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MIT blogger Ankita D. '23

one hour by Ankita D. '23

in which i am Holden Caulfield (but more tragic and less hero)

one hour. one chunk of my day that i’ve set aside for writing because damn, i haven’t blogged in forever and it’s stressing me out (alongside a host of other things i’m anxious about, many of which aren’t even my own concerns)


what should i write about? i could talk about my weekend, which i spent dancing with my team and chilling with my floor in Maine. i could tell you about Ring the Alarm, the dance show that my team is holding tomorrow, and how we’ve been working really hard to put everything together—but wait, that deserves its own post. 


maybe i could talk about how i feel a general sense of unease at how not-together my life is right now, like how i completely ignored my physics pset since i was drained after the midterm last week and how i didn’t study nearly enough for a quiz that should’ve been easy, or even how i’m not drinking enough water or eating healthy at all, and how all of this is documented in a monthly bullet journal that i stopped filling out within a week. 


oh! recently i’ve been thinking about where i was/what i was doing exactly a year ago. i should be able to write about that? i scroll for ten minutes through my Google Drive to confirm my suspicion that i was drowning in college apps at this time last year…lo and behold: “college essay dump”, “princeton app,” “common app version 2,” and “whO AM i?”. also, math team spreadsheets, AP Computer Science assignments, speeches for my public speaking class, a wide array of digital food and habit trackers, and work from when i was in a bad place and was desperately freelancing to make as much money as possible.


out of curiosity, i click on my November bullet journal spreadsheet, but the “mood” section makes me really, really sad. at that point in my life, i was lonely, anxious about not getting into MIT, and struggling to deal with personal issues. when i wasn’t revising my college essays, i was applying for random scholarships in a desperate effort to validate myself and channeling my emotions into Spotify playlists to cope with my burgeoning doubt and self-hatred.


i close the tab.


on a happier note, one positive aspect of my otherwise hellish senior year of high school was that i was reading a lot— 148 books within 12 months,01 damn. imagine having time to read at MIT… in fact. at this time last year, i was reading Everything I Never Told You02 this book fucked. me. up. and Maus and rereading Harry Potter and the Inkheart trilogy. i don’t remember much about my experiences of reading and rereading these books, but i do know that rediscovering Harry Potter and Inkheart was incredibly fulfilling. 


shit. it’s been 28 minutes. i should choose a topic quickly. maybe i can write about how i’ve joined Burton Conner’s Transition Team so i can make my voice heard regarding the dorm’s upcoming renovation, and how the first meeting, which was last week, was just as upsetting as i’d expected it to be. god, it’s so hard to think about how my home is being stripped away from myself and my community; yesterday, my floor chair sent out an email about what our living group is doing next year, and reading it made me tear up. our community being split up is inevitable, and although i joined my floor knowing fully well that i’ll be torn from a significant portion of the group once renovation comes around, i’m still not emotionally prepared for it.


but, again, the renovation is something that affects a large group of people in a profound way, so it definitely merits its own series of posts.


20 minutes left. 


perhaps i can write about the freshman seminar and exploratory class that i recently chose to drop—yes, in November—or the FOMO that i’m struggling with regarding choosing between two sets of double majors, or how i’m applying to MISTI for next summer, or how freaking excited i am for IAP. but there’s not much for me to say about these things; not enough, at least.


i glance outside. it’s not even 5 pm, but the darkness is crushing. it’s also frigid, so the walk back to my dorm will be exceedingly unpleasant. i wonder what i’m doing for dinner…i don’t have much food at home and don’t feel like cooking, but i start to look up recipes anyway—


focus. focus. can i cram an intensive reflection on how much (or little) i’ve changed in these few months at MIT into these last eight minutes? can i consolidate the fragments of ideas i’ve considered in this past hour? can i exercise my creativity in the way i want to instead of throwing a stream-of-consciousness into a Google Doc and calling it a day?


i guess not.


i have to run to a class and then an advising appointment. and then i have to somehow get my life together before 7 pm, which is when my biweekly five hours of dance begins. 


i’ll just find an hour another day.

picture of sunset

view from building 36


  1. "damn. imagine having time to read at MIT… back to text
  2. "this book fucked. me. up. back to text