A note to the reader: I tried to write about everything that happened during April but realized early on that it would take half an hour to read just one post, which is why I’ve divided it up into 3 parts.
When people ask me how last semester was, the first adjective that pops into my head is radical. So many incredible, note-worthy things occurred that my mind continues to be blown. March brought about the opportunities of OPAS Chair and an internship with AdventGX. I thought that surely the excitement was over……oh how I was I wrong about April.
|I’m the second from the right!|
Part One of this series of adventures began on April 18th when I received my Aggie Ring. For those non-Aggie readers, the Aggie ring is the most sacred thing you receive as a Texas A&M student. You have to earn it (90 hours, or Senior status), and once you get it…you never take it off. This may sound drastic (welcome to the life of an Aggie), but it’s rooted in tradition and respect. Everyone has received the same ring for generations — it does not change from year to year, and it is a mark of your school for the world to see.
|I was excited to say the least!|
|Pure joy with my aunt|
The Aggie ring is incredibly recognizable; it is encouraged (and regularly practiced, I might add), to strike up a conversation with someone you see wearing an Aggie ring. I’ve heard countless stories of meals being paid for, jobs being offered instantaneously and hospitality being felt simply because a fellow Aggie noticed another ring. It is the physical embodiment of the Aggie Spirit which unites us all together, solidifying the Aggie Network.
|Aggie mother and daughter|
Because this is such a huge honor, Aggie Ring Day is a massive celebration. Ring recipients dress up and invite their friends and family to their ring presentation, whereupon someone of importance bestows to them their Fighting Texas Aggie Ring.
Coming from a large Aggie family, I had multiple options to chose from for who would present me with my Aggie ring. Ultimately, I decided to ask my Aunt Melissa, who serves on the Board for the Association of Former Students (TAMU’s Alumni Center) because she and I have bonded so much since I’ve been at school. She even was able to pull a few strings and allow me to get my ring early in their conference room!
|So many Ring Day celebrations!|
The day itself was filled with so much joy and excitement. My entire family, including grandparents, aunts and uncles, came. (Unfortunately my sisters were in school, so they couldn’t make it.) My best friends all watched, as well, and the President of the Board even came and said a few words to us since I was “special”. (My aunt is actually the special one; I just got to reap the benefits of special treatment!) I was so incredibly proud to now possess the mark of Texas A&M, the school I love so much.
Three of my best friends (along with thousands of other students) received their rings also, and while the festivities were exhausting, I enjoyed every minute of it. To celebrate the accomplishments of so many people that I care about was wonderful, and I’m grateful that I got to support them as they supported me earlier in the day.
I always say that I am my happiest when I’m surrounded by those I love. Being in college, that usually means I only get to experience this dream in portions: when I’m at school, I miss my family, and when I’m at home, I miss my friends. The longing has definitely subdued with time as I’ve learned to not rely on the presence of people; however this desire is apparent on the rare occasions when everyone is in the same place at the same time. I know I sound like a cliché, broken record, but I am so blessed to have the friends and family that I do. They love and love and love unconditionally and fervently, continually showing unwavering support and eagerness for all my ventures and milestones. To look around in that room full of these people made me feel loved in a way that I’ll never forget. Love is such a powerful thing, and while I felt an incredible amount of it for Texas A&M that day, it didn’t compare for how much I love my friends and family.