For this day’s prompt, I am supposed to list my five biggest accomplishments in my life thus far, which means you get to put up with yet another list from me! *maniacal laughter*

  • Well, going to Oxford has to be on this list. Being accepted into a study abroad program of my dreams and getting to attend lectures, tutorials, and explore the libraries of Oxford is a huge accomplishment of my life. Of course, it wasn’t just going to Oxford, but it was the opportunity to experience a lot of other places and things during that semester, too (i.e. Hadrian’s Wall, Paris, London, Edinburgh).
  • In the same way as Oxford, getting accepted to and attending graduate school is a wonderful accomplishment. My accomplishment here is greater because I somehow graduated with the degree and survived the experience without fatal wounds. I’m still sorting through what it did to me psychologically and emotionally, but for the most part I know that grad school will always be an accomplishment.
  • I also view adopting Janie, and keeping her alive and happy, as an accomplishment, as well. I know it’s not the same as having a child, but I have another living thing depending on me, and only me. And not only have I managed to take care of her on my own, but I have earned her trust, taught her to interact with humans, and am gradually helping her overcome fear. That is a wonderful feeling.
  • Another wonderful feeling, I taught a class. And not just any class: I taught a senior-level seminar course at my alma mater. Even though the experience didn’t end up as a completely happy one, the fact that I was able to go back to my college, teach a comprehensive course, and hopefully beat some historiography and professionalism into my students is a big accomplishment. I fulfilled a dream with that one, a dream that I had given up on at the time. And I couldn’t be happier to say that I did it.
  • Last on this list, but certainly not least, I have made lifelong friends. I have managed to make long-lasting friends at all different stages of my life. I have friends from when I was a child, friends from high school, college, grad school, Oxford, friends from different jobs, all whom I somehow stay in contact with at least annually, and it always seems as if no time has passed from when we last saw each other. Now, I don’t have tons of lifelong friends, but I have enough to the point where I know if I really needed one of them, I could pick up the phone and they’d be there for me. I’m not the sort of person who makes lasting friendships easily, so the fact that I have such an amazing group of people standing behind me definitely is a blessing, if not an accomplishment.