Tag Archives: life

Car Accidents, Self-Compassion, and Other Summer Adventures

Imagine driving down the highway on a bright summer day. The wind flits across your skin, the sun filters every car around you in a lucid glow, and your vision shifts down for just a second. Then, the moment you look up, your life ends.

Exhibit A: wrecked car, with some supplies on top.

Exhibit A: wrecked car, with some supplies on top.

I acknowledge my melodramatic word choice. However, when the accident happened, I felt like my entire world – and not just my car – had crashed. After fidgeting my limbs to see if they still worked and checking to ensure that the other driver suffered no injury, I proceeded to have a little bit of a meltdown. Continue reading

12 Comments

Filed under Personal

Why I Write The Quiet Voice: Thomas’s Twentieth Birthday Edition

I turn twenty in an hour and a half, and the English major within me wants to explain why I write this blog. In addition to my thoughts on society, books, and pop, this site has always served as a space for me to reflect on my personal life, as you can see from how the traumatic events of this past semester show themselves within my recent writing. Though this thesis might change, I will make it clear, as of today: I write this blog so that it can serve as a place of compassion, for myself and for others. A quick definition of “self-compassion,” provided by professor and researcher Kristin Neff:

As I’ve defined it, self-compassion entails three core components. First, it requires self-kindness, that we be gentle and understanding with ourselves rather than harshly critical and judgmental. Second, it requires recognition of our common humanity, feeling connected with others in the experience of life rather than feeling isolated and alienated by our suffering. Third, it requires mindfulness – that we hold our experience in balanced awareness, rather than ignoring our pain or exaggerating it. We must achieve and combine these three essential elements in order to be truly self-compassionate. – Kristin Neff, Self-Compassion.

Two themes run throughout my life: the depth of my emotions and the struggles I have encountered. Continue reading

25 Comments

Filed under Personal

Thomas 2.0

Dear J,

One month has passed since you ended our friendship. 28 days have gone by since you took my heart and shattered it in your hands, smiling the whole time.

I could write about anger. I have every right to hate you for the horrible way you treated me. This past month has been a whirlwind of emotion, in which some days I sing “Break Free” at the top of my lungs and others in which I spend hours in a dark haze of memory and regret. You hurt me, and though I do not often feel frustration, I still get upset at myself, for trusting you.

But the idea of anger brings me back to a quote from Jane Eyre, in which Jane’s friend Helen says “life appears to me too short to be spent in nursing animosity.” Every second I spend thinking about you means one less thought given to my true friends, to the issues I care about, and the causes I fight for. Continue reading

6 Comments

Filed under Personal

The Worst Pain in the World

Last night they slammed a sledgehammer to my heart, and my whole world broke into pieces.

If you do not like personal posts, please do not read this. But if you care about me, please do. Continue reading

47 Comments

Filed under Personal

Personal Update: Abortion, Missing Reviews, Goodreads, New Semester

A post in four parts:

Abortion: Yesterday morning I finished Pro by Katha Pollitt, a fabulous work of nonfiction that I reviewed on Goodreads and even made a Facebook status about. I could sing so many praises for Pollitt’s impressive research and incisive writing, but at the center of it all she does a remarkable job of focusing every argument on how the war on abortion acts in truth as the war on women: on women’s rights to equality in every sense. If you feel any ambiguity toward the pro-choice movement, read Pro. Trust me.

Breakfast in Williamsburg with Pro. Feels good to be back.

Breakfast in Williamsburg with Pro. Feels good to be back.

 Missing Reviews: So why did I not post my review of Pro on this WordPress blog? Continue reading

7 Comments

Filed under Book Reviews, Books, Personal

Back to School (with Selfies and Posters)

This past Thursday, I moved back to college and volunteered to help freshmen with course registration. Afterward, acquiring alone time felt wonderful after such a hectic summer, and all of the nature on campus added a scenic touch. Also, because neither my roommate nor I brought posters to our respective rooms last year, I decided to buy a few to spruce up our living space.

Fitting posters for an English and Psychology double major, right?

Fitting posters for an English and Psychology double major, right?

The passage of time still surprises me. Continue reading

24 Comments

Filed under Personal

Gossip: Good for the Soul, Believe It or Not

As someone who was bullied in middle school, just like everyone else was bullied in middle school I understand how hurtful other humans’ words can be. Still, we all talk about other people. We discuss our favorite literary characters on Goodreads, we analyze our beloved television and movie protagonists on Tumblr, and we hear parents converse about their children all the time. But talking about your peers or other people in general brings benefits, even though society tells us otherwise. The rewards of gossip depend on the gossipers’ intent, and if done for the right reasons, it can help out several people.

This selfie from a few months ago captures how I feel about middle school. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times... just kidding, it was only the worst of times.

This selfie from a few months ago captures how I feel about middle school. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times… just kidding, it was only the worst of times.

Continue reading

12 Comments

Filed under Society