Work Equals Force Times Distance (Reflection)

Taken from :1 of 28
I've been thinking of the preface for the 2010 annual reflection for a while.  And, as much as I hate the subject, I think physics is an appropriate metaphor.  So, as many high school kids and physicists knows, work equals force time distance.  I guess in terms of my personal and emotional development, I've done a lot of force, but didn't really get anywhere, so not much actual work was done.  But I feel like I have grown a lot.  And this year has been better than last year, even though it didn't feel like it all the time.

I kicked off January with a lot of studying for midterms.  Taking four APs was one of the worst academic decisions at the time because of the work load and the attention to detail I had to keep in mind for each of those classes.  But I also took time to take care of myself.  For the first time in my life, I didn't feel like a total whale and felt like dressing myself well because I felt good.  It was a great feeling.  But I had a ton of relapses into negativity that just weren't good.  I thought I was done with it after Kairos.  What I was finally done with was the JETS competition and all my college applications.  That was such a relief and I had already found out about colleges in early January, so that gave me hope because for some really dumb I didn't think I'd get into schools I liked.  What also happened in January was the Haitian earthquake, a Lady Gaga concert, and a murder mystery dinner with Alice Dork and her family.  We also had Spirit Week at our high school which seemed a bit lame at first, but looking back was actually a lot of fun.  Four days where we could wear whatever we wanted (to some extent).  And in the relationships department, it was a bit of a fiasco.

And then came February.  I had started prom dress shopping and trying to manage my negativity because it was coming back really hardcore.  It was my fourth month of being single and nothing seemed to be working out in my favor.  And I know that sounds dumb, but I had asked my prom date to be my prom and my boyfriend.  One worked out and the other didn't and I felt really dumb. It was around that time when I realized that having ideas was a silly notion and going into things without any expectations was the way to go.  Speaking of surprises, my school gave me a snow day because we had felt the wrath of Blizzardcane 2010 so I had a play date with Alice Dork and Arizohna.  The Vancouver Olympics also took place and those were fun to watch.  And as per usual, when Valentine's Day came, I was single.  But at least this year, I wasn't on the verge of breaking up or arguing with someone.  So I went to see Avatar while I had a pretty bad sickness and Arizohna lucked out that he didn't get it from me.  I spent a ton of time at speechies and I realized that I mostly went for the company, not so much the actual bit of competing for prizes.  I was horrible at speech so I'm really happy that it's over.  Like, really happy.

March was an odge-podge of oddness.  School was causing my stomach to act up horribly and I had to start learning how to manage it properly.  Asthma kept me out of school and I had a funny incident where I almost set my toaster over on fire.  And I got a healthy outlook on my body image and I also started getting into colleges.  The stress just mounted.  Sure, spring break was supposed to be a bit relaxing, and it was, but there was AP studying to do and college acceptance letters to receive.  I did see Red and Live which was awesome and I hung out with the Frenchwoods crowd a lot at a hookah bar.  And that was a lot of fun.  Some of the most fun, wasted nights ever.

And then in April, I got the big college news.  The greatest feeling of anger and disappointment was when I opened my email and got my Brown rejection letter. What killed me most was the fact that I had tried so hard, tried to make everything in my application perfect and it kind of was just one of more philosophy-forming moments of my life.  Just because you try and try, you won't get what you want.  Instead, I got into Cornell, one of the last schools I liked.  And yet here I am.  I visited and liked it a bit.  Like, it was better than Johns Hopkins, in my opinion.  It was also a month of tragedy.  Poland lost its president in a freak airplane accident.  And I felt sad because it just made no sense.  People blame Russia, but an accident is an accident.  I also had a big fit of excitedness.  I saw American Idiot, the musical based off the Green Day album of the same title.  I had a great time.  I saw PBD and we had so much fun.  The hardest part of this month was the drive to not burn out before the end of the year.  There were five weeks left and I wanted to make it there strong.

