Freshman Findings: Giving thanks for little things

I forgot my iPhone 5 charger at home and all my friends still have iPhone 4s. #FirstWorldProblems.
Far too often it seems that we take things for granted. Materialism is everywhere, and it can be difficult to find the time to give thanks. With Thanksgiving approaching, now is the time to count our blessings and be grateful for what we have, instead of focusing on what we lack.
We all know where our next meals will come from. We all have beds to sleep in and clothes to wear. We have support systems that consist of friends and family members who help us through rough times. Sure, the lines at Daly’s may seem never-ending and waking up for Monday classes might be difficult. However, what we have on campus is more than what some may receive in their lifetimes. We are all receiving excellent educations at a notable institution. We all have amazing goals and dreams that we would like to achieve. The opportunities that are all around us should not be taken for granted. An education is something that should be cherished because knowledge really is power. In order to be successful, you need to understand the world. Some classes may not be fun, but they are crucial for building our knowledge.
In previous years, I was thankful for more petty things like reality television, boy bands and dessert. This year, I have realized that, while those may be great, it is important to be grateful for the food, shelter and education I have. The small and minute details of life are not essential, and the world would not end if boy bands disappeared. We need to take this time to appreciate life as a celebration and not get stuck on the materialism of it. Manufactured goods can be great. I adore designer clothes and shoes as much as anyone else, but when such objects consume someone, priorities become shifted.
This Thanksgiving, spend some time at home and realize just how much you have in your life. Embrace what you have now and cherish everything before it goes away. Though every day may not be amazing, joy can always be found in the little things.
-Valerie Bell
Freshman public relations major

Printed in the 11/20/13 edition.

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