Tying It All Together: Sunday Morning Questions, Thoughts, and Fears

One of the things I’ve always valued and loved about the weekends is the Breakfast Ritual. It could be Saturday or Sunday, really, but I feel Sundays are better suited for this. Here are the basics:

  1. Wake up without an alarm. It sets a nice unrushed feel to the day.
  2. Tiptoe around the room so as not to wake your roommate.
  3. Listen to The Dallas String Quartet and Jingle Punks Hipster Orchestra as you do the dishes.
  4. Make (strong) coffee and a bowl of Marshmallow Mateys (ShopRite’s version of Lucky Charms)
  5. Sit. Eat. Think. Ask Why?
  6. Repeat step five for as long as you care to sit in solitude enjoying the quiet. Or until your roommates get up.

That is the start to a good morning. Just contemplating your life, thinking about what you want to do, not what you have to do, and ruminating why you chose the paths you did as the coffee kicks in.

Today, my Sunday morning questioning takes the form of this writing, and I’ve just hit all the marshmallows in the bottom of my bowl (I like to save the best for last).

I know asking really vague questions isn’t as fun as other things, or as comfy as staying in your nice warm bed. But sometimes it’s good to let your mind wander and take an uncharted and unplanned course. Which has led me to thoughts of yesterday afternoon.

I met with the same group of friends who gathered to talk about what authenticity is, but this time we focused on why people have trouble being authentic.

Why are we so afraid to be our true selves?
Why do we find the need to prescribe to societal standards that don’t always reflect our true inclinations or beliefs?
Why are we intimidated by letting people in?
Why are we afraid of being open or practicing self-acceptance?

The answers that come to mind without thinking are the ones most likely to be true. Peoples’ responses yesterday: Fear of rejection, fear of ridicule, fear of not being accepted for who we are. And the list goes on …

Those words: ridicule, rejection, acceptance, all bring me back to middle school bullies and trying to change who I was in high school (it took me a couple years to realize how much I was hurting myself and those around me in a fruitless battle to be “cool”). I’m 20 and I still have the fears of a 13-year-old. Please tell me I’m not the only one.

If I’m not the only one, then shouldn’t it be easier to reach out and connect with others, who undoubtedly want to feel like they belong at this school just as much as I do? Or is this a larger social problem, something that is impossibly huge and scary and multi-generational? Maybe it’s a combination of both.

Spiked hair on a Sunday

Confession: If I felt that people were more open, I'd probably spike my hair more frequently.

Self crossword - the missing letter is a T, by the way

You can't tell who a person really is just by looking at them. You have to ask and listen. Don't be afraid to initiate.








I know I don’t have the answers to all these questions, and I’m not asking you to, either. I also know I don’t have perfect solutions. But I have an idea about the (possibly subconscious) intimidation of others.

When you walk over the bridge on Charles St, or through College Center, unglue your eyes from your phone or iPod and look at people as you walk by. Smile and wave. Ask how they’re doing and mean it. Show interest in their life and well-being; they will reciprocate. You don’t have to go out of your way to be present to others. Just a nod will do. I know I’m not the best at this; sometimes I miss a wave or “Hey’” because my earbuds are in, but I’m trying to get better.

One thought and smile at a time.

I’ve Got Questions, We All Need the Answers.

What is self authenticity?
How are you real?
What makes you know that you are who you say you are?
How do you hold yourself accountable for your self-awareness?

These are some of the questions that came to my mind after having a (really cool, amazing, thought-provoking, awesome, attention grabbing, real) conversation with some new friends about stereotypes at Loyola and how they affect the culture at school.

Before you close the window because answering these questions is scary, (heck, asking these questions is scary), hear me out. Let me try to answer them in my own way:

Self-authenticity is not being fake. How do I know I’m not fake? I can look in the mirror and say with good conscience that I am happy with the person staring back (most days, I’m not perfect). I can look at myself and accept the physical, mental and emotional stuff that makes up a human body, a human soul.

I know who I am because I think about who I want to be. Part of realizing who you are comes from learning about what you aren’t. It’s kind of like process of elimination, but on a much larger, positive personality-oriented scale.

I know I’m not the only one who knows who I am. My friends, professors, fellow students, family, and my lovely readers, know who, what, how, and even why I am. They hold me accountable for my representation of myself.

At this point you can argue that the term “representation” is relative. That there are parts of you that you have to keep separate from certain environments. That History Class Rory is different from Art Class Rory is different from Alpha Aide Rory is different from Knitting Teacher Rory is different from Roommate Rory is different from Home Rory is different from Talking To Professor Rory.


I like to think that while I may adopt a different tone or be required to wear different clothing for certain situations, I am still seen as the same person at any time.

Even if it means that I trip over myself, wear kooky earrings, dance awkwardly from sheer happiness, laugh uproariously, staunchly defend my views, stay in on weekends, not do well on a test, cry over fictional characters, and most of all be content with my decisions (right down to eating a fourth cookie).

The oddities are what make me unique. The imperfections that I sometimes wish I could ignore make me real.

One of the problems of going to a school that places emphasis on students who are the ideal is that those who don’t quite make it get ignored. Even worse, those who are on the opposite side of the spectrum feel even more alienated. The blind rationalization of stereotypes perpetuates a negative social culture on campus. Boxing people into definitions is “safe,” it means that we don’t have to give people time to get to know them, to make them feel valued. But isn’t being valued what this is all about? “Cura Personalis” “Care for the Whole Person.” How can we care for others if we don’t even care for ourselves?

I know, I know, these are really big issues. You probably wish I’d go back to talking about apples and art. But this is what I’m thinking about and I’m supposed to write about what I think.


The word of the day is Authenticity. Use it in a sentence. Use it in your life.

Know it, accept it, learn it, be it.