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MIT student blogger Phoebe C. '18

HNY from NYC for IAP, 2016 by Phoebe C. '18

time passes so quickly, help

Happy 2016! (By the way: 2016 = 2^5*3^2*7, in case you need the factorization on a math competition but haven’t bothered to factor it yet, hehe.)

After finals, my brother and I flew home and stayed there for about two weeks, which filled themselves with card games and electrical failures. We live in deep suburbia, the sort of place whose main assets are relative safety, clean air, and good public schools. It felt unusual to have so little to do, and I ended up desperately catching up on fiction, doing crossword puzzles, seeing high school friends, and missing MIT. I had intended to get ahead on coursework–but the flesh is so, so weak.

My family rang in the new year at home with a power outage. I’ve since relocated to the Jersey City loft where I’ll be staying this IAP–I’m spending the month of January on a finance internship in New York City. Both MIT and home feel a world away; I am being taken by both the excitement and the mild distress that come with being alone in a new place. My room faces Manhattan. Makes me feel classier and older than I am. Leaves me wondering how did I get here. I bought two suits on sale yesterday, and I turn eighteen in a week; I feel like my spirit is aging more quickly than my body.

I like to write a reflection every new year, and though I haven’t yet written one on 2015, I did look back on those from the past few years:

2011 “Selflessness, love, more-than-halfhearted but less than consuming-the-mind ambition. Happy midtones, etc.”
2012 “thank you: friends, heart, brain, blood”
2013 “all the friends i made or kept this year–thank you…i feel sometimes like i am made of you guys”
2014 “My first semester ended two weeks ago; I don’t think I’ll ever feel like I’m learning fast enough anymore, don’t think I’ve ever felt so exhilarated or so exhausted. Let’s move, and let’s move fast. Go, do–I know I will.”

2015 Now staring down houseplants and city lights on a frigid night of this very warm winter. Still running around with nebulous destination. (Less fearfully now…but still, yikes.) Still confused about the relationships between ambition and dissatisfaction (positively correlated?), stability and happiness (negatively correlated?). Still exhilarated, still learning too slowly. (Though 2015 was very educational.) Extremely glad I’ve become less self-destructive than I used to be. About to reread a favorite novel instead of chasing my mind around in circles. (Because! I’m! actually! just! screaming! internally! about! how! quickly! the! year! flew! by!)

Anyway…consider this post a demarcation of a starting point. Let’s see where we are in a year.