May started off with a testing bang.  Eight hours of straight testing between my Spanish and Statistics test.  And eight more hours, but not in the same day with English and Biology.  The 1 I got on Spanish was not surprising, but the 4, 3, and 4 on the other tests made me really happy over the summer.  But May was mostly pretty nostalgic.  I mean, classes were over halfway through.  The seniors had a spirit week.  But with classes over, you know what that meant?  High school was over.  That fact totally blew my mind.  At the same time, I felt like "...that was it?"  No rush of emotions, just the kind of nonchalant fact that it was done.  With all the free time I had, I watched movies and cooked a lot.  But most importantly, I prepared for prom, graduation and my birthday.  Prom was a whole lot of fun, but again, nonchalant feeling of "that was it?"  There was some drama involving a friend and her dad, but besides that it was a dance party where people dressed all fancy.  And I liked that.

In the beginning of June, I had officially graduated high school and turned 18.  My birthday was really fun, I spent it with a bunch of people I can have fun with and even met a couple of kids I did not think I would be really close with today.  I celebrated it with My Twin, which we had been planning for a while, but seeing as birthdays only come once a year, we had to wait a bit.  But overall, I did a lot of random stuff to kick off my summer.  I went to a concert, I watched some more movies, I cooked a whole lot more, but most importantly, I reconnected with a person who I hadn't really spoken to in a year.  And that was MSCBFF.  It was explosive.  We talked, I cried, we talked some more, I cried some more...I spent most nights of that week up until 3 AM talking to him and somehow still being conscious the next day for a driving lesson.  I mean, even now we don't talk very often, living our own lives and such and disagreeing on a lot of things, but we're still very close.  And I appreciate that.

July FLEW by.  So much happened.  I attempted at having a fling with people, went clubbing with a close friend, saw MORE movies, met new friends, took more driving lessons, flew to Italy, and had an encounter online that I'm not getting into.  The trip to Italy was special, because my cousin was getting married in the beautiful town of Montepulciano.  I also saw Florence, but the wedding was definitely the highlight.  Did it ruin any kind of diet I followed?  Yes.  But it was really fun.  Besides the Italy trip, I also prepared a schedule of people I had to see before I left for college because that was a reality to come true 20 days after the month ended.

The first I did in August was pull an all-nighter!  Kind of weird considering that I had no work to do, but instead I camped out in Central Park with a few friends to get Shakespeare in the Park tickets.  I didn't get any because of extra waiting and I didn't want to be totally exhausted.  But my friends did this cute thing of having a going-away picnic for me, which was really fun.  I failed my road test a few days later, but whatever.  I can always retake that.  Then the most character-forming period of my life started and that was college.  I moved in my suite at Cornell on a Friday after barely sleeping from excitement and I was super-excited to meet people.  I met a lot.  I wanted to start my college career off with a clean start, but I caved that Monday and went to a party.  And did something really stupid.  I don't really regret it besides the fact that it plagued me with a high child visiting my room at absurd hours during the night for about a month until I developed a backbone.  But the shortness of time that I had adjust was mindblowing.  Like, I came from a high school of 200 people and attended classes where there were 400 people.  I also did things I never did before, like computer science and highly philosophical English discussions.  But I survived my first week of classes and wondered what the rest of the semester held for me.

September was all about learning how to study and going to classes and finding a group of people to hang out with. And in the same weekend, I had the best night ever and the worst.  The best was because a few of my friends had invited me to a party sponsored by The Gay Mafia, as they are called, because of the great atmosphere and the music.  Indeed, it was a great party.  But the next night, a misunderstanding had occurred between my group of friends, my unit, and I that left me alone at a frat.  I didn't get mad at them, I got really upset because that situation took me to an awful place back in sophomore year.  I also went on my first college date and that was ok.  Remember that bizarre situation from August?  Yeah, that ended in September, so I was able to finally sleep at night.  But what kept me up was guitar playing at 3 AM and helping friends out at a similarly absurd hour.  I also attended Snuggie club for the first time.  I have never had so much fun with a group of people.  Sure parties are great, but just sitting around, playing board games with people; that's great too.  Homecoming also happened and Alice Dork visited, which was awesome!  We saw the Glee Club perform and it was nice to know that I was missed back home.  I missed people a lot then, maybe because I hadn't found people I really clicked with.

