Life @ U of T

How My Family Keeps Me Balanced #JoyatUofT

University is hard, between a full course load, extracurriculars, and working two jobs - trying to complete this degree can be exhausting. It can get so frustrating and motivation can be hard to find, that's why it's so important to me to find moments to decompress and find some joy.

My greatest support system has and always will be my family. Since we were kids, my sister, cousins, and I have always been very close. More like 7 siblings rather than just cousins. Despite us living in separate cities and countries, we have always managed to maintain our friendships above all else, something I have truly come to appreciate while being in undergrad.

Being a Support System

My cousins and I at Christmas/New Years 2018

As a family, we've been through a lot in the last 6 years, having to say goodbye to our youngest aunt, grandmother, and this past Boxing Day, our uncle. We've held each other up through some of the darkest times and have come to naturally rely on each other for support - especially the eldest.

My cousins have been able to give me advice on whether I should stay in courses, or defer to summer school, and always preach need to prioritize my physical and mental health above all else. There have been moments where I have been completely lost and if they weren't there for me to rant to, I wouldn't be able to talk through my problems or concerns easily.

They have also been key in deciding where to apply to graduate school and were the first people to congratulate me on my first acceptance!

My Key to Keeping Balanced

I can be a complete stick in the mud-- I find it hard to turn my mind off. I am always thinking about work or course work or upcoming deadlines, and if it weren't for them, I would probably only ever be in my room.

My sister, eldest cousin, and I at the New England Patriots Game in Buffalo

They've always encouraged me to try new things, and enjoy my life rather than just staying home to watch Netflix and just study all the time.

My cousin, sister, and I in New York, Summer 2019

They tell it like it is and will forever be my main source of entertainment. They encourage me to travel and take risks! Just last Friday, my sister, and her friends took us to eat in an OUTDOOR greenhouse...when it was -10 degrees outside.

It's because of them, I am confident in my decision to study abroad for my master's degree.

My joy comes from family, they keep me balanced and encourage me to be the best version of myself. Where does yours come from?

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