Posted by Dominique D. | Posted on November 30, 2011
In the spirit of the post Thanksgiving season, I thought I’d post a reflection type thing.
As the title says, I am thankful each day for all that I have here at Hopkins.
-For every single person who has been there for me in a big or small, short term or long term way.
-Every opportunity that comes my way that I get, and those that I don’t.
-For every single struggle I’ve had, because they’ve matured and prepared me.
I won’t lie; this was the first Thanksgiving break I think I was actually excited to go home for. Because I live in Baltimore, I usually find myself yearning to come back to school to be around my friends and the hustle and bustle of campus life. So I think that means I’m getting old, right? Or maybe just more thankful for my family and all the support its given me. I remember going through the application process as a high school senior. My mom pegged me the ‘guinea pig’ because I was her first child going to school. I had folders and everything…and she was basically the one who made me turn my stuff in not last minute and the one who was just like FOR GOODNESS SAKES DOMINIQUE CHOOSE A SCHOOL ALREADY! haha. My family has been my number one cheerleader since I entered, whether I get good grades or disappointing ones. My family is awesome because there’s no added pressure. If I get a bad grade in a class, it’s ok because I’ve tried my hardest. I’ve realized that not all families have that point of view so for that I am soooo thankful.
My friends have been amazing during my time here. I would hate school if I didn’t have them. Classes could be amazing, I could have all the internships in the world, but if I didn’t have honest, loving, supportive friends through it all, I wouldn’t be the same. They are here whenever I need them–for instance, I needed them last night to talk while I was on RA duty (whohoo) and they came right over. Getting advice and perspective from peers my age has been invaluable, and for that I am thankful.
Professors are cool too. I can honestly say that I’ve had a couple of bad professors my time here, but the VAST MAJORITY, as in all but 3 or 4 or 2 or something like that (hey I’m gettin’ old bear with me :P ) have been stellar. In math and science and humanities and social sciences. I’m thankful for all of them, and especially the ones I’ve been able to get to know on a more personal level because they really do have a lot to offer. And most of them aren’t old and stuffy either–I know a few who are crazier than I could ever be!
With regard to opportunities, they come. Being at a place like Hopkins puts you in high demand for internships and jobs and research positions. But that doesn’t mean rejection doesn’t happen. Since I’ve been here, I’ve had 2 amazing (PAID!) internships for public health during the summer and severallllll jobs. And many students exceed this by having more internships and research and med school shadowing above that. I still talk to both of my supervisors from my internships because that’s how cool we were. Besides jobs and internships, the opportunities for leadership and involvement are STELLAR HERE AS IN YOU CAN’T DO IT ALL OMGEE. I’ve gotten several rejections from stuff and while I was upset back then, I’m ultimately thankful because I ended up 1. Learning how to deal with it (important, as I am applying to jobs and/or grad schools now) and 2. Loving other things. So welcome it when it happens! Not getting chosen for something needs to have less of a stigma on it. As you submit your applications this season, know that there are many factors that go into being chosen for a school and that if /when rejection happens, don’t sweat it. Choose from your options and make the most of it. It doesn’t stop there, folks! So for these, I am thankful.
Struggles are real and abundant. In general of course (durh) but yea they do happen here. My freshman year was filled with trying to adjust and manage my time while trying to do well. I had this bad bad habit of comparing myself and my grades to other people because I didn’t know if I was doing well enough. I struggled a lot freshman year emotionally and mentally–I wasn’t as carefree as I should have been for a first year, seemingly bright eyed and bushy tailed (OK WAIT WHAT ARE THE ORIGINS OF THIS PHRASE??) student. Struggles do happen! I had class struggles too but the mindset and perspective I had were arguably more intense. Sophomore year, I struggled with classes (orgo anyone??). Got my first bad grade and was freaking out about it because I felt like I let myself down, especially since I worked so hard. My mother literally looked at me as I was reading the grade to her from ISIS and told me to shut up and be happy that I passed (tough love right?) and that she was happy with the grade if that was the best I could do. Yea. Junior year was a struggle with physics (cue same bad grade story with mom), but also with a mini crisis of self. As in I felt like I’d wasted 2 years here not doing enough stuff. I’m not sure how I quite feel about that yet because some of those feelings are still here, as a senior with just 1!!!!! semester left. But through allll of that…I AM THANKFUL FOR EVERYTHING. And for all that I still have left to do. I’ll be going to Ghana over Intersession and I am so excited. SOOO excited. I have a lot more places to visit and eat at and see before I leave…and more amazing classes to experience before I go, too.
So although this was done in holiday spirit, I’m thankful each day for that which I have and don’t. You should be too! :D