PURPLE RAIN!

PURPLE RAIN!

Run Free: For that something New!
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College! College! College! Those thousands of hours, those hundreds of days, and few years that flew by yet changed you and are here then gone. Yes, they are! The days you are there for class but stuck in your car from anxiety and can't get out, or simply late, or can't get out of bed, The days your two and three hours early for class, or even the all-nighters and so on. The days you pass the days you fail or as they say "win some and lose some!" The days you cry, cry and cry! The days you say you will quit! The days you question everything, yourself, your intelligence and very basic, knowledge. The days of utter darkness and depression, of what it all comes down to, and where you think it ends! Where you say, you will give up, and not just in school! The days that come out of nowhere literally, the ones you do not see coming, and the ones that you do, the things that you wished for that finally do. The days you need somebody, the days you lose someone and the days you find and lose yourself. The days you explore and find new things. The days you have to stop and take a step back, and the days you get to start again. The days your eyes are open, and the days your eyes are closed. The days of comparison the days of procrastination, the days of absolute zero sleep. The days of self-loathing, the days of $1, or negative $1, and the days of no gas and not just in regards to mindset. The days of I will not, I cannot, I should not, Oh I"ll be back in time. The days of "I am going to fail," but you do not somehow. Thank God for extra credit because it deserves its own sentence. Syllabus week? Oh and the classes where your point something away from that needed grade. Not one point, or even half a point so, "blah, blah, merely, merely, up does not my GPA!" The days of refresh, freeze and, 11:59. The days of past due, due, and extensions. The days of I love my teacher, I really dislike my teacher and, umm who exactly is my teacher. The Days of No class, when is the class, * we had class! The days of Mom, and Mom and Mom and well I love you too Dad! The days of regret, and to be forgotten or vice-versa remembered. The days of kindness, the days of forgiveness, and meeting new faces. The days you think, you will not be friends, but they become your best friend! The days of rush, the days of tests, the days of work, game days and final testing days all leading to the countdown, and days to do it all again. These are the days, the college days, embraced and endured, that do not even begin to describe what college is really like!

These are the days that prepare us for life, and in the wise words of Taylor Swift "The tricky thing is yesterday we were just children playing soldiers, just pretending, dreaming dreams with happy endings, in backyards, winning battles with our wooden swords, but now we've stepped into a cruel world, where everybody stands and keeps score.” (Taylor Swift) This is true we were getting silver stars on report cards with smiley face stickers that could smell! Oh, and do not forget the participation awards. Yet, "Here you are, two steps ahead and staying on guard. Every lesson forms a new scar. They never thought you'd make it this far but turn around. Oh they've surrounded you. It's a showdown, and nobody comes to save you now. But you've got something they don't... You've just gotta keep your eyes open.” (Taylor Swift) Now, there are high expectations, and it is a cruel world. Therefore, we cannot fear the unknown. We must use it as fuel to wander and find adventure. Use it as an opportunity to find yourself. To learn, experience, and find your dreams. Always take it step by step. Let the ground shake and roar, and embrace where you are, and the heavy steps it takes to get there. You deserve freedom, and you deserve life. Live. Learn. Repeat. Don’t get lost in the dark of heart or, too high to see the truth. Somehow, somewhere, solid ground will be found. Above all, keep fighting because somehow, someway I must know, you must know, all should know, we are not alone.

For suddenly one day you will run behind that college building in your heels, with a board in your hand that dangles with a tassel, and you wonder why after all that's been endured just a flying board and paper are in your hand. Just kidding! But really it should be a crown and gold paper! But you will run behind the building kneel down and look up to the sky and thank the one who made that sky, and for a moment sit in awe, and that bittersweet moment will bring tears to your eyes! Because YOU will know what you did and what you endured and sacrificed! The things that people saw and the things that people did not see that overall took you to get there will finally have paid off! People may say, "Oh it is school, and sure it is challenging, but you will get through it.” Yet, it is not even remotely, what is reflected on the paper or even what is reflected on the school emblem that matters all those years. Yet, what is reflected in your step! Most importantly, when you get up and leave, you are closing that chapter and realizing you are a different person. You must follow your heart and see where it takes you! Do not let this world outside break you or suck you in for they know not who you are. Know that new things are to be explored, and as you are moving on your dreams must never die! And to those who are graduating as PRINCE so magically states

I know times are changing

It's time we all reach out

For something new!

-Thank You so very much, To my beloved Parents, Mom, Dad, Paul, Steph and Jer, my family, friends, teachers, mentors and those along the way old and new that helped me on this road this journey! You are vital, and know who you are!

