There's an ad on my post page that says, "You don't have to be perfect to be a perfect parent. There are thousands of siblings in foster care who'll take you just as you are." I find it slightly offensive; it feels like they're implying that children in foster care are willing to 'settle' just because they're foster kids or something.

In any case, I should be asleep right now because I am getting up in five and a half hours to head to Victoria, primarily that early because on a whim some of us decided to try out a free 'hot yoga' class, and it starts at 10 am. But I also need to shop for Asia-Pac in Chinatown, clothes in Value Village (the most awesome thrift shop ever) and stationery from Staples (I need black pens, man.) Maybe food, too. I was looking at recipes to send to the food committee and I got so terribly hungry; it was a sudden stroke of craving.

But I feel different, guys. Something happened this morning before SAT IIs – and it's one of those tiny moments that seem fleeting and unnoticeable but somehow becomes the only suspect for … whatever's caused the shift. Perspective. I know what I did but it was pretty childish and silly, but I found something in it that … helped. I'm backing up, backing away – and I just had a pretty good day, I suppose, after that. A couple of noteworthy conversations with both new first years and different second years, and the latter, especially, even though it took place during the time I was supposed to study vectors intensely, was such a great conversation that spanned countries and epochs and went from terrorism to the Catholic church and home and back again and it – gave me a sense of warmth towards them, with the realization that people can be so good even when they're young and foolish and reckless and stupid; mature and reasonable, even if we gossip salaciously about people on campus in between discussing Pakistan-India relations and the rise of religious extremism.

I finished East of Eden and the phrase 'tour de force' kept popping into my head towards the end. It's an amazing character sketch of humanity, I think, and that's the closest I can get to explaining (however inadequately) how I feel about it. It was thoroughly bleak and depressing and there is one horrible, horrible image that is still stuck in my mind but the note of human hope was strong and resonant throughout all that. Of course, there was a little of that romantic tying of loose ends, of pieces falling together just the right side of crooked.

And my parents called too, and there's always a strange grounding after I talk to them. (I also wrote a letter to my grandmother in Chinese after, because I felt incredibly bad.) And – nothing has changed but. What is it? These mercurial change of moods. Still, under that, nothing has changed. But I have found an easier, lighter way to breathe, and today has been worth it, and that's enough for now.

I have at least ten things to do tomorrow on top of going to town.

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