The Charger Blog

Charger Blogger Reflects on Ways to Destress

Beatrice Glaviano ’26 discusses change, growth, and destressing over Thanksgiving break, and she offers encouragement to her fellow Chargers.

December 05, 2023

By Beatrice Glaviano ’26

Beatrice Glaviano ’26 (left) and her friends.
Beatrice Glaviano ’26 (left) and her friends.

Thanksgiving Break, Day #1:

Exam. Lab report. Dad. Home. I will not lie and tell you that I wrote anything for this day, but instead give you those brief points as a summary.

Thanksgiving Break, Day #2.

[Author rubs her face, taking a seat in her chair] Hey guys.

I will let you all know that I’m running on two cups of coffee, a homework marathon (Anatomy and Orgo), and frankly what seems to be pure Christmas spirit as I’m ready to just deck my apartment out in the most sparkly stuff ever. In other words:

It’s been a rough week.

I’m pretty sure that it was a mix of both burnout, my menstrual cycle, and literally the impending doom of a formal lab report for my chemistry lab. However, no matter how much yoga I’ve done or how many squats I’ve managed, the good ol’ seasonal depression is back to haunt me. Because I knew this would happen, I have been coping in several ways, such as:

  • Knitting
  • “Everything is fine, I’m fine, it’s fine” (I do not condone this in the slightest)
  • Playing Christmas music
    • Turkeys don’t fix sad, but Dean Martin does
  • Lots of naps
  • Buying myself some stuff for my health and heart (this time, it was skincare and collagen peptides)
  • Listening to new music
  • Enjoying time with friends and making sure to grow into myself
  • Doing things I enjoy doing

But for the most part, I felt really small. Not physically, but as a person. I felt small because the things that make Beatrice, Beatrice, had started to wilt a little bit. I give a lot into my schoolwork, into jobs, and my duties as a friend, the eldest child, the leader, the gym person, the advocate, and the everyday human being. It’s tiring, to say the least, and it’s hard to be myself when so much is going on.

I promised these blogs would be real with all of you, so here’s that realness.

About this time last year, nothing was really going right. I’m not sure if my body is reliving those memories or not, but it’s something that has come to mind one or two times. I was basically about to “fail” out of chemistry, I had no clue what I was doing or what path I was choosing because I was still a forensic science major who hated learning about forensics, and my health was rocky. So, I have no clue if those memories or events are contributing to the seasonal sad or if I just need to lay in the sun for two hours straight listening to an audiobook.

But if there is one thing I learned is that when, and you will, lose yourself, it’s okay to not look for a while.


Beatrice Glaviano ’26 looks forward to enjoying some mashed potatoes and squash.
Beatrice Glaviano ’26 looks forward to enjoying some mashed potatoes and squash.

Because you grow the most without meaning to. If you look for a past version of yourself, you’ll only find whoever you were instead, rather than who you could be.

Yes, I’m not doing the best, but I fight for myself relentlessly. I managed to squat 165 pounds at a bodyweight of roughly 115. I got a 96 on my anatomy exam because I believed that I could. I can do hard things, and I needed to remind myself that I am worth that effort.

Since I went back home for Fall Break, I’ve been going to my home gym again. It’s been good to go back too – familiar faces and all, knowing the equipment like the back of my hand and how many times the barbell saw the tears that nobody else did. But what I wasn’t expecting was for someone to walk up to me (someone I knew) and tell me:

“It’s so good to see you!” She said, bubbly and ecstatic. “You’ve grown into yourself – you look a lot more comfortable.”

And that just sort of...hit me.

It hadn’t been for nothing, after all. The studying, the change of major, all the chances I took on myself having no clue what could happen – a change had been made, and, honestly, I am so grateful that I am not the same person as I was before. The past version of me wasn’t bad, and sometimes I miss her optimism, her pure joy, and her perceptions, but several things needed to be acted on in order to progress in my life.

So, as someone who used to fear change, it was a huge moment for me to understand that growth would be predictable and that in itself is perhaps one of the best things life could offer me:


Change of mindset. Change of clothes. Change of hair or perfume. I can do the hard things, and I’m not going to let cold weather get the best of me. Not when I have plenty of life to live and breathe into.

It’s time for hot chocolate, Christmas decorations, the heartiest laughs, and the best of friendships you’ve ever seen in your sad life, Depression.

Fight me.

Thanksgiving Break, Day #3.

[Playing Kanye West’s “Runaway”]

Today is considerably better than yesterday, probably because I didn’t bury myself in work again. I knitted, hit the gym, watched the rest of the movie I’m supposed to for bioethics (it’s an assignment), read part of CH.17: Cardiovascular Emergencies for EMT I, and now I’m here.

I’m on Thanksgiving break, man. It’s okay for me to take a break. I’m allowed that, at the very least.

Michael came up to me in the gym. I met him yesterday, and I was happy to make his acquaintance. He told me how strong I was. I don’t really think that he knew how far that compliment went, really. Today, I felt really weak in the gym – despite it being leg day. I managed about four reps of 135 and-

“Nope. Not today. Nu-uh.”

