It was a day I had a million assignments due all at once. I was too busy. Working and taking nineteen credits had reached the point of no return: I was going to fall behind. I was falling behind. Having hardly any time to actually complete my assignments by their deadline, the stress and anxiety took hold, followed by the reality that I may not finish my homework by the midnight deadline.

I had a short time frame to get it all done. If I hurried maybe I could still keep up. Maybe. Just maybe I could make the deadlines, and keep up alright in my classes. Maybe I could keep my sanity, too.

I finished up my last class of the day, finished my extracurricular obligations, and realized I had a school event to attend that night… though ironically these supposedly fun activities were very low on my list of priorities despite the fact that my attendance was mandatory. I took a deep breath, and tried to remain calm in the midst of chaos. I had to get home and hopefully finish some studying before I had to leave again.

The rain was pouring as I reached my car. Quickly I got in and turned the key in the ignition, trying to keep a positive attitude, as my mind spun with thoughts of my large to-do list that deep down I knew I would never complete.

I turned the key in the ignition.

I turned the key in the ignition.

I turned the key in the ignition.


My heart fell as I realized that my car battery had died right there in the parking lot.

Great. Another thing to add to my list.

I took a deep breath as the rain pattered against my car. The wind picked up. It’s like the weather is reflecting my emotions.

Luckily, my house was only a short drive from campus. My family comes to the rescue, and I was on my way again, but the whole dilemma had taken up too much of what little time I had.

There was no way I was going to finish my homework, and I’d have to just accept that. Not enough time and too much stuff to do.

It was a day when every minute counted. When every minute was the difference between submitting my assignments on time or late.

What I realized is this: it’s okay. Life goes on. Sure, the situation wasn’t ideal and my crazy schedule resulted in extra stress and didn’t allow for anything to go wrong that would take up extra time. I shouldn’t have overbooked myself. I should have taken a step back and focused on what was truly important.

Instead of focusing on all that went wrong, I should have been focusing on all that went right and what I had to be thankful for. Instead of despising the fact that I had so much to do and not enough time, I should have been thinking about how blessed I am to have the opportunity to go to school, and how I’m fortunate to have a job that helps me pay for my education. Instead of being upset that my car battery died on my busiest day, I should be thankful that I didn’t have to wait long before it was fixed. Instead of wishing the days were longer and I had less on my to-do list, I should be thankful I get to live such a full life.

As the saying goes: It was only a bad day. Not a bad life.

There are days that will be tough, life won’t go as planned, and I won’t meet my deadlines. But the truth is, I’m blessed to live the life that I do, and I’m thankful. I’m thankful that I was able to study at an institution that challenged me academically. Thankful that I was able to work a job that helped me pay for it. And thankful that I have friends and family who support me.

This is a lesson I remember when faced with any challenge in my life. To be thankful no matter what.

personal essay self-reflection Thankful

Rachel Writes View All →

Hi! My name is Rachel. I love to write. Write about life, love, and reflect on how the past builds the future. Mostly, I love to tell stories because I believe there is something about stories that brings the world closer together. You can check out some of my writing reflections here at Rachel Writes.

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