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Conversations: Heading To College
August 17, 2018
Be a better you, for you - Ashish
Sure, I expected you to go to college, in turn, you expected nothing less from yourself. Spending four years learning, growing and focused almost exclusively on yourself is a gift like none other. As you embark on this new journey, think through the sweep of human history and try to guess how many people were given this opportunity. Only after you have acknowledged just how rare and special this gift is, will you appreciate the journey ahead.
There are a million thoughts I want to share with you. However, this letter I will keep to the ones that matter, FOREVER!
I want to start with the one and only fact in life that you can take to the bank. No matter what you do, what you think, where you head, I will always be there for you. I will always love you. I will not judge you. I will always have a listening ear, open arms, and a heart full of love and admiration for you.
I'm here. Always -- no matter how far you go in distance or time.
No matter how involved I may believe I am as a dad, the fact remains, I have learnt a lot about ‘you’ from you! And now that you are in college, everything about you, can only be taught to me by you! So pick the phone every once in a while and give me a shout. Text me random thoughts if you want. Find weekends and holidays to fly down to me and give your pop a hug. And then lets go tee it up and play a round of golf so I can kick your ass.
You are not expected to follow in the shoes of your parents. Blaze your own journey. I will support you no matter what.
Be open. Be curious. To ideas, thoughts, and people. You will meet people smarter than you, dumber than you. People who are absolutely clear with their life goals, and confused people. Some confident, some in-secure. Outgoing and reserved folks. Sensitive and bullies. Enjoy the benefits of meeting some and show compassion for the others. Roles may be reversed any day. Underpinning of treating others well is treating yourself well, too.
Take chances. Follow your passion. You never know what you may discover that may make you more accomplished.
Heap your plate with its academic, athletic, cultural and social offerings. Never again will life mix youth, freedom, opportunity and resources together in quite this heady combination. If these are to be the very best years, you must make them so.
You are now in a place where alcohol is both tacitly allowed and legally forbidden. The only thing that stands between you and a very bad experience is your own good judgment. But here is the tricky part. You need to exercise that good judgment at the very moment when it is already impaired by alcohol.
Keep in touch with your brother. He absolutely adores you, looks up to you and respects you. Whether you want to admit it or not, you guys are the best of friends and well after your parents you will have each other. I ask that you build him up instead of tearing him down. He is going to miss you tremendously.
Over the next four years, time will seem to go by faster. Change comes more quickly and more dramatically. Enjoy every moment. You get one shot to this life. The prize is here, now, in every breath you take, every new friend, every kiss, every challenge, every exciting piece of information you discover. Live it up.