(Picture: Sierra after SimSoc Retreat, Taken October 10, 2010)
Finals are over and with them ends the first quarter of my college freshman year. I have learned a lot in just these ten weeks living in Sierra. I’ve learned about myself and the others around me, when to get involved and when to step out, when to help someone and when to know that people can learn more by helping themselves, and so much more.
I have almost an entire month off for vacation, which is a nice getaway from the craziness (the good kind, of course) that is college life. There are parties here, studying there, doing chores somewhere, and everything else on the side. It all took balance to have a somewhat control of it all. But in the midst of all of this, I learned how to be independent and not rely on my parents or anyone else for once. It was my responsibility to get up for class, do homework, wash and dry dishes, do my laundry, and take care of myself. But among all of these things, I’ve of course screwed up a few times. Nearly falling asleep in the class is not always the teachers fault. My laundry never did itself. And sometimes drying the dishes was a pain and I learned to deal with water stains.
The people in Sierra, my hall, are well—people. The theme being diversity is shown by all our different nationalities, ethnicities, cultures, foods, etc. We are different people with different backgrounds and stories. No two people in this world are the same. Some have dealt with more troubles, while others were more blessed. Some never learned to deal with the loss of someone and it still lingers in their minds, while others have learned to accept themselves for who they are. Some are blunt, others are shy. Some are comedians; others end up with the bad jokes that still get a laugh. Some party too hard, others have never been to a party in their lives. A lot are in the field of science and math and few in English and the arts. But all in all, though we are all different, we are also part of the same. We are in the same hall and we live together. So, even though we are different, we learn to respect everyone for those differences.
I’ve learned that I needed to respect someone else’s space because they are not as open as I was. That people can deceive. That I can seem condescending when under a lot of stress. That I am a social butterfly. That I can read people’s emotions in the hall really well after spending some time with them. I’ve learned to watch what I say because it might offend. To think before I act or say. To always give something a second thought. I’ve found that sometimes people get scared and have phobias. There is so much that I’ve learned in just these ten weeks and I can feel the growth that has happened to me physically, emotionally, and mentally. I have become a stronger person because of this choice even though there were good times and bad times, I still survived all of them regardless.
And as I write this now, I’m at my home in LA, just waiting to go back and experience some more.