Community. That’s what comes to mind when you think of any of these school clubs. And I suppose AMA has been that for me too. However simple that sounds, there are a myriad of other key aspects that makes AMA more than a community for me. Like a wheel, every tiny bolt and screw is vital to keep it turning. And these aspects? Well, they are just as vital.

The last one year has been a tough one, hasn’t it? We’ve all experienced real chaos. Chaos so anarchic that perhaps even the best dragon slayer ought to have struggled in this fight for order. And with struggling comes the possibility of loosing oneself. Of forgetting why you joined the fight in the first place. Which brings me to the first key aspect of this community, finding oneself.

I’ve more than discovered who I am through the weekly sessions AMA holds. This community has taken me through the journey of finding my inner child, and perhaps finding laughter and joy, humor, in the most unlikely of places. As Carl Jung would often remark, the inner child is the source of strength, hope for the future, playfulness, innocence and creativity. That is not to say I’m finally over my cynical self. But perhaps, I’m ready to embrace my shadow and with it, find myself fully. Amazing Minds, has done that for me. The members of this community have also been and will always be, the pillars around which I discover who I’m meant to be.

Speaking of community, maybe I should mention my favorite thing about this one. The friendships. I’m what most would label a loner. Or at least, I once was. Those close to me would often joke that maybe I’m scared I won’t be able to converse. Because well, everything they say always goes over my head (with my height and all). So friendships were tough too. Until I finally made a friend. To be clear, the shortest friend a girl can have. You wouldn’t be able to imagine the joy of finding someone shorter than you. Ours was an instant click! Like Octavian Augustus finding his very own Agrippa, a historically beautiful friendship was formed! The first thing she said, my new friend, is that people only grow until they’re perfect. It didn’t take us that long to reach perfection I suppose.

She was a first of many. Friends keep dropping from all corners of the here. Like bees attracted to the sweetness of an accepting community. I’ve been known to drag my “non-AMA” friends to the sessions. Entice them to the receptiveness of our community. And only a couple of hours into the sessions, you can tell they’ll stick around. Because AMA not only educates, but creates awareness for issues affecting young people and helps you understand how to navigate the complicated landscape of young adulthood.

My utmost favorite part of the sessions will always be the beginning and the ending. They say, great is the beginning, but greater is the ending. I enjoy listening to everyone’s narrations of what their weeks have been like when the sessions start. But nothing would ever beat listening to their “gratefuls” and wishes at the end. It’s magical. All of it. And most leave you with a sense of hope and satisfaction. These words. Thankful words, show you a little light. Not at the end of the tunnel, but somewhere in between. And perhaps an even brighter light at the end of it.

You asked what AMA has meant for me this last year? Well, there’s so much to tell. I couldn’t possibly fit it all here. The sessions are empowering. They are uplifting. These sessions, are the most terrific experience of my campus life. We all look forward to them. And it’s my hope new students get a chance to experience that too.

By Stacy Mully

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