Finally- Alina R: Mathew 17:20

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If South Carolina Colleges Were Characters From 'The Office'

Who's Jim and who's Meredith?
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"The Office" is one of the best shows on the face of the planet. Don't believe me, you obviously haven't watched it. It has a character for everything, including all of the South Carolina colleges.

The Citadel

This one is probably the easiest. Creed Bratton. Hands down. Military all day every day. No one knows what really goes on behind closed doors, except the people there. Just like Creed's mind.

Coastal Carolina University

Consistently voted one of the top party schools in the nation. #It'snotcollegeit'sCoastal.

Winthrop University

Winthrop is the place for future teachers. We all know that Meredith is the mother/teacher figure in the office, which is kind of scary in and of itself.

Columbia College

Erin just seems like the type of person who would go to an all-female college.

Bob Jones University

At what other school do you see people wearing things that could be from the American Girl large colonial dolls Spring line?

Wofford College

The pearls, Greek Life, and Southern fashion are so real.

Furman University

Let's be real. Pam is a bit of a nerd. But at the end of the day, she does know how to get down. I mean she WAS on the party planning committee. And who doesn't want that Ring By Spring?

College of Charleston

Nard Dog is definitely in an a capella group in Charleston, taking in the city and the history while dressing like a frat star.

Medical University of South Carolina

Andy isn't alone in Charleston. Dwight is down there becoming a doctor. Yes, someone who can save lives and is able to do surgery. Although, who else would you expect to be a doctor?

University of South Carolina

There would be no South Carolina without the University of South Carolina. There would be no office without Michael Scott. The later seasons prove it. They're large and in charge.

Clemson University

While Michael thinks that he runs the office, it's no secret that Jim is the mastermind behind the operation. The office would fall apart without him. I'll just let that sit.

Cover Image Credit: YouTube

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Your Brain Is More Than A Bag of Chemicals

In David Anderson's 2013 Ted Talk, the Caltech professor discusses the downfalls of mental healthcare in our society, opening a discussion to wider societal issues.

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David Anderson, in his Ted Talk "Your Brain is Not a Bag of Chemicals" dives into the world of treatment for psychiatric illnesses, of scientific research, and of fruit flies. His goal, to explain the flaws in current treatments of mental illnesses and present how this downfalls could be resolved is clear throughout the talk. Through presenting his research, and speaking of novel contributions such as the actual discovery of emotion in fruit flies, Anderson displays the flaws in mental healthcare and demands more of the scientific world to resolve these downfalls.

As Anderson explains, the traditional view of mental illnesses is that they are a chemical imbalance in the brain. He states, "As if the brain were some kind of bag of chemical soup filled with dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine." He explains the difference for typical treatments of physical ailments versus psychological ailments. As he describes it, physical ailments presented to a physician will lead to blood tests, biological assays, and various other factors to gather information about what is going on in the body so that a treatment plan can be well-suited to that issue. However, for psychological problems, the patient is often handed a questionnaire to assess the issues. These questionnaires, as he suggests, are insufficient in understanding the complexities that surround mental illnesses.

Of medication prescribed for mental illnesses, Anderson states, "These drugs have so many side effects because using them to treat a complex psychiatric disorder is a bit like trying to change your engine oil by opening a can and pouring it all over the engine block. Some of it will dribble into the right place, but a lot of it will do more harm than good." Anderson uses the example of dopamine and the model organism of fruit flies to explain this concept. He explains how in certain illnesses, such as ADHD, there is not a complete understanding of why there are features of learning disabilities and hyperactivity. Without this understanding, the treatment of just increasing the amount of dopamine in one's system is lacking.

Anderson suggests that pharmaceutical companies and scientists should do more research to not only discover the disturbances of neural pathways, which tend to be the real cause of mental illnesses, but to also develop new medications that attempt to resolve these specific pathways and specific receptors, rather than simply increasing the amount of a certain neurochemical. These new medications could and do revolutionize the way that mental illnesses are treated, and the efficacy in their treatment.

As a society, there is a general view of mental illnesses that varies greatly from the view of physical illnesses. Anderson, without directly discussing it, acknowledges this exact problem. He discusses the differences in treatments, but also the lack of resources that are put in to truly understand how to better treat mental illnesses as disturbances in neurophysiological components. Without, as a society, acknowledging and respecting mental illnesses for what they are, we are short-changing the 25% of the world who is directly impacted by these illnesses, and the countless loved ones who stand by those impacted. A shift needs to occur, and the research and ideas that Anderson presents are a wonderful scientific starting point for these shifts. However, if we as a society do not support the principles behind this science, do not support the concept that mental illness is much more than just being a little emotionally reactive, we are doing a disservice to the majority of the population.

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