What I'm Thankful For

What I'm Thankful For

Food, family, and fun - what more could you ask for?
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Thanksgiving has always been one of my absolute favorite times of the year. Aside from the over abundance of food from which I have the opportunity to gain 10 pounds in one sitting, there is family, laughter, and a joyfulness that doesn't seem to be found on most ordinary days. This happiness comes from Thanksgiving being the time to reminisce about what has been and what will be. I have always loved getting together with my cousins and exploring our memories about family vacations to Jamaica or to Cape Cod. We laugh until our abs ache and our eyes are crying. We look at family photos and poke fun at one another about our "ugly stages" and our odd hairstyles and outfit choices. It's times like those that I take the opportunity to look fondly upon my childhood and be thankful for having such a wonderful family.

Not only am I thankful for my family, but for my health. Our family has endured great sadness due to illness, and as much as we allow our hearts to be consumed by this sadness, we become ever more grateful for our ability to live our lives the way our deceased loved ones would have wanted. And this gratefulness gives us an optimistic outlook in all that we do and see, which is truly a blessing in itself. Thanksgiving gives us the chance to give thanks to those whom we miss who have impacted our lives so sincerely and in such a way that has made us all the people we find ourselves to be today.

In summation, I love Thanksgiving because it opens my eyes to all that I love. I could sit here and ramble about my gratefulness for being fortunate enough to go to an amazing university or simply to live in a home with a roof over my head and food to eat. And I am thankful for those things. But Thanksgiving also gives me the reassurance that even if I didn't have the luxury of an education or of a warm home or bed to sleep in, that I would be okay, because I always have my family to lean on. A crazy, idiotic, obnoxious, hilarious, wonderful, loving family whom I adore with all of my heart.

Cover Image Credit: http://halloween-art.com/wp-content/uploads/clipart/thanksgiving/Snoopy%20Thanksgiving%20Clip%20Art%20Free%20262074127316.jpg

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A Senior's Last Week Of High School

The bittersweet end.
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Well, this is it. This is what we've worked so hard the last four years - who am I kidding - basically what seems like our whole lives for. This is the very last week we will set foot as a student in our high school's hallways. As most schools are getting ready to set their seniors free at last, it all begins to set in - the excitement, the anxiousness, and also the sentiment and nostalgia.

For seniors, the years since our first day as a freshman at the bottom of the high school totem pole have seemed endless, but as we look back on these last few weeks, we realize that this year in particular has gone by extraordinarily fast. It was just yesterday that we were sitting in our classrooms for the very first time, going to our 'last first' practice, and getting our first taste of the (very real) "senioritis". With all that's going on in our lives right now, from sports and clubs, finals, and the sought after graduation ceremony, it's hard to really sit down and think about how our lives are all about to become drastically different. For some it's moving out, and for some it's just the thought of not seeing your best friend on the way to fourth period English; either way, the feels are real. We are all in a tug of war with the emotions going on inside of us; everything is changing - we're ready, but we're not.

THE GOOD. Our lives are about to begin! There is a constant whirlwind of excitement. Senior awards, getting out of school early, parties, and of course Graduation. We are about to be thrust into a world of all new things and new people. Calling our own shots and having the freedom we have so desperately desired since the teenage years began is right around the corner. Maybe the best part is being able to use these new things surrounding you to grow and open your mind and even your heart to ideas you never could before. We get the chance to sink or swim, become our own person, and really begin to find ourselves.

Things we don't even know yet are in the works with new people we haven't even met yet. These friendships we find will be the ones to last us a lifetime. The adventures we experience will transform into the advice we tell our own children and will become the old tales we pass down to our grandkids when they come to visit on the weekends. We will probably hate the all night study sessions, the intensity of finals week, and the overpowering stress and panic of school in general, just like we did in high school... But it will all be worth it for the memories we make that will outlive the stress of that paper due in that class you absolutely hate. As we leave high school, remember what all the parents, teachers, coaches, and mentors are telling you - this are the best times of our lives!

