I'm Taking A Hiatus From Odyssey

I'm Taking A Hiatus From Odyssey

Kind of like the Hamilton song
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Dear everyone who has supported me along the way,

As sad as it is to say, this is my last Odyssey article for awhile. I am truly grateful for the people who have watched me grow along the way, but I have decided to take a hiatus.

This summer, I will re-evaulate my life, my relationships, and where I stand as a writer. In the fall, if things work out the way that they are supposed to, I will come back, and I will come back stronger than before.

The reason for this hiatus is not only because of a rift in my life, but with Southern Miss. A few months back, I wrote an article, "35 Questions I Have For Southern Miss." It was then that I realized that my articles are a representation of my university. While originally intended to be a lighthearted piece, it polarized people. I did not mean for that to happen, but it did. It showed the effects of my writing and how it can have different meanings to different people.

I know that we all have different opinions, and I tend to joke about other people's opinions. Maybe it is my maturity level that seeps through, but I never mean to hurt people when I joke. I'll take a note from Kathy Griffin, Chelsea Handler and Joan Rivers in not apologizing, but I do mean no harm in the occasional terrible joke.

Drama in college should be limited to the walls of the theatre department. I was not prepared for the drama to come out of the past few weeks. It's petty, it's immature, and it makes those involved look like hypocrites. In a community where people pride themselves on being "petty queens," where does the drama stop? The simple fact is that I know I have hurt people in the past, and it eats me up inside. The constant "you are (insert here) because (insert here)" has got to stop. If not for my sake, for the sake of holding communities together.

Writing has always been my salvation. In the past few months, I did not feel like I was able to express my opinions because I was worried about what others might think. This is where my hiatus project comes into play. I have decided to create a blog where I can get a fresh start and hopefully reinvent myself. Establishing myself not as a person, but as a brand, is essential for me to move forward in my personal aspirations.

I have written before that I am a complicated person. I know that I can be hard to handle and deal with. I want to take this summer to figure myself out. Hopefully, as stated before, I can come back in the fall a stronger, better writer with a whole new fire ignited under my buttocks.

Thank you to everyone who has read, shared, and supported me along the way. The support and shares mean the world. I love you all.

Thanks for being the best,

Emily Rasch


Cover Image Credit: YouTube

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An Open Letter to the Best Friend I Didn't See Coming

Some people come into your life and change you forever—thanks, bestie.
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Dear best friend,

I wasn't expecting you when God placed you in my life. I had my friends. I had my people. I wasn't exactly open to the idea of new meaningful friendships because I had the ones I needed, and it didn't seem like I really needed anybody new.

Thank God that was false. Sometimes you meet people and you just know that you're going to be good friends with. Sometimes you meet people and you realize that there is no such thing as chance. I think God has a funny way of making it seem as if the things that happen to us are by chance, but honestly, that’s a load of crap. If the biggest moments of our lives were left up to chance, then I believe that would make God out to seem as if he didn’t care. It would make it seem as if He was truly abandoning me and making me face some of my most important seasons fully isolated. But you, best friend, are a true testament to the fact that God doesn’t just leave such important aspects up to chance. Thank you for taking a chance on our friendship, and thank you for allowing me to take a chance on what I didn’t realize would be the most impactful friendship in my entire life.

Thank you for being real with me. Thank you for not sugar coating things. Thank you for telling me when I have a bad attitude. Thank you for loving me through my mistakes. Thank you for supporting me in my decisions, even if it isn’t always the decision you would make. Thank you for wanting the best for me, and for making that your true intent behind the words that you say to me, whether they be constructive criticism or encouragement.

Thank you for being a goof with me. Thank you for putting me first. Thank you for seeing the importance of our friendship. Thank you for making time in your schedule for us to just sit and do homework, eat Mexican food, or sit on the porch and listen to music that emotionally wrecks you.

You’re one of a kind. You’re a shoulder to lean on. You’re a safe place. You’re a free spirit. You’re rough and tough, but your heart melts for the people you love and it’s obvious. You’re more than meets the eye. You are worth getting to know. You are worth loving. You pursue people. You are passionate about your future. You are everything that a person needs, and I really thank God that for some reason you continue to choose to be in my life. Thank you for literally dragging me up my mountains of fear when I want to stay exactly where I am at and wallow in the sadness. You bring joy—true joy—wherever you go. You are my best friend, confidant, and biggest fan. You will be the Maid of Honor, Godmother, and fun Aunt.

I used to think lifelong friendships weren’t really a thing. It just seemed like people always grew apart and forever was never a point that was attainable. Best friends forever is a cliché phrase that is continuously overused nowadays (sometimes, I even used to make light of it), but thanks for making that a reality. You are truly the best friend I could have asked for. So thank you for it all. You make life more fun, and I couldn’t thank God more for making an incredible human, friends with me.

I love you, pal!

JQ

Cover Image Credit: Julia Dee Qualls

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To my inspiring best friend

I hope you know that just as you've always been one of my biggest supporters, I will always be one of yours.

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Dear Patience,

You are, without a doubt, the kindest person I have ever met. You are one of those people who has the remarkable ability to see the good in everyone, the potential in everything, the light in every darkness. You are someone who is just genuinely joyful, even when it's hard to be, and I admire you for that.

I've been trying to pinpoint the moment when you became one of my best friends, and I think it must have happened sometime our Junior year of high school. We had always run in similar circles, but I think we had a conversation about a book or a movie and from that point on, we were kindred spirits.

Your devotion to art, especially animation, really inspired me to fully embrace my own creativity. I had always written stories for my own enjoyment, but it wasn't until I shared some with you that I realized I wanted to be a writer for the rest of my life. Your creative opinions are more valuable to me thank you could know; that's probably why I tell you about every little idea I have.

Beyond that, though, I feel like I get to be the best version of myself when I'm your friend. I get to be kind and creative, and I never have to fear judgement. I know that if I come to you with even the saddest feeling, you'll offer some bright perspective that turns even the most oppressive obstacle into an opportunity for growth. Also, I know that I can always find a fellow fangirl in you; even if you don't like the book/show/movie as much as I do, you'll find some way to encourage my enthusiasm, and I think that's just grand.

I hope you know that just as you've always been one of my biggest supporters, I will always be one of yours.

— Ashley

Cover Image Credit:

Lotta Gessner

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