An Email to My Dad

By Mariel Edokwe (Middlebury College Undergraduate, from Princeton, NJ)

An email I sent responding to my dad’s, who doesn’t usually talk much about politics, but sent me and my older sister a very heartfelt message about our country’s current situation: 

Daddy, thank you for your encouraging words. I will admit that yesterday was especially tough for me here at Middlebury (the entire campus was struck with overwhelming feelings - mostly negative) and I was definitely affected by a mixture of the somber mood combined with my own disappointment as I walked around campus. However, I feel that something that I have especially learned from your example is how to be resilient and look at the positive side of things even in times of distress. Through your words of wisdom, along with mom’s, the support of my friends, faculty, and dance team, I am able to see a silver lining and already feel much better than I did 24 hours ago. I also have tried to open my ears up to things that some of my friends who are Trump supporters have said, and do at times get where they’re coming from.  Most importantly, I think that times like these force me to reflect on how lucky I am, for which I am grateful. I am privileged enough to have a wonderful, supportive family, consisting of two parents whom are my role models and second to none and pay for me to be at the school of my dreams (where I am fortunate enough to have people whom I can voice my frustrations with), a sister who I look up to in many ways and who puts aside time to call me and make sure that I am okay, and live in The United States of America, residing between NJ and VT. I understand that our democracy is a pendulum and it can’t always work in everyone’s favor, and the results of the election are a perfect example of this. Instead of getting upset about something that is now out of my control, this inspires me to continue learning at my wonderful college in meaningful ways so that once I am out in the real world, I can be the change that I want to see. Love you very much, -Mariel