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After 11 days out of town and 14,852 miles traveled, I’m home.  The bulk of my travel was a trip to celebrate my anniversary (more on that to come), but the last few were at NACAC, the national conference for my profession, where I presented with two incredible #wonderwomen and spent time with a third favorite.  (These are a few of my #wonderwomen.)

P I N I T

Normally, I find that conferences are the best place to recharge my batteries – something I’ve been desperately seeking for several months now.  There were many highlights (and hugs) from people I absolutely adore, but I’m still looking for the ignition switch.

My favorite moment, however, was when my co-presenter dropped the answer, “Wealth doesn’t equate knowledge [of the college process].”  

How simple.

How very true.

How often do we take knowledge for granted?  How often do we assume that people know or should know more than they do?

I’ve challenged my colleagues to remember that we’re here to support, advocate, guide, advise every student and family…

but I’m going to challenge you, too.

In your professional (or personal) life, what do you assume and shouldn’t?  How can we be a bit more supportive, a bit more loving, and a bit more patient?  In today’s (annoying, stupid, ridiculous, insert adjective here) world, I think we could all use a little more support… so what can you do?

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  • Stephanie - They’re all perfect <3 Happy Anniversary!ReplyCancel

  • SMD - Happy anniversary.

    Pink puffy heart love these photos.ReplyCancel

  • Katie Elizabeth - Happy, Happy Anniversary sweet friend!!! You were such a beautiful bride and these pictures are amaaaze!ReplyCancel

  • Ashley @ The Wandering Weekenders - Happy Anniversary! It looks like your wedding was beautiful, and I hope that you had a great time celebrating!ReplyCancel

  • Bri @ My Life As - Happy anniversary!!ReplyCancel

  • Mandy - Happy 4 years Sara! You were an absolutely gorgeous bride! I love that shot of you standing in front of the curtain, though – the silhouette. So pretty! And the dancing shots are fun. Looks like it was a great day! 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Amanda @ Our Capital Life - Happy anniversary!! Your wedding looked beautiful.ReplyCancel

  • Christine Keane - Such a beautiful wedding! You looked gorgeous! And you know I already love your wedding colors! It looked like such a fun party!ReplyCancel

  • pinky - YAY anniversary! I’m out of my hole of studying and catching up on blogs. This pictures depict so much joy!ReplyCancel

I had never really thought about it – where I was born, who I was born to, or even what the implications of being born are.  It wasn’t until right before the last presidential election that I was confronted with my own privilege; the privilege that exists in merely being born in the United States.  Just by being born, I was given the privilege to work.  The privilege to travel freely between borders (usually without a visa).  The privilege to exist outside the shadows.  I hesitate to use the word privilege because I didn’t earn any of it – and when I was a kid, a privilege was something you earned.  It doesn’t matter – I didn’t earn any of it.  Perhaps you could argue that my great (great-great? great-great-great??) grandparents earned it, but I don’t know anything about their story, so I couldn’t tell you if we “earned” it or not.

This realization brought me to tears as I realized that so many of the students that I fight for on a daily basis are at risk for having their work permits revoked, or worse yet, being deported, having their families deported, or any other horrors that I can’t possibly imagine.  The fact that we require people to live in the shadows in this country is appalling to me.  Many of those who would be impacted by the revocation of DACA were brought here as children.  They did not choose this life.  They have, however, worked legally, paid taxes, and contributed to society in a positive and meaningful way.  Many of my DACA students outperform their citizen peers in one way or another.  I have many DACA students who have graduated from college with degrees in high-need fields.  They are filling a void in this country; why do we believe it is okay to relegate humans to the shadows?  Some don’t even speak Spanish, they have assimilated so well.  Others have grown up believing they were citizens, only to find out differently when they started applying to college.  You can blame their parents (if that makes you feel better), but that doesn’t change the lack of humanity and how we treat people that we deem as not having “earned” the privilege to be here.

