If it weren’t for its convenient spot between Halloween and the rest of the holiday season, November would get no love. With regard to weather, November in Rochester is typically windy and bleak.

Surprisingly, this year’s change of seasons is lagging by one month—beautifully colorful trees still grip their leaves, and the sky hasn’t yet turned a hopeless shade of grey.

Even so, midterms are upon the River Campus, and the 2016 election, in particular, has left wounds on UR’s spirit. Those events alone deliver enough grief.

The middle of a semester can be overwhelming, whether you’re a student, professor, or other faculty member. Responsibilities pile up like the leaves on the Eastman Quad, and the concept of enjoying life may have long since passed.

To give you a glimmer of hope, I would tell you to look around.

The campus is more gorgeous right now than it probably will be for the rest of the year. Leaves are changing colors, the air feels fresh, and the sky is always the best shade of blue this time of year. How often do you look at the sky?

Nature might bite us on the neck if we don’t wear a scarf, but she has left behind art pieces all over campus for us to enjoy. My favorites are the colorful vines sprawled along the sides of academic buildings.

We truly are lucky to attend such an aesthetically magnificent university, and I hope you keep that in mind on your way to your next exam.

The next time a friend or coworker tells you about how tired they are, or insists “I’m dying, but it’s fine,” talk about the weather in Rochester. This might seem banal, but it could remind someone just how alive they are.

Even when the weather gets bad (which it will—we all know Rochester’s snow is just waiting to wreak havoc), find new ways to appreciate your environment.

A good friend once gave me the great advice to “embrace the suck.” Instead of resisting the bad, give it a hug. We must have winter in order to have spring. So really—listen to me when I say life is good.

Tagged: Snow

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