Hi guys! It’s 12:47am on this Black Friday morning. I’m about an hour late, but I just wanted to do a quick Thanksgiving post highlighting all the many things I’m grateful for in my life.
In all honesty, I’ve been acting like an ungrateful brat lately, especially regarding college. Let me begin by saying that it’s a BLESSING to be able to attend university, not to mention a good one like UCLA. It is a privilege that I’m able to get a degree from a reputable university while being financially supported by my dad 100% of the way. I am so freaking lucky, and sometimes I totally lose sight of that. Lately, I’ve been so stressed with midterms and projects– but what college student isn’t? My stress and frustration has lent it’s way to negativity and bitterness. I find myself longing for college to end, so I no longer have to study for classes that are either annoyingly difficult or do not interest me. And the worst part is, I find myself complaining to my parents about how rough a time I’ve been having at UCLA. How college hinders me from pursuing my creative passions for dance and skating, and how I’ve gained a significant amount of weight since coming to UCLA (that, of course, is completely my own doing). I look back now and think, “My goodness, Belicia. Can you imagine how your poor parents must feel, hearing this from you? They’re paying a fortune for you to be ungrateful and miserable?” I need to stop this self-pity bullcrap. I have nothing to complain about. I am blessed, I am privileged, and I have a great life– better than many others.
Needless to say, I am so grateful for my wonderful, loving, supportive family. Without them, I could not do anything or go anywhere in life. I sometimes forget that many of my peers are not quite so privileged as I am to have been born into a life of stability, comfort, and overflowing love. I kind of just assume that everyone has an unconditionally supportive family. Honestly, the fact that I can even dream so big is a blessing. Some people can’t afford to follow their passions, or even go to college. They have to help provide for their family from a young age. I’m lucky, because my parents have never given me a reason to worry about money. Never ever. So I’m grateful for my parents. I’m grateful for my grandmother, who, even at the age of 85, insists on helping around the house and cooking meals for us. I’m grateful for my brothers, whom I can’t imagine my life without. I’m grateful for my cousins and aunts and uncles who, even from afar, remain supportive of me and my dreams.
I’m grateful for my friends, most of whom I met at UCLA (see? college isn’t all that bad!). If y’all aren’t familiar with my story, you probably don’t know that I didn’t have many friends back in high school. I was depressed and socially anxious throughout the latter half of my teenage years. I remember those lunch times spent sitting alone in the hallway, eating my homemade lunch while reading a book or reminiscing on my gymnastics days by watching old competition videos. It wasn’t a high point in my life… I was so lonely. It was only when I reached college and was able to open up that I found true value in friendship. Life is filled with so much more color, when you’re able to share memories with people you care about.
I am grateful for the opportunity to pursue my passions for rhythmic gymnastics, dance, figure skating, and writing, even though I haven’t had much time to do any of these activities lately, with academics as my priority in my life. A part of me wishes for all the time in the world to pursue these passions, every minute of every day, instead of being stationed at my desk, head buried in a book. But again, I mustn’t dwell on what I don’t have. Instead, I must focus on the fact that God blessed me with these gifts, and that they are there for me to cherish, whenever I need an escape from reality. Not everyone at my age have found their passions; I was lucky enough to have found mine at the age of 5, with gymnastics, and to have found so many others, subsequently.
And of course, I am grateful to my small but loyal base of readers! To those who’ve stuck by my journey since the beginning, I am grateful to you. My hope with this blog is to make a positive impact on the lives of my readers. Doesn’t matter if I reach 5 or 5,000 people. It means so much to me that you guys are interested in what I have to say to this world… it makes me feel like my voice really matters. So thank you all.
Most of all, I am grateful for my health. The recent shooting in Thousand Oaks that took the lives of many college students reminds me of how lucky I am to be alive and well. Even though I face mental health challenges, I know that I can get through my struggles with my strong support system of family, friends, and therapists.
Alright, folks. Time to hit the hay. I’m going Black Friday shopping tomorrow for the first time with friends, and have to be up by 6:30am. I’ll talk to you very soon– stay tuned for my December “Blogmas” series!