What’s On Your Mind?: A Mental Deep Dive

I’ve been on the staff of The Oracle for three semesters now, which is kind of shocking to me, as it feels like much longer. Maybe it’s because I’ve assumed a new position each semester, or maybe time is just moving slowly. People love to talk about how fast time is moving, but I’ve always found those discussions pointless; sometimes time moves fast, and sometimes it moves slow, sometimes it feels like it’s moving fast and slow at the same time, because time doesn’t exist…we made it up.

 But that’s too deep for right now. Right now, I’ve been tasked with writing a column; my third. I was excited for my first opportunity to write a column. I was new to staff and overjoyed to be given 1,000 words to express any opinion or sentiment I wanted to.

 My second column was slightly more daunting; I had written more, gotten to know everyone on staff better. I didn’t want to get too personal, because I wasn’t comfortable with that, but I didn’t want to stay completely impersonal, because then what’s the point of a column? So naturally, I just got angry.

 Which leads to now. On Tuesday morning, I voiced my concern over my column to Features Editor Mahnoor Ali, who instantly responded with “Well, what’s on your mind?”

 At the time I laughed it off, but as I continued to struggle to hone in on anything else, the question kept coming back. What’s on my mind? In short, a lot. In full, as follows.

 Fear is on my mind, at all times. As someone who always has and continues to suffer from anxiety, I’m always nervous about something. These things don’t tend to be the typical things one would find themselves nervous over. My mind stresses more detrimental problems, like car accidents or a sudden inability to breathe, in the same way one stresses over a big test.

 Death is on my mind, a lot more recently. In the past year, I’ve been to more funeral homes than I have in my entire life, most for familial acquaintances, one for my grandmother who meant (and still means) the world to me. I’ve always been a spiritual person, but having death hit so close forces you to think on it a lot more, which is absolutely never fun. My mind likes to remind me of my own mortality no fewer than once a day, but I’ve gotten a little better at learning to ignore it.

 Love is on my mind, despite the fact that at 20 years old I have yet to experience anything close to it. I remember sitting at a Taylor Swift concert when I was a kid and hearing her give a speech on how she makes music for “hopeless romantics,” a title I really took and ran with. That, combined with the fact that I was, for the most part, a closeted teenager, have led to a overarchingly dull love life (or at least, that’s what I tell myself the cause is). I still think about love a lot though, as I’m sure it’s a great emotion that I hope to eventually take part in.

 In contrast, hate is on my mind. I would love to say it’s not, but everyone experiences hate. I hate a lot of things. I hate rainy days, I hate aggressive drivers, I hate seafood, I hate long car rides, I hate men who are entitled…and so on.

 Music is on my mind. Not in a pretentious way— I’m not a musician, in any sense. But my mind turns to music a lot. For a while I tried to keep note of the song that was in my head when I woke up every morning, but I accidentally gave that up quickly. I don’t have a special taste in music by any sense. I used to say I had a “bad” taste in music because it’s mostly saturated by pop, but lately I’ve realized how stupid that is. You’re not better than me because you listen to “music with a message.” At least I have fun. 

That, in a way I’ve deemed poetic enough, is what’s on my mind. To anyone reading this, I challenge you to deep dive analyze your own thoughts; it’s therapeutic, kind of terrifying and a great idea for when you have a column due and nothing else to write.

About Jake Mauriello 100 Articles
Jake Mauriello is a fourth-year journalism and public relations major, with a minor in film and video studies. This is his seventh semester with The Oracle. Previously, he has worked as an Arts and Entertainment Copy Editor, Features Editor and Managing Editor. He dedicates each of his stories to his personal heroes, Taylor Swift and Alexis Rose.