that much time really passed since high school? Since Chile? I guess so. Time has flown, and just like everyone says, it's moving exponentially faster as I get older. Today I went to the Mall of America with my friends Bretta, Di, and Tara and I'm stoked about the two dresses I bought. Going to go put one on for dinner tonight.

Until the next chapter...
(I hope my next blog post is about me or Zach getting a job or apartment)