It was nearing the end of my sophomore year. I had a pretty similar life to everyone around me. I’d wake up in the morning earlier than what was healthy so I could get to my 7:30 AM class at my school 30 minutes away. My dad would usually have eggs and bacon ready for me by the time I was out of the shower and my mom always made me a smoothie that tasted exactly how it looked—like slop. I finished up classes for the day, and then came my favorite part of the day: hockey practice. Playing hockey was the one thing that got me through the school day because I never felt more free than when I was skating, with the cold air against my face while my feet glided across a smooth surface of ice.
College is a time to discover and chase your passions, cheer until you’re hoarse at exhilarating football games, have profound late-night conversations, and meet strangers who become your best friends.
Topics: stories of grace
Growing up as an ultra-early riser, I would sometimes awake just as the sun was coming up to catch the early hours of Sports Center, for no reason other than to be able to say I woke up before my younger brother. Ten-year-olds can be competitive about the strangest of things.
On the 29th morning of October in the year 1994, my mother lost her favorite rosary when she flung it across the hospital room and broke my father’s hand as she gave birth to a beautiful baby boy. They named him John after John the Baptist because, like Elizabeth, my mother had given birth to her first child later in life. They brought him back home to love and cherish forever.
I think that, if we’re lucky in this life, we’ll get to come across perhaps three or four really really good ponds. This story begins with one such pond: a koi pond at Balboa Park in San Diego. This particularly good pond was something that I happened upon while ambling around the park one sunny June afternoon in the company of someone I dearly love. We weren’t alone in thinking it the perfect day to take advantage of such a treasure: there were dog-walkers and stroller-pushers, families and friends, couples old and young. Loveliness seemed to flutter all around this large pond, gently begging us to lend our attentiveness.