It’s crazy to think that it is the third week of school, and yet this is the first time our particular class is meeting! I can promise you that I still have a whole zoo of animals loose in my stomach, because meeting new people, or familiar faces in new settings will always be a nerve-wracking experience for me. My name is Sun Kaushik; I’m the second and final child of my parents, the best younger sibling my brother could have wished for, a first-year master’s student, incessant daydreamer, unable to sit still or normally in any sort of seating, and I will never outgrow my awkwardness. I think my awkwardness is actually my most defining characteristic, if we’re getting deep.
My name was born out of both a tribute to my grandfathers and a dad joke about how funny it would be to call out “Sun” and see everyone’s faces when it was not a male child responding as one would expect. I guess too many people aren’t named after big, bright things in the sky, and that’s why the joke works! (Feel free to call me Sun instead of my given name; it is what I am most used to, and I won’t be disclosing my full name at any point here because I am wary of strangers on the Internet!) At twenty-one, I can say the one thing in life I am the proudest of is the set of hands that are typing this post right now. I know it sounds strange, but until this past weekend, I never realized how much power these hands hold. These hands have written, typed, and traced over thousands, possibly millions of words. I’ve crammed countless notebooks, loose-leaf pages, and word documents with notes, ideas, assignments, lists, and everything in-between. The power, however, does not lie in the act of writing, but in the effect it has on others. Writing papers from the opposing viewpoint helped me to spark healthy debate and build relationships with my peers; the cheesy quotes I put up in the breakroom occasionally wrangle a smile out of my coworkers, and can sometimes be the highlight of their day; putting together a grocery list eases some of the strain off of my father and brings out the smile that everyone says I inherited from him.
Beyond this, however, my hands are also what I need for some of my other interests and hobbies. My dad never wanted me to be dependent on others in life, and so he made sure I learned some practical life skills. These hands know their way around a toolbox, and that is why I had no issue putting together an end table and bar stool this weekend, as pictured below. (Although I don’t think I will ever outgrow my hatred for allen keys.)
These hands also know how to change spark plugs, tires, motor oil, and car batteries, and install new bulbs for headlights and an A/C compressor. The family Volvo is my pride and joy because it is something I helped to fix up, and I’ve worked diligently on to maintain.
(And because I can never resist a good meme or joke reference, these hands are rated E for everyone because I will try to use them to catch you or help you up when you need a helping hand! Telling people they can “catch these hands” is so 2015.)
In my introduction post for my electronic literature class, which can be found here, I touched on how I know that this degree will affect the view others have of me, and how all I really want is to grow as an individual. Rest assured, this goal applies to all of my classes in the graduate program, and so does the goal for the blog!
It’s been a blast writing this, but it is nearly 3 in the morning, and the fact that I’m beginning to hear the sounds of some birds and crickets over “Anything but Ordinary,” by Avril Lavigne suggests that it is time to get to bed. Over and out! See ya in a few more hours!
EDIT: So, the first day of class went well! I definitely feel like I’m still trying to figure out my place in the class the same way I’m trying to stick a landing somewhere in the universe, but the less I think about it, the sooner it’ll work itself out. (Or so I’d like to think.) It’s also been weighing on me heavily, so I’ll make a confession that maybe only a few people who’ve read this far down will see: I was the one person who feels like they may not be on the right path and is struggling to adjust to the program. Insecurity and anxiety are two very reliable emotions I can always count on to be there for me, no matter what. But, patience is also something I have a lot of with the world and others, so maybe if I exercise a bit more with myself, this odd inner turmoil will ease out and be replaced with some sort of blank canvas. It’s one of those things that only time can remedy.
I’d also like to share my experience with the Why I Write exercise from this past class. Freewriting is one of my favorite activities, because I can get as structured or as loosey-goosey as I want with what way my pen strokes decide to move. Naturally, with all the snark and anxiety in my compacted five-foot self, I answered this question with a few questions of my own: How else am I supposed to leave evidence of my existence without leaving proof? What other form of power do I have over myself, over others, over the world that exists within me, and the world that surrounds me? How else can I take everything that doesn’t make sense in my head, and make it make sense? How else can other know what is in my head? What else can I do for satisfaction? How else can I remember the language? Where else…
That last thought still remains incomplete since the timer had chimed, and going back and finishing it now almost feels like cheating. Well, “Just a Girl,” by No Doubt has come on, and headbanging is obligatory and not optional, so this is the end! See ya next week!