Being a teenager is all about learning to deal with the chaos. These are just the facts of life, stuff happens, people get hurt, and things don't always go the way you plan. Things have a tendency to spiral out of control, happenings get blown out of proportion, and subsequently chaos ensues. It's a state of panic, fear, and uncontrollable stream of events. But when the dust has settled, the smoke clears, and you're alive and well - you'll know you've made it through. It's just utter chaos.

Chaos can sometimes be a necessary evil. It's a part of life, while it may not always be wanted, it definitely does have it's place in the world. One of the few things I learned from chemistry last year (which was little, eff chem - that ish sucks) was things are better disorganized - that's the natural order (is that entropy, oh who knows - I'm not Bill Nye "the Science Guy"). When things take a sharp turn from the road you thought you were about to go down, all hell can break loose. I'm talking Zombie Apocalypse, alien invasion, and espionage organizations being compromised bad. Like damn, things could not possibly get any worse at this point. It's when you're at that lowest point, when everyone is running around with their heads cut off, screaming bloody murder, and doing the most - that you need to calm the heck down and chill out. As my IRA co-advisor Drake would say, "fix your face" and "center yourself." Just breathe, step out the moment and the crazy going on around you, and just be where you are. Analyze the situation, and act according after you've taken out some of the emotion you've been feeling. Chaos and crises averted.

Waking up refreshed on a hump day (take that however you want) is always a good feeling, but sometimes you know that that good feeling won't last forever. It was the final day of the IRA (residence hall "government") retreat and we all (as in Terra, Eric, Felicia, Bret, Anna, Sam, Drake, Learie, and I) got dressed to head off to breakfast. We enter the back door of the kitchen like some old "help" - like a servant who shouldn't be seen. We spend the morning going over Robert's Rules and deciding how to make our agendas for out many (many) meetings. We plan the next couple of weeks out and take time to write personal "I am" poems. Things get real deep, and real emotional, real fast. We're all being vulnerable and sharing some of our most deep-seated insecurities, hopes, dreams and fears. It was empowering. We go outside and stand in a circle and do a tapping (not like that) exercise where we let people know we value them. We end with a sharing circle and realize how far we've come in our short week and a half of training as a group. We pack up, take that sweet panaromic room photo (top one, duh) and head into downtown (if you could call it that) Burlington, VT for American Flatbread pizza. We were doing literally standing in a parking spot to save for our sketchy black van. The pizza was really good and it was fun just to hang out, and share all of our food as an epic group. Back to campus where we get an hour to put our stuff away and regroup to do some postering and final touches and info stuff. We pull some Mission Impossible type stuff and borrow the printer like super secret spies, lookouts and all. We all change for dinner and meet back to drive downtown to this Chinese family-style dining restaurant, a Single Pebble. We take our obligatory group picture and proceed to have the most well planned, filling, and enjoyable dining experience of all time. On the table is a lazy Susan (spinning table on a stationary table) that we abuse like nobody's business. We're all telling stories, laughing way too loud, and eating way too much. After a couple of hours and dessert we finish up and go out separate ways. I head back to my room to help my suitemate, Joel (or as I call him, Joelly-Bear) move some of his stuff into his room. Later in the night I do some major work printing out stuff for poster, and making ridiculous lists of things to do and buy. I shower up and climb into bed - another completely chaotic day done.

Another day another struggle, a motto nobody should have to live by - but apparently it's the story of my life. I get up super early (I consider anything before 8am early, don't judge me) and get dressed to walk over to WDW with Sam. We get there and with the help of Eric finish up our last poster. Bret, Anna, and Felicia show up and we divide up where we're all be putting up door hangers on campus. We spread out all over and go out in pairs canvasing the halls, hitting literally each and every door (like dang). The stairs, the door, the paper cuts and the sweating - I was more than done at two halls. I had a meeting at 10:30am to go to in the Davis student center so I broke off and went there. I enter the office of student life where everything is flying about like fighter pilots in WWII. Every which way people are zipping, talking, texting, calling, and doing whatever they can to finish their work. I see so many people I know but I'm just in my own little world. I met with the asst. director of student life to revamp the speech I'll be delivering to the UVM class of 2016 at their twilight induction ceremony on Sunday. Then we get to the door hanging conversation where I learn about week of welcome possibly taking ours down for theirs and how I need to get that together ASAP. I grab t-shirts for move-in crew and get introduced to like 6 different people - and I'm overwhelmed, like pause - I understand I'm important but give me room to breathe. I leave the office and head over to the executive offices in the Waterman building to grab my binder with the super detailed events for Sunday's platform - and just enter panic mode. I'm like more than done, I sweating buckets, and it's blazing hot. I was just not having it at that point. Carrying way too much stuff, tired of walking back and forth between parts of campus, and now I had to get this door hanger situation under control. Chaos was breaking loose. All my executive board members were trying to contact me all at once and I was just about to shut down and just give up. I kept going, I made it back to our safe haven of our WDW office and just took a few minutes to gather myself. I talked to my advisers and they dealt with the ordeal. Eventually lunch time comes and so Felicia, Eric, Sam and I go to retrieve food from downtown. We're waiting at the bus stop on Main Street and I see my #collegecrush - looking good and right (as always - homegirl could get it whenever) walk by and I'm just flustered even from seeing her. Thank you - that girl is date-worthy. We make it downtown, pick up our food and head back up to campus. On the way up the bus literally shuts down, the engine goes off and we're just on a hill. The passengers were being rude and doing too much - but we made it back after a short delay to scarf down lunch and depart. My suitemates Jimmy and Joel were busy moving their stuff in, and my roommate, Patrick made a guest appearance as I dozed in and out of afternoon/evening sleepy time. Done for

Being a teenager is all about dealing with the chaos that seems to always be around. Things have a funny way of playing out, and it's almost always not the way you predicted. When things go haywire, communication is confused, and ish starts to hit the fan - chaos ensues. You've got to take yourself out of the situation, bring it on down, and calm yourself. You can do this, you will do this, and you've got to do this. Chaos ... diffused.

My blog post question for the day is ... what gets you overwhelmed? When I'm supposed to be doing multiple things, and I being pulled every which way - it's just too much. Oh, greeting tons of people in a short period of time as well - like let me breath.


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