THE BAD. The sentimental emotions are setting in. We're crying, siblings are tearing up, and parents are full-out bawling. On that first day, we never expected the school year to speed by the way it did. Suddenly everything is coming to an end. Our favorite teachers aren't going to be down the hall anymore, our best friends probably won't share a class with us, we won't be coming home to eat dinner with our families...

We all said we wanted to get out of this place, we couldn't wait, we were ready to be on our own; we all said we wouldn't be "so emotional" when the time came, but yet here we are, wishing we could play one more football game with our team or taking the time to make sure we remember the class we liked the most or the person that has made us laugh even when we were so stressed we could cry these past few years. Take the time to hug your parents these last few months. Memorize the facial expressions of your little sister or brother. Remember the sound of your dad coming home from work. These little things we take for granted every day will soon just be the things we tell our college roommate when they ask about where we're from. As much as we've wanted to get out of our house and our school, we never thought it would break our heart as much as it did. We are all beginning to realize that everything we have is about to be gone.

Growing up is scary, but it can also be fun. As we take the last few steps in the hallways of our school, take it all in. Remember, it's okay to be happy; it's okay to be totally excited. But also remember it's okay to be sad. It's okay to be sentimental. It's okay to be scared, too. It's okay to feel all these confusing emotions that we are feeling. The best thing about the bittersweet end to our high school years is that we are finally slowing down our busy lives enough to remember the happy memories.

Try not to get annoyed when your mom starts showing your baby pictures to everyone she sees, or when your dad starts getting aggravated when you talk about moving out and into your new dorm. They're coping with the same emotions we are. Walk through the halls remembering the classes you loved and the classes you hated. Think of the all great times that have happened in our high school years and the friends that have been made that will never be forgotten. We all say we hated school, but we really didn't. Everything is about to change; that's a happy thing, and a sad thing. We all just have to embrace it! We're ready, but we're not...

Cover Image Credit: Facebook

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Being Close To Your Cousins Is The Best Thing That Can Happen To You

Who needs therapists when you have cousins like mine?

Ipsita
Ipsita
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My cousins bring out the best in me. When I'm with them, I am happier. They have played a significant role in shaping my mind and my soul. My cousins are the most meaningful people in my life—my life would be incomplete without them. Here are six reasons why cousins are awesome!

1. They help you define yourself 

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My cousins know me inside out. When I find myself in situations where a choice has to be made, be it choosing my career or just another pizza, my cousins have helped me choose—they know me so well! There have been times when my cousins knew things about me that I myself didn't know. It's always good to see yourself through others' eyes, and no one can get as real as your cousins.

2. They inspire you 

mr-krabs-and-squidward-inspired

Dance is something that I feel I was destined to do. It is one hobby I could never give up. My childhood is marked with memories of my cousin Rishabh and I going crazy to Bollywood songs. His passion and energy acted as my fuel. It is with him that I discovered the dancer hidden within me. His love for dance continues to inspire me each day.

3. They are there for you, no matter what 

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My cousins have always been there for me, through thick and thin. They have helped me understand and control my emotions. Who needs therapists when you have cousins like mine?

4. You learn so much from them 

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My cousin Shivam formed the image of an ideal elder brother in my life. He always stood with what was right and fought against the wrong. I look up to him because in him I see someone who is wise way beyond his years. I see a nurturing, supportive, patient man who is aware of his words and actions. Being the eldest of us all, he made sure we felt happy and safe. From him, I have learned the importance of selfless love, humility, and of always being right. Growing up with these amazing people that I call my cousins, I learned new things every day.

5. They understand you 

crazy

They were there through the hair color phase, the nose ring phase, the Taylor Swift phase, and they never judged you.

6. They're like parents, but cooler 

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When you make a mistake, they will correct you. When you cross the line, they will put you back in your place. But when you want to go out partying, they'll also help you pick an outfit!

Cousins are a blessing in disguise. And if you have cousins like mine, oh boy, you must be lucky! My cousins make the challenging path toward adulthood worth walking. They make life worth living. And as we part ways and move into different cities, our hearts will always be together and their lessons always with me.
Ipsita
Ipsita

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