Sunday, July 16, 2017


Today was very mournful. But it started off frantic as I had planned to finish all my packing by yesterday, but I fell asleep in the middle of my packing. I woke up to a call from my chaperone Deven who said he was arriving soon so I ran around and packed as fast as I could. I was surprisingly fast and finished with time to spare. So I helped my fellow cohort members with their luggage and it was tiring because we had to haul heavy luggage down many stairs, but we finally met up with our chaperone, carried the luggage down more stairs then Deven took our luggage to our hotel and Javaria and I went to have breakfast.

I wasn’t feeling sad or mournful yet because it didn’t set in that this is my last day at Cornell. But I went to the Donlon lounge to see Eunji play the piano one last time. She is super talented and played nearly every song ever written for the piano. I said goodbye to her and went to checkout. I found one thing that I wouldn’t miss. My small, sweaty and not so pretty room.

Today was emotional. I miss Cornell, but I am happy that I am home. I loved every moment I spent in Cornell. I loved my class. It was life changing. It empowered me to create change in my community and with the organization I helped found I am already making steps to do that. I also loved the people. I made friends that I will have for life and that inspire me to change for the better. I loved the entire journey I had with the ILC and I am happy I took the opportunity. This is time in my life that I will look back with fondness and happiness as I remember the people, place, what I learned and how I changed. I would like to say how thankful I am to the ILC and Don Gosney for giving me this opportunity. I would never have done this without you and I thank you from the bottom of my heart.   

I went to Balch to, meet with Sultana and Javaria. I knew Sultana was leaving, but it didn’t seem. Javaria and I sat on her suit cases as a form of “civil disobedience”. We walked out to where Sultana was going to be picked up. We talked and laughed, but when her parents’ car showed up my heart immediately dropped. I realized that it was real and I will be thousands of miles away from one of my close friends. Javaria and Sultana started crying and I tried my best not to, but I let a tear slide. It was hard. Sultana is an absolutely amazing person and it was fantastic that I got to meet her, but it was hard to say goodbye. Javaria and I needed a break to recuperate. This was the moment where my departure became real. I started to realize this is the last time I will see this beautiful campus and the last time I will see all my amazing friends. That thought hit me hard. But also started to think “What’s the point of feeling sad? Just enjoy your final moments.” And that is what I did. 

Javaria and I went to the slope and sat where we always sat with our friends. I thought of how fun it was and I smiled as I looked at the beautiful view that overlooked all of Ithaca. It was nice to go to this place one last time. It was my favorite spot on campus and it was nice to get some closure. I said goodbye to the slope like it was an old friend and went to lunch with my whole cohort.

Before we went to lunch we stopped by Cascadilla gorge to take photos. I always love going there because it was so beautiful, but we spent a short amount of time in the gorge and ate our lunch at a halal. It was good and then we were off to Deven’s hotel.

From there we picked up our suite cases and other things and head off to Ithaca airport. As we sat there waiting for our plane I spotted some people I recognized from the Summer program. I talked with them a little before I boarded my plane that departed from Ithaca and landed in Philadelphia.

On the plane I left Cornell behind in my mind. From then on I focused on home. I missed home-made food, my cats and my friends. It was discouraging that it would be more than 8 hours until I would be home, but I was okay with sleeping on the plane. The plane ride from Ithaca to Philadelphia was very short and kind of disappointing because I wanted to sleep, but all I got was a short power nap.

My time in Philadelphia was short. We found our gate, got dinner and sat down. I was content with sitting down and watching YouTube, but I became aggravated because we had to wait for a flight attendant who was late and then I forgot why, but we were even more delayed. I got a little upset because all I wanted was to see my cats. But after getting on the plane and the plane getting delayed more I fell asleep for the entire plane ride.

When we landed and drove home I was too tired to think let alone be excited that I was home. When we got to El Cerrito High School my entire cohort had a photoshoot. I tried my best to keep my eyes open. Then I saw my mom. Immediately I got energy and became really happy. I missed her so much and it was beyond difficult being away from her for a month. I honestly don’t know how I’ll handle being away from her when I go to college for real. I made it home around 2:30 and immediately fell asleep.

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