Molly’s Musings

Laboratory of Life

By Molly Young

Laboratory of life


A pink suitcase rests empty on my bedroom floor. Propped beside it, a black backpack lies unfilled. Nearby, piles of clothes and stacks of books wait to be packed.

Winter break is over, and the countdown to class has begun. It’s time to go back to Lincoln; time to start another semester at the University of Nebraska.

As I prepare myself, I can’t seem to erase a thought from my mind. I enjoy going to class, at least most of the time, and I feel like I learned quite a bit.

Life’s lessons aren’t printed on coursework or presented on whiteboards, however.

Written like a true college student, I know. I bet you’re rolling your eyes now, aren’t you mom and dad?

Admittedly, last semester’s history professor taught me a lot. I can now explain the flaws in Frederick Jackson Turner’s thesis of the American West, illustrate the settlement patterns of frontier immigrants, and demonstrate several ways to mine for gold.

But learning doesn’t cease once school’s doors are closed. And education doesn’t end after the office’s computers go dark for the night.

Wisdom comes from our surroundings: the people that make us laugh, the places that help us remember, and the things that make us tick.

Knowledge can come in small packages. I love spending time with my three-year-old cousin, Gabbi. She knows she will grow up to be the Little Mermaid. The certainty in her voice reminds me to follow my dreams. Her laugh tells me life isn’t so serious after all.

Or wisdom can come from larger things. The sun settling behind Nebraska’s rolling scenery reminds me of creation’s vastness.

Sunsets don’t fit in classrooms. Laughs can’t be published in textbooks. Our lives, then, are the real laboratories.