 

And while we’re talking about privilege to be here…

I have served high schools with large refugee populations.  Their stories aren’t different from my DACA students, but the difference is that we’ve deemed them refugees and awarded them asylum.  We’ve given them immediate status without a waiting list.  We have immigration lotteries for countries we deem to be “more worthy” of awarding immigration to.  I don’t seek to take anything away from those students or families, but let’s not pretend that there’s a huge difference between the two stories.

Human is human, at least how I was raised.

Consider this.  What did you do to deserve to be here?  I’m not asking what your parents did, what your grandparents did, or what any other family member did.  Why are you here?  How did you get here?  What privileges did you earn by merely existing?

I’m not asking whether you worked hard.

Whether you got a fancy degree.

I’m asking what you did to earn the right to live outside of the shadows and without fear.

For me, it just so happened that I was born into the right zip code to two parents who also happened to be born into the right zip code on the north side of the border.

And for that, birth is a privilege.

Call your congressmen and women.

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  • Mandy - I have been so busy, so distracted, that I haven’t been paying as much attention to politics as I should be. I think the fact that people who have never known life outside of the US are being deported is absolutely despicable. And it goes so much deeper … first responders during emergencies, military men and women who have fought for the US, why are they getting pushed out? Why are they getting discriminated against?

    Then you’ve got idiots in charge that turn away blankets and water in exchange for prayer after a hurricane. http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/quebec-offers-aid-texas-hurricane-harvey-1.4267387

    I really don’t know what the US is coming to. And I’m confused about what is more important to fight for, because everything seems important. 🙁ReplyCancel

For More London Postcard Photos:

Long Weekend in London, London by Night Postcard Photos

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journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos
journey of doing - London Postcard Photos

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Wow.  It’s been a couple of days.  Last week, we were preparing to host my in-laws from Houston, who were coming into town for the wedding of a family friend.  Thursday evening, my brother-in-law called to let us know they wouldn’t be coming because his job was requiring him to stay because of the upcoming weather.  My husband’s parents, however, did make the trip.  They are still here but are headed back to Houston tomorrow to assess the damage.

My brother-in-law and sister-in-law had to make the difficult decision to evacuate with their baby late Sunday night.  Their neighbors had to evacuate in chest-deep water with their baby.  I don’t want to get into this more because it’s not my story, but I’ve had a lot of difficultly sleeping for the last few days.  Sunday night was rough.

I suppose I could talk about kindness.  I have many friends from college in Houston, and I reached out to one of them (that I didn’t know all that well) when I heard my family needed to evacuate.  Not only did he immediately offer up his cell phone, his wife’s cell phone, and his home to them (if they could get there and gave me multiple routes to consider), but he provided phone numbers for rescue services that weren’t yet overwhelmed.  My staff member immediately texted her parents in Houston for resources they had.  Seeing people pull together made my heart grow three sizes (because I’m a grinch).

One of my staff members wants to plan an volunteer day for our team, so maybe I’ll have more to share later, but right now I’m just in shock that it got so bad so quickly.  I’m hoping that my in-laws return home to minimal damage, but I know that’s unlikely.

If you are looking for places to donate, StephKatie and Pinky have great options on their posts.

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  • Katie Elizabeth - So so awful. We’ve been saying all the prayers for everyone in Houston. It is pretty amazing to see all of the goodness coming from humanity though…ReplyCancel

  • SMD - Good thoughts to your fam and everyone. So devastating.ReplyCancel

  • Ashley @ The Wandering Weekenders - Your in laws might have been some of the lucky ones, unless they’ve already been in contact with neighbors and have an idea of the damage. It’s crazy how certain areas were fine while others were not. And all of the people that were willing to help out during all of this has been extraordinary! I’m glad that hard times seem to bring out the best in people.ReplyCancel

  • Bri @ My Life As - My thoughts are with your in-laws.ReplyCancel

  • Olya @ The Siberian American - I’m so sorry your family was affected by the floods. It has been really amazing to watch people come together and serve each other. <3ReplyCancel