Airtime Perspective

It was 6:30 PM and the flight into Chicago was just starting its decent into O’Hare, where I would make my connecting flight to take me home to the final leg of my #ACPA16 trip home to Lansing.

Chicago 1
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Having a window seat, I watched as the blur of Chicago began to get brighter. We gradually dropped in altitude and the blur began to take the shapes of street lamps, yard lights and cars. Having this birds eye view, I watched the lights moving, coming and going, turning on and off. It had a pulse of its own. A living city of lights. Some moving, some standing still, and others flickering on and off or changing colors.

And as many of you know, being in a post-ACPA reflection mode, the depth of contemplation is deep. And on this flight, it was no different. The scene laid out below made me think of Student Affairs, Higher Education, society and life in general.

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We are always in the midst of the bustle and the hustle of daily work, conferencing, and socializing. Working or dealing (however you look at it) with family, friends, students and supervisors. So much so, that many times, we don’t always see the pulse that we each individually make on the larger body.

We forget to acknowledge that everyone plays a part in their own way and to not to ridicule or shame others for how they decide to play their part.

For some it’s the sustainability of being still and strong pillars staying in one place. For others it’s moving and grooving from one location to another sharing and gathering knowledge. Meanwhile others are going from “light” to “light” and helping to ensure each shines bright.

Chicago 3
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We all have crashes, intentionally and unintentionally. And many will stop by crashes that happen to repair harm and restore the flow and pulse of the “traffic”. However, there are others who will reroute around a crash because there is already help at the scene and still others who will reroute to ensure they make it to their final destination on time.

But in the end we’re all part of the pulse. Each of us has value and purpose whether or not we see it and whether or not others see it.

For me, I believe that while mistakes, harm and accidents happen, they happen for a reason. In most cases, I think without harm or mistakes there is no learning. And none of us are perfect and will all cause crashes and accidents. That’s the humbling part of being human and the only perfect thing about us: our imperfections.

But let us understand that regardless the accident or harm, we are always still part of the pulse…the pulse of the field, society and the world.

Chicago 4
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Forgiving, learning and moving on is the only way to advance in life, as a professional and as a person because whether you want to be or not, your individual self is part of the greater whole.


So amidst the passion, the bustle and the business of life and work, let us not forget that none of us are above reproach. None of us are perfect and that everything we do is a part of the larger pulse of the field, the world and life and that everything that happens for a reason in order to keep the pulse of the field, the world and life going.

Just some nighttime flying musings for today. 🙂

Until next time

Peace, Love and Pandas!

Published by Brian

I am currently the Assistant Director of Student Life for Registered Student Organizations and Late-Night Programming at Michigan State University. After earning my B.A. from the University of Michigan-Flint, I entered the Student Affairs profession. After a few years in the field, I returned to school and earned my M.A. in Educational Leadership-Higher Education Student Affairs from Eastern Michigan University. In my spare time I blog about my thoughts and musings on current issues in higher education, student affairs, digital worlds, identity development and general life inspirations and observations. I also volunteer a lot for my fraternity and multiple regional and national professional associations.

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