Winter break is a joyous time to relax, de-stress, and watch an abundance of Netflix. Although winter break is a great way to catch up on all the much needed sleep you've missed throughout the semester, it also tends to lose it's charm after a while of being stuck at home. There are many stages to winter break, and they can happen in any order.
Popular Right Now
It’s become more and more apparent to me the effects of each year. When I was little the years used to just fly by. Of course, there were exciting parts about each such as the holidays, birthdays, graduations, etc., but as I have grown up I have started to notice more rewarding parts about each new year.
With every 365 days comes a new lesson. Looking back on this past year there have been many lessons I have learned whether the hard or easy way, but I am grateful for them all. I take my mistakes as opportunities to grow and my successes as humbling experiences to keep me motivated. All the ins and outs of this past year have made me a better human.
One of the biggest lessons I have learned this past year is that it is entirely okay to be on your own. I don't mean isolating yourself in a cold black room. I mean its okay to not be in a relationship, to not be surrounded by people 24/7, to not desire constant human attention. In fact, it can make you learn more about yourself and become a more independent individual. You will be able to survive if you are left alone for a few hours. You don't need a significant other to assure you that you are loved and worth something in this world. You don't need your friends to be constantly granting you social acceptance. You are enough.
I also learned that people change. The people around you, the people closest to you, and yourself. It is part of human nature to be constantly changing, to survive, and to adapt. All of which happens many times throughout a person’s life. You may have been into the Snooki poof in 8th grade but now you enjoy more tousled curls. You may have agreed with someone about politics before this election, but you no longer speak now. You may have outgrown people you used to place on a pedestal. No matter who or what changes around you, it is part of a greater plan and will be used to better you in a way unknown to you.
Speaking of plans, I’ve learned this past year that God has a much larger one than we may create for ourselves. It’s hard to trust that the trials and tribulations you experience are supposed to be a part of your journey, but with time you will learn that our lives aren’t ours. We live in accordance to a being who has a lot more in store for us than we could ever even dream of.
Thank you 2017 for schooling me in life. I can genuinely say you will be missed, but I am excited to see what 2018 has in store for me.
Having immigrant parents meant that not all of my family members live in the United States. My mom’s side of the family resides all over the place, Afghanistan, England, Germany, and Canada. While my dad’s side lived in the Bay Area. Because my mom’s family is nowhere near us, we traveled a lot.
The first time I went to Afghanistan, I was only a few months old and as I have gotten older I’ve made my way back a few more times. Being a kid and traveling is different than being a mature adult and traveling.
The last trip I took before going off to college was more of a learning experience than the others times I have gone.
If you have the chance to travel the summer before going off to college, or even a summer in between your college years, you should give it a shot. There is something about getting out of your comfort zone and experiencing new cultures.
It can be life-changing and a way to understand how others live their lives.
In a world where we often forget that other people exist outside of our personal circle, it can be revolutionary to see the life of others and be a part of their culture for a change. Whether you go to a well-off country, like England, or a third-world country, like Afghanistan, there is no doubt you will feel grateful and in awe of the different lifestyles that exist. Sometimes it can easy to forget that your world is not the only world that matters.
Because my mother’s family did not live in the United States, we traveled a lot. I have been introduced to so many different lifestyles that have shaped my view of the world.
Before heading off to college, my last trip helped me firmly set my core beliefs and what I stood for. Interacting with different lifestyles can help see and understand that there are other beliefs you may actually want to adopt.
The idea is, living in one place and not venturing out and trying to see new lifestyles prevents a person from understanding that there are other ways of looking at ideas. Sometimes it takes getting out of your comfort zone to realize and learn that the way you have been living life may not have been the right way or the best way of living.
If you can, travel. If you have the opportunity to see how another part of this big world functions, I would say give it a shot. I can’t promise you that your experience will be a heavenly one, traveling rarely goes well (you may get dropped off in the middle of a busy freeway in Saudi Arabia wishing you had an English to Arabic dictionary for help) but every experience is an experience worth having.