In October, I had my first of many nightmarish experiences: my first prelim.  It was math, of course, and that was scary.  But to unwind from the math prelim, I went on a unit camping trip with people in my unit.  The wildlife near Cornell is just beautiful and I hadn't seen that many stars in the sky since I went to Poland and went stargazing there.  And then I had two prelims in the same week.  And before those two?  Another one of the best nights on campus.  My friends and I had gone out to have some non-party fun by sitting near the gorges, telling stories, and climbing on statues.  But then one of them wanted to go to a frat for whatever random reason.  And that's where I met one of my closest friends on campus so far.  And then together we planned a night out for a few of our friends for a Thursday and that night ended so well.  But what really sucked was rushing to get bus tickets and get my ass on a bus the next morning to get home on one and a half hours of sleep.  Home was weird.  It didn't feel the same.  But it was nice to see people and just chill out while writing an essay and doing a computer science project.  I was as chill as a person could be while trying to accomplish both tasks.  But then school came again and back to normal personal stuff.  I think I might've fallen for the boy from the frat, but I think I just realized he was a great person and someone I'd really like to have in my life, not just someone I'd want to be romantically connected with (he already expressed disinterest, so that's probably why).  But he still made me really happy.  And after a year of being single, that was probably the closest to having a boyfriend I was ever going to get in 2010.  I'm okay with that.  It proved to me that I was capable of caring about someone yet at the same time being totally ridiculous with them.  I guess that's what made Halloween so great.  That was such a fun night with friends, both freshman and seniors.  And the dancing.  I liked the dancing.

November has been the unhealthiest month in my life.  I have never been so sick, so often.  Besides the  food poisoning, I also started feeling really dizzy randomly one day after I got the results of my second prelim and I really was scared to be alone for fear that something horrific would happen.  Thank God my parents came and gave me some medicine.  I also got the worst bout of acid reflux ever.  The nice boy from October came over and took care of me, which was super cute.  I definitely devoted a few entries to just that haha.  I also started exploring a lot of Ithaca, like the restaurants and stuff, during my study breaks.  It was great and reminded me a lot of the summer and of spring break.  Just random fun.  I also went to pajama rave and had a lot of honest things happen between me and a few people.  And then I got my second chem prelim back at the same time I was trying to wrap up a computer science project before Thanksgiving break.  Needless to say, I wanted to cry my face off.  I did for a bit.  And the nice boy came and took care of me during that.  And talked me through the stress of engineering.  Because honestly, whether you're taking 15 or 23 credits, it is so stressful.  But then during Thanksgiving break, I was awkwardly studying for the final math prelim and trying to get started on the last computer science project.  Every little line I wrote for the project felt like I climbed Mount Everest and then I realized I still had to climb another.  Basically, the worst feeling of belittling accomplishment ever.  But I took time to see people, like going out to dinner for alumni night and going shopping and seeing a movie, namely Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1.  It's sad to think that one of the key components of most kids' childhoods is ending in July.  The books have long been published and movies are almost all out.  And after Thanksgiving, the acid reflux returned.  But I went into December with a nice boy taking care of me.

What kicked off December was a monsoon that turned into a winter wonderland.  And then the snow never stopped.  It still hasn't stopped.  But that week, we had the last week of classes.  The last English essay of 2010 had been written, the last math prelim got handed back (and I did well!), and we played the Crane Game for the last time (I couldn't partake, but my friend did).  There were a bunch of parties that weekend, so I went to Thumpty a few times and went to a Kitsch staff party.  The cutest things I did was the Polish Society Christmas Eve dinner, Wigilia, and see the Glee Club perform the Christmas Vespers.  The food was great and the performance was awesome.  And then I got started on chemistry studying the second I got home.  I barely left my room to do anything during study week.  I got visited a few times by people but mostly, I studied.  Finals were the most painful two and a half hours of my life.  Computer science, I just left after a while because I ran out of ideas.  Chemistry was a mess.  Math was a case of "I could've just NOT studied and I would've had the same result".  I stayed on campus a few extra days to hang out with people and had the most unproductive day of my life.  I was in bed for 6 hours...doing nothing, literally nothing.  I, thankfully had passed all my classes, at the end of it all.  And then I came home.  The first thing I did was go Christmas shopping and hung out with my friends.  The next thing I did?  Christmas.  And then we had a blizzard.  It felt like I never left campus!  And then my friend from campus came to visit and we spend the days together being touristy and shopping and sightseeing.  And that's what I end the year with.

So I guess personally it's been a year of nothing.  But I feel I've grown a lot...because engineering school is truly a character-building experience.

Happy New Year's Eve everyone!  I'll be enjoying dinner with my friends and watching the ball drop at someone's house.  Good times, good times.  Bye bye, 2010!

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