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I'm Thankful for Quiet

Joined: 11/24/2010
Posts: 51
It’s quiet here, in this college library, where I sit and write without interruptions. Peace, quiet, contentment: these three things I cannot take for granted. I say this because I know all too well the chaos, the stress, and the realness of what goes on outside this sanctuary of tranquil solitude. Beyond this building there is a commotion going on with people trying to get to work, there are wars going on in distant places, and there is strife between men. But here, there is peace, there is quiet, and I feel content.

I am a twenty-four year old freshman college student. I’ve had a late start it seems like, yet in a way, I feel that it was necessary for me to put off academia until now, because now I can appreciate it in a better way. For four and a half years I served in the United States Marine Corps. Within that time I went on two seven-month long deployments to Iraq and one deployment to Afghanistan. Between these deployments I trained, tried to have a personal life, succeeded in getting married, and fortunately I survived to see my wife again and to move on with a new life with her.

There are a lot of things I’m thankful for. I’m grateful to have a lovely wife who supports me and makes my life warm and more meaningful. I’m thankful for real food that is cooked in a real kitchen, running water, a real shower, and a comfortable bed at night. These things I used to take for granted because I grew up living in a country where, for the most part, these things are expected. It is hard to imagine a world without these simple pleasures. For most of us we see a lot of these things as necessities. Yet the places I’ve been to in Iraq and Afghanistan, I didn’t always get these things, and I witnessed other people who didn’t have it as good as we do here. The sad truth of our society is, we don’t realize how good it really is, unless we step away from it into a different world.

Although I’m thankful for these things, there is nothing I am more grateful for than the solitude I feel as I write this. Each morning I have the freedom to wake up and drive to this college. Every morning I get here early, so that I can find a quiet spot in the library where I can challenge and expand my mind in ways other than the ways of war. Here I can sit and read such things as literature or philosophy, and I am able to ponder the ideas of the scholars before me. I am no longer expected to be a warrior. And I am not so sure now what exactly I am called to be from now on, but for now I’ll sit here quietly, soaking up the serenity.
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Comment by DarkStar49

Joined: 5/28/2009
Posts: 332
I enjoyed your essay and your personal perspectives. Like they say....better late than never! Everything happens for a reason, and maybe if you had not started college late, your appreciation for every waking day may not have been so present?! Thank you for serving our country and putting your life on the line in the name of freedom!
Posted: Tuesday, December 14, 2010 3:11:32 AM
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Comment by bugcandy

Joined: 11/5/2008
Posts: 286

Your essay won's November Student Writing Contest.

There are a few things to send you.

As the winner, you get...
1) Kodak Gallery store credit
2) Stage of Life T-shirt
3) Stage of Life Pen
4) Featured Writer status on the site.

Please use the Contact Us page to get in touch so we can send you the right sized T-Shirt, Kodak Gallery store credit, etc.

Also, we'll be issuing a press release via PR Newswire. Some questions about this...
a) May we name you as the essay winner? What is your full name?
b) What school/college do you attend?
c) How did you find out about the essay contest?
d) Do you have other thoughts to share about why you entered the essay contest?

Congrats, again, and let me know if you have any questions. Great essay!


Eric Thiegs
Stage of Life LLC
Posted: Monday, December 20, 2010 3:45:37 PM
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Comment by pgarbero

Joined: 10/19/2010
Posts: 44
Thank you sir for your service to our nation. I plan on making the military my career and hopefully I'll get into West Point. Go Army! Beat Navy!
Posted: Monday, December 27, 2010 7:07:47 AM
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Comment by jasoncaleb

Joined: 11/24/2010
Posts: 51
Well i hope the best for you and that you have a good successful endeavor in making it your career.
Posted: Tuesday, December 28, 2010 4:08:52 PM
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Comment by xxDisneyChildxx

Joined: 12/31/2010
Posts: 2
I was moved by your thoughts. Though, I have yet to see much of the world or do anything like you've done, I know of places a lot less unfortunate than what I have. Thank you so much for serving and protecting all of us here in this blessed country. You REALLY have contributed and there are tons of people who you'll never meet that are thankful and greatful to men and women as courageous as you.
Posted: Friday, December 31, 2010 2:08:31 AM
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Comment by Guest

Joined: 10/30/2008
Posts: 2,760
Impresisve brain power at work! Great answer!
Posted: Saturday, December 31, 2011 4:47:31 AM
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Comment by Guest

Joined: 10/30/2008
Posts: 2,760
An intelligent point of view, well exeprssed! Thanks!
Posted: Saturday, December 31, 2011 5:48:13 AM
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Comment by Guest

Joined: 10/30/2008
Posts: 2,760
Aritlces like this are an example of quick, helpful answers.
Posted: Saturday, December 31, 2011 9:47:54 AM
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Comment by Guest

Joined: 10/30/2008
Posts: 2,760
Keep these articles coming as they've oneped many new doors for me.
Posted: Saturday, December 31, 2011 1:26:46 PM
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Comment by Guest

Joined: 10/30/2008
Posts: 2,760
Action requires kwonledge, and now I can act!
Posted: Monday, January 2, 2012 4:55:34 AM
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