Because A Smile is a Gift

Hello everyone!

First off, I’d like to say that I’m very impressed you’re reading this right now… and that you should definitely be watching the Olympics! When I started writing this blog, opening ceremony was in two minutes, and I know there’s a crowd downstairs watching it live :) . I’m excited to watch swimming and gymnastics especially, but I hope I get time to see some of everything!

It’s been a good week for me, with lots of events :) . Let’s start with Saturday, since I just finished loading and labeling the pictures for this week, and almost all of them belong to Saturday’s adventure: visiting the Boston Science Museum! This Saturday, Wellesley hosted a free trip to the Science Museum—free bus there, free bus back, free admission. I jumped on board, and spent four hours perusing the space—and could have used a few hours more :) . There were so many cool things, and I’d love to go back again later. Check out all of the photos to see where we went!

Hopping back to Friday now, I’d like to thank Tiffany and her family for hosting me again :) . Tiffany picked me up, after which we ate a wonderful dinner, played Harry Potter Scene It with Abby (Tiffany’s youngest sister), watched Toy Story 3 (the second time for me. I have a character-crush on Andy), ate Patricia’s (Tiffany’s younger sister) fantastic cupcakes for dessert, and spent a thoroughly enjoyable evening together. It was incredibly wholesome and Disneyfied, but that’s exactly how I and Tiffany like our fun, so it was essentially the best time ever :) .

Monday night was crazy too! Erin offered to drive me, Alice, and Angela to see the Dark Knight Rises, which was long, plotty, and good :) . Look at me, watching Spiderman and Batman in one week… I’m so impressed with myself, since I was always more of a Tamora Pierce heroine-fanatic rather than a superhero fan. They were both fun though, and I’m grateful to the people who allowed me to see them! (Thanks grandma and grandpa and Erin!)

My Tuesdays and Thursdays are usually busy with work, and then two hours of swim lessons… but on Wednesday I acquired another hour of swim lessons! Professor A came and asked me to teach his children, and since I only have a week left in Wellesley, we’ve been doing an hour every night :) . Remember when I used to fear teaching in the beginning of the year? Now it’s so much fun. I am SO lucky to be here; tutoring, teaching swim lessons, being a student, writing this blog, and doing research are pretty much my ultimate jobs, and I get to do all of them!

Thursday was my next exciting event: the Graduate Student panel. It was a great accompaniment to the Career Panel last week, because the presenters at this panel were all very recent Wellesley grads. The speakers were Rachel Buglione-Corbett, Kara Feilich, Alexis Fischer, Ellie Fleming, Elizabeth Kelley, Rosalind Lai, Adriane Otopalik, and Megan Strait, and all had great stories and were very interesting and driven people. I had the opportunity to talk to Kara afterwards over dinner, and it was literally enlightening to listen to her passion for research. I’d never seen anyone speak about research the way she did—that it was what she loved to do, all the time, that she would make opportunities for herself to do research outside her lab when she was at Wellesley, that she would make up her own projects and follow through with them, that she was so driven and was dead-set against going to Harvard Graduate School until she met her advisor, who said he’d take a bat to anyone who went against whatever research project she wanted to pursue, and that it was then that she knew she’d found her fit. After listening to her, I had to plop myself down on the elliptical and think to myself for an hour and a half, trying to figure out if I have or could develop the same kind of drive she has. I’m still figuring it out, but it was SO important to me that I had the opportunity to hear her speak to me personally at a dinner table. I love Wellesley, I love that I’m growing up, I love that there’s people like Kara in the world. I think she’ll do such great things, and inspire people like me along the way. I am so, so lucky, and so grateful to all of the people who have prepared me to be where I am, who have gifted me with the curiosity to ask questions, the small bravery to reach out for opportunities, the confidence to enjoy Wellesley, the love of my peers, the money and foresight to get me to this school, and the people here and those who are invited here who offer us their thoughts and attention on a silver platter. Thank you, thank you, thank you. You are all the best.

And I think I’ll end with that, since we all have our own lives to get back to! As always, I’m here for questions, comments, and whatever else you wish to share with me :) . Hope you all have a great weekend, and are enjoying the summer!

Best to you,
Monica


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