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Goeun Park: Finding happiness one pumpkin spice latte at a time

It’s Sunday afternoon and I am living the most glamorous existence imaginable.

Don’t get me wrong; college is one of the biggest challenges I’ve faced so far. Half the campus has the sniffle bug and I am practically drowning in work. There are papers to write, Herodotus to read and problem sets to solve.

I need to conjure up an intelligent thesis in less than 24 hours. I can’t hold a chord on the guitar if my life depended on it. I still have no idea how to write a biology lab report.

And life is great.

Today, I woke up before noon and the roommate brought me a tumbler full of pumpkin spice latte. I have a box of peanut brittles from the Dollar Store. It’s finally under 80 degrees, which means it’s sweater weather.

Life is great. I just wish I kept telling myself that a week ago.

Last week was one of those weeks I had to drag myself through. Maybe I fumbled; maybe I was due for a really bad week. For some reason, everything seemed difficult and I felt perfectly inadequate at everything. I dropped out of Latin Dancing. I sat in the back of the class. I listened to sad Icelandic music.

Obscene workload or not, I try not to ruminate over my privileged problems. Last week was an exception — my head was up in the clouds and my heart just wasn’t in it.

Since I’m not inclined to do a repeat of last week, I’ve been warding off the bad feelings by counting my blessings. So far, I have pumpkin spice latte and peanut brittles. There’s leftover Thai takeout in the refrigerator. This morning, I ordered a smoothie and an omelet for brunch because I could.

Other than the obvious food perks, I have a pretty nice roof over my head. In fact, I will probably never live in as much luxury as I do now. Never again will I have housekeepers who’ll clean my bathroom and take out the trash. Never again will I have chefs make me beautiful omelets without breaking my bank account.

Above everything else, I treasure the relationships and acquaintances I’ve made so far. Residential college life is like a 24/7 sleepover; it’s almost too easy to befriend people. I’m surrounded by so many amazing and wonderful people — it’s hard to feel lonely.

In retrospect, I don’t know why I was so overwhelmed. They practically spike the water with happiness here. I digress. Today is a new day and fall break is just around the corner. I got this.

Goeun Park graduated from Detroit Lakes High School and attends college in California.