I, as many people do around this year, like to take some time to think about all the good things that have happened to me this semester and what I have to be thankful for. Lots of things have gone wrong for me this semester, but there are also a lot of things that have gone right, and I don't spend nearly enough time thinking about those. As a natural-born pessimist, I have a tough time looking at the bright side of things, and there's nothing like a national holiday to force you to focus on the bright side. So what do I have to be thankful for?

Despite the amounts of abuse I've heaped upon my poor excuse for a laptop, it has yet to fail me. Just think, during any of the many programming assignments I had due this semester, my computer could have decided to give up on me at that moment. Even though I take all the precautions a CS student should while working on programming (save often, use git, save my work on a flash drive as well as locally), there are days when I forget to do these things-- like when I don't save my work for hours because I still haven't written any code that works, or when I'm too lazy to get a flash drive out of my backpack. Any one of those times, my computer could have plunged me into a whole new world of misery by shutting down for no good reason, or breaking permanently, or refusing to turn on, or corrupting the hard drive. My computer is prone to random shutdowns (I've lost entire blog posts before, actually), but these shutdowns almost always seem to happen when I'm not working on programming assignments. That's definitely something to be thankful for.

I also have yet to sleep through a class. Now, let's be clear. I've slept during a class before; I pretty much sleep every single day during OS despite my professor being very engaging. However, I have yet to sleep through a class, which is to say that I haven't fallen asleep in my dorm room and missed an entire class as a result. I'm one of those people who has to attend class every day to understand what's going on. It's not enough for me to read the textbook or learn from the projects and homeworks. If I don't have someone teach me the information, then I won't learn it. So when I miss lectures, it really sets me back in class. And somehow I've not yet missed a class due to the many unplanned naps that have happened during the semester. I always seem to wake up somehow, whether it be because someone who lives on my floor decides to practice singing, a motorcycle drives by on the street outside my dorm and makes more noise than necessary, or my phone vibrates because I didn't turn it off before falling asleep. My luck is incredible when it comes to unplanned naps-- again, something that I should be more thankful for.

Okay, but seriously, I am super lucky to be where I am today. I go to an amazing school with an amazing computer science department. I'm taught by knowledgeable professors and surrounded by intellectually curious peers who are constantly pushing me to be better. I've met so many cool people through theater and activism, sometimes just by chance. And even if I've only talked to those people once or twice, they've shaped who I am in some way, even if just a small one. I am lucky to have met all the people I have, and I'm lucky to have the opportunity to attend college in the first place. I am lucky to have a supportive family and friends, and I don't think I thank the people in my life enough for all that they do for me. As I said before, there are so many good things about my life, and I tend to ignore them all. So thank you to everyone and everything that has gotten me through the semester so far. And thank you, too, for reading this blog. It means a lot to all of us who write for it.

Have a nice break!

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