My First “Grown-Up” Job

I’m writing from my dorm room on Duke University’s campus! I’m finally here starting my position as Dean of Residence Life for the Summer Session program. The past two weeks, I’ve been frantically trying to get a head start on some of the preparation. It’s amazing just how much planning needs to happen before the staff arrive, let alone the students. I still need to finish planning staff training, complete the training binders, and most importantly assign housing! I’ve never had to assign rooms to students before and it’s quite a daunting task. I’m really glad I have a friend from last year helping me as Resident Hall Director. I really like the other admin team members as well. I came into the office all last week and am beginning to get to know everyone. They are all really great and interesting people. We seem to be communicating well so far; hopefully, we keep that up!

It’s so weird having a “grown up” job. I have so much freedom to make decisions and use my own judgment. While that is liberating, since it is my first experience as a Dean of Res Life, I’m using every opportunity I can to ask for feedback from my peers. That’s another thing; I’m the youngest admin on the team, even some of my RAs older than I am, but people don’t seem to be holding that against me. I can honestly say that I’m being treated as a peer. I feel that for the first time in my life, I’m being treated as an adult, and I really like it. Although there is a lingering sense of I-don’t-know-what-I’m-doing panic, I think that may be part of being an adult too, not being afraid to say you don’t know and asking for help. I really look forward to this summer because I know I’m going to grow a lot as a person and a professional. I will also get to work with friends from last year and Elon. Oh, by the way, did I mention I’m going to CHINA? Yeah, that’s happening.

Wish me luck,

Beck

Tatted Up

Readers, I forgot to mention that I got a tattoo last week! My sisters and I wanted to do something together that signified our commitment to each other. We may have been brought together by family, but we are choosing to stay together because we love each other.

Being apart from my eldest sister this past year has been really difficult for all of us. We had to get to know one another all over again during the past two weeks, but ultimately we are stronger in our relationship because of the challenges we faced together.

It took us forever to come to a consensus about what we wanted, how it would look, and where to place it. All of us had to compromise, but it was important that we all got the same thing. We decided on a lotus blossom for a number of reasons: (1) it’s the national flower of India, (2) it’s a symbol for purity, beauty, and flexibility, and (3) it’s really pretty. :)

20140606-005225-3145321.jpg

We went to a place called Tattoo Bills in Charlotte, NC. They were really nice and accommodating. I highly recommend them! We decided to go in age order, so I went last. Before my experience, a lot of people told me that getting a tattoo doesn’t hurt all that much. A lot of people are liers! It hurt SO MUCH. It was like getting deeply scratched by a cat with really long nails. The memory of that pain will haunt me. Luckily, it didn’t take more than 10 minutes. It’s strange that permanently altering your appearance should take that little time and be such an easy process…you know, besides the excruciating pain.

I’m kind of a badass now, cause I’m tatted up. ;)

Beck

Life is Beautiful

Graduation

Who is in charge of speeding up and slowing down time? Whoever it is, you’re fired, because the past two weeks have sped by in a moment. When I was a kid, I remember my parents telling me that time would pass faster the older you get; they weren’t kidding. I wonder why it’s so hard to slow down and make the most out of enjoying the moment.

I graduated 12 days ago. It was a beautiful day. So much happened that weekend, it’s hard to process! I just remember smiling so much it hurt. I wanted to stretch each second out like taffy, so it would last as long as possible. When I finally drove away and realized I didn’t have any excuse to go back, it was a bittersweet feeling. That day I felt invincible, because I had accomplished something really hard, something not many others get to do.

My invincibility didn’t last long though. My car didn’t care that I had to drive to Raleigh that day; it still blew a tire. It turned out to be a nail. It was Memorial weekend though, so I had to wait until Monday to get my tire patched. A small hiccup in the day’s festivities, but a sobering one for sure. The rest of the day I spent driving 50mph on the highway for more than two hours trying get everyone where they needed to be.

The next day, my parents renewed their marriage vows and we had a celebration at church. I woke up early, got out my nicest salwar kamez, and headed to the church with my family. In our usual fashion, we were more than 30 minutes late, but what can you do when your entire family is wired for Indian Standard Time? We ate a cake with one of my parents’ cheesy wedding photos printed on it, and hung out/took naps in the afternoon. That night, we headed to an impromptu dinner at The Pit in Raleigh.

On Monday, I said goodbye to my hilarious Uncle and Mississippi friends who travelled up for the weekend. I also traveled down to Charlotte in order to spend as much time with my sister before she left for home in Seattle. I dropped her off at the airport yesterday. I miss her so much already!

What I’ve written here is basically a summary of events that I’ve participated in over the past two weeks. What I haven’t written here are the crazy ups and downs, dramatic arguments, and frustrating obstacles that my family and I have worked through in this short amount of time. The marriage vow renewel ceremony was also a family renewel ceremony. My family has been apart for so long, and we are just beginning to be knit back together. I am getting used to having my Dad around, referring to his judgement, and receiving affection from him.  At times, it’s uncomfortable, but it’s a discomfort I welcome, because I know it is good. We’re all having to relearn how to trust, rely on, and be there for each other. I may have come from a broken home, but it is no longer broken; for that, I praise God.

Beck