Thursday, May 13, 2010

Those Language Moments

Since I'm graduating college in about four days I thought I'd take some time to relive my intellectual and personal experience with something I discovered a passion for these four long years. And that is language. We all use it to communicate: we promise, ask, plead, command, and question things in our lives all through language. But we often take it for granted. I'm so grateful that I had the chance to study and be surrounded by the magic of language. Here are some things I'll never forget:


Have you ever been studying or working for so long that all you can do is crack up laughing? Have you ever done it because of difficult Latin constructions? I have. I met my best friend through our mutual Latin class. We became friends by doing our homework together and studying together. And four years later he's my roommate. Our best memories come from the two years of Latin classes we took together. From awful pronunciations (which are very funny at 4 AM) to trying to figure out arguably the most difficult language spoken (well, written) we laughed and laughed and laughed. We even called ourselves the Latinae Duae (Latin Duo). When I look back, aside from being proud of my accomplishments with a foreign language, I am so grateful that I had someone to experience the difficulty and nuances of language with. And how it can bring two people together.


This one is about my own spoken word. My own voice. Throughout college I discovered my voice and I did that through discussions and arguing and speaking aloud my opinions, which sometimes you don't know you have until you speak aloud. I'll never forget the Eclipse book club meeting I went to three years ago where I discovered I was "Team Jacob". Because by speaking aloud I realized that stalking wasn't cool and hey, weaknesses and being human were. And my own personal views about how women are depicted and treated by men in novels (and in life) have only grown because of it. I have learned so much about myself through speaking. And those are the revelations worth remembering.


Where would I be without those inside jokes? You know, the ones you talk about with your friends that make you remember all the fun times you had together. It's so amazing how well we can connect with each other, to a certain event and time just with language. It keeps friendships and love alive. So many times I've fought for the people I love with my voice. I've talked them out of bad decisions, talked them into good ones, and fought for my own love with another person through passionate and carefully chosen (and sometimes not so carefully chosen) words. We don't talk to ourselves for no reason. We do it because we know choosing the right words sometimes can be just the thing to make it all better. The fights, the making up, telling someone how much you love them is all possible with language. And there are some of each I will always take with me. Engraved in my heart.


An English major and linguistics minor with a love for all written words. I chose to share my love and passion for reading and writing with others. I got to train and study at one of the best universities and I am grateful for that. I would be nowhere without the motivation and tough love of my professors and peers; always challenging me mentally to think critically and showing me how it translates into real life. I had such an amazing experience at Rutgers.

I could write forever on how language has shaped every aspect of who I am. But I think I covered the most important ones. It's everywhere. Always making us think and always making us speak. Such a beautiful thing.

How has language changed you?

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