Archive for May, 2014|Monthly archive page

Quick Thought from Study Abroad

In Thoughts on May 19, 2014 at 6:08 am

“Religious people crave meaning; all people are religious. Everyone needs symbolic order to their life.”
-Turner, Image and Pilgrimage in Christian Culture

People crave meaning. Do they know the meaning? No. Do they continue to search for it? Absolutely.
To me, life’s meaning is to give God something to be proud to watch; to live striving for the best in everything, not in a hyper-competitive way, but in a challenging way. It shouldn’t be easy. It will always be easier to cheat on a test or to duck under the turnstile bars at the Metro. I believe God is proud of those that work hard to earn an honest living, those that go out of their way to help someone, and those that strive for the betterment of themselves and therefore the world.


Vegans: Help!!

In Lifestyle on May 9, 2014 at 12:25 pm

I am leaving Monday for my Maymester Study Abroad program (holy shit!!) in which I will be going to Paris, Lourdes, Iona (a small island off the Western coast of Scotland), and Edinburgh. We will be in each city for approximately 4 days. One thing I have been worried about is food. If my stomach is upset or I feel too full, my anxiety is triggered. My anxiety and my stomach go hand-in-hand and obviously I’d really like to minimize any anxious situations that I could avoid while away.


So, as I’ve been eating vegan for these past four months, I’d like to stick to that as best as I can for the trip. I’m not worried about Scotland because there won’t be a language barrier so I will be able to read the menu easily and communicate what I can’t eat to the server. I am worried for my 8 days in France though! What should I look out for on the menus? What should I say to indicate that I am vegan and to get across what I can’t eat? I’m perfectly fine with eating salad with no cheese and dressing on the side most of the time but I don’t even know how to ask for that! Bread doesn’t bother me at all (it probably soothes my stomach more than anything) so I will definitely be eating that in France. Let me also add that I don’t know a lick of French. Sooooo, there’s that issue.


My plan is to pack a ton of Larabars in my checked bag and to make sure I always have a few in my purse just in case. I’m also bring some microwavable rice & quinoa packets that are sooo filling so I can always eat those in the room. I also don’t want to be a hindrance to anyone on the trip. I don’t want to choose where to eat for everyone else just because of my dietary restrictions but oh man, I really need to avoid dairy like the plague, It KILLS my stomach now.



What do you all recommend? Any vegan travellers out there, please help! Any information you can provide would be greatly appreciated.





In Thoughts on May 6, 2014 at 12:40 pm

Life’s purpose is different for each of us. It also evolves with each of us over time, as situations change, as opportunities arise, as our eyes are opened wider. When someone asks you the sole question “What major goal gives your life meaning right now?” What do you say? We each have different goals for our lives, some more pressing than others with time limits that may be self-imposed. I know I do. I believe our best creativity comes from our early twenties, while our minds are still changing, and our brains are having their final growth spurt. This belief is driving me to work on my first life goal, something I want to contribute to the world to give my life some meaning, to justify why I’m here. I want my writing to touch people the way great authors have touched me. It isn’t just some frivolous art but rather life or death. Had I not read some of the poems I did in the year after my father’s passing, I’m not sure if I’d still be here right now. That sounds so harsh, I know, but those connections are what made me feel alive when nothing in the outside world could. It sure makes you feel much less lonely when you can connect with a poet from the eighteenth century, knowing there was someone out there that felt exactly what you feel at one time. The authors conveyed these messages to me that helped me with what I was going through more than a therapist ever could. The poems said exactly what I wanted to say when I couldn’t form the words myself. They helped me grieve. They taught me that it is okay to live, and to live with such purpose that others will benefit from your life too.

This is why I want to write. I want to produce something that will connect with the lonely ones, the ones going through such rough times that a book is all they could count on. So, writing may seem like a meaningless career to some, but to me it is therapy. It is helping others through depression and issues that are so deep no human could ever help- only words. Words and their meanings, their mysteries, their truths- that is what will help others. I hope that my writing could stop others from harmful actions. I hope that my writing can help others make peace in their lives. I hope that my writing can make such a difference that people can say that their lives were saved by my words.

That is my goal and that’s all the purpose I need in life.