The What a Thing Chronicles: Prologue

Sarah here, kicking off the newly-minted What a Thing Chronicles with a “guilty pleasure” confession:

I *love* Grey’s Anatomy reruns.

They’re my favorite thing to watch when I can’t fall asleep or when I’m washing dishes to procrastinate a challenging grant proposal or when it’s just been a long day and I need a brain break. 

In season 1, Meredith Grey has this line that’s stuck with me since I first watched the episode back in April 2005 when I was (oh goodness) only 20 years old. She’s talking about getting legal power of attorney for her mother, who has an aggressive case of early-onset Alzeimer’s, when she says: “We’re adults. When did that happen? And how do we make it stop?”

Amen, am I right? 

Long gone are the days of someone else paying the bills, or comforting the crying baby, or figuring out what everyone is having for dinner. Gone are the days of worrying if your crush in 5th period likes you back, of your biggest scheduling issue being catching the school bus every morning, of your biggest health issue being a debate between regular or double-stuffed for your Oreo snack. (But: double-stuffed. Always. Forever.)

We bear a lot of responsibility as adults. Everyone’s burdens are different – what’s light for Anthony might be heavy for David, and when Liz is having an easy time, Angie might be having a rough go. But we all have burdens, and we all have really difficult seasons of life.

And then y’all have made the incredibly courageous and difficult decision to add full-time college into the mix. Even with a choose-your-own-schedule, go-at-your-own-pace, have-a-CCA-to-cheer-you-on, it is HARD. 

Again, amen. 

So welcome to the What a Thing Chronicles. 

Back in 2016, the illustrious Reagan Pugh joined the team as the first CCA after me. Reagan’s super power is stopping to smell the flowers – or in the case of his students, to celebrate the little and big moments. And when he does this, Reagan always comments … what a thing. 

What a thing that Alyssa earned her Bachelor’s degree three days before her first child was born. 

What a thing that Anthony is five weeks away from earning his Bachelor’s degree while working full time night shifts as a corrections officer – and being a father of two.

What a thing that Julia brought in Valentine’s Day treats for everyone to brighten our days. 

Reagan and I used to publish a biweekly video series celebrating you all; while we don’t have his video skills on the team anymore, we do still have your incredible achievements, triumphs and victories to celebrate regularly. That’s what we’ll do here.

Every other week, we’ll write up a short piece that celebrates all the cool goings-on at PelotonU since we last wrote. Sometimes we’ll also have funny pictures, or cool stories, or interesting stuff for you to read. I promise to include as many Batman photos as I possibly can – but Auntie Briana and Proud Mama Holly’s instagrams are available for your daily fix of our unofficial mascot. 

Why are we doing this? Because college is hard enough already, and what you all are doing – fitting school into your schedules alongside work, raising children, your families, and your own needs – is even more challenging. 

But not impossible, which you prove day in and day out. 

And that, my dear Pelotonians, deserves to be recognized and celebrated. 

Welcome to the story we’re writing together.

Welcome to the What a Thing Chronicles. 

Cheering for you,