And it wasn’t because I wasn’t willing to put in the work (I went on to do a 4x10 of 115 superset with ten jump squats), but because my spine was about to throw a fit. I go to the gym for my physical, mental, and emotional health, and if my back is not okay with something that I’m trying to do, I will not make it do so.

There is a difference between soreness and pain, and being able to understand that difference can be very helpful.

Thanksgiving Break, Day #4:

Author, fueled on coffee and ready for the sugar high of the century: “IT’S TURKEY DAY EVERYONE, RISE AND SHINE!”

Good morning, good morning everyone! I’ve noticed this blog series (and maybe the blogs overall) are steadily becoming more and more like a podcast transcript rather than a written entry. Either way, I’m having a lot of fun.

Today, it’s sunny with only a few clouds in the sky and dudes, I am feeling better than ever. I took the day off yesterday from studying or doing any real academic-based work, and frankly, I really needed that. While I will be getting some school stuff done today, it’s going to be a gradual transition into it rather than a full-blown slam-study session.

Also, it’s Thanksgiving: I have people to hug and food to eat. Assignments can wait.

Croissants are a Thanksgiving favorite.
Croissants are a Thanksgiving favorite.

So far, I’ve spent the morning writing little “Thank You” notes to my friends and family, as that’s something I genuinely love doing every Thanksgiving given the holiday’s meaning. And, it’s been going really well. I’m really, truthfully grateful that I get to be a part of people’s lives for whatever amount of time that I’m allowed with them. So many of the people I’ve ever met in my life have taught me so many different things by just being themselves. I wonder how many people I’ve impacted by being myself, or even writing these blogs. I know a lot of entries can be hard reads as they involve a lot of hard topics, but I like writing them not only because I’m a poet at heart, but I also want to be someone on this campus who people know understands the struggle of being a student, just trying to do the whole “adult” thing.

Being a legal adult while trying to be a professional adult while trying to allow yourself to be the kid you wanted to be because you have “adult money” now from your “adult job” is hard.

Some days, it comes down to buying new skincare over good groceries. Others, it’s rapid-firing assignments because your procrastination got out of control. My procrastination, actually, is probably one of the worst on the planet as I typically get everything (assignments) in on time.

Key word: on time. That’s all I will say on the topic.

Anyhow, back to the topic of Thanksgiving. In the Glaviano household, there are always a few key moments to Thanksgiving that happen every year:

  1. Dry Turkey: A classical recurrence of “Don’t tell Mom” and obnoxious gravy pouring
  2. Macy’s Day Parade
  3. Washing the dishes together
  4. Pie. All the pie, and all of the sugar crash.
  5. Insane cousin shenanigans
  6. Football at all costs
  7. The smell of my aunt’s perfume and the twinkle in my uncle’s eye
  8. The “kids” table vs “adult” table (I have been knighted as an “adult”, so I have “adult” table rights, I just don’t use them.)
  9. Everyone dumping their stuff in my sister’s room (“Why is it always my room?”)
  10. Army crawling away from the table does not, in fact, work (we have tried for years)

Needless to say, Thanksgiving in our household is always a riot. I’m pretty sure that I’ve mentioned my favorite foods already, but I’m going to list them again anyways:

  1. Sweet potato casserole. (Yes, the period is needed)
  2. Turkey
  3. Stuffing (we get the boxed stuff, but I still like it)
  4. Pecan Pie

Boom. You know “Girl Dinner?” This is my “Girl Thanksgiving” in a nutshell. Over the past couple of years, I’ve realized that the holiday is less about the food, but more so, instead, it is about seeing my family and catching up with all of my relatives. So much has happened this year that I am so, so stupidly grateful and happy for, and I cannot thank life enough for the opportunities it’s given me to grow through. While not all of the experiences I went through were pleasant, I’m still happy that they happened. Instead of thinking “Why is this happening to me?” I changed my thoughts into “What can I learn from this?”, and that really helped change my perspective on things.

Thanksgiving is really a great time to think about things as a whole, I think. The entire day, I’ve just sat in gratitude. Even though we only had three people over, the house felt just as full as if we had 20. Family will always be family, and that’s something that really stuck out to me this year.

It’s also been brought to my attention that I’m now the “mom” friend of the group. I wasn’t very surprised by this, seeing that I have four plants, bake a really good vegan banana bread and sweet potato casserole, and have an alarming number of sweaters accompanied by a chronic caffeine addiction.

I’m 19 and 27 at the same time and it’s a little weird.

I am incredibly grateful, however, for the friends that I have made this year and the friendships that I have maintained. As a pre-med kid, keeping in touch with people – or even myself – can get a little tricky. Oftentimes, I find myself giving people a ‘heads up’ that I won’t be able to reach out for the next couple of days because I’m studying or going on a massive homework slam. Either way, I’m extremely privileged to know the people in my life because they add so much to it and genuinely make me strive to be a better person.

There are other things I’m grateful for too, of course: a healthy body, the ability to go to a good school and learn what I want to, my parents’ sacrifices – the list could go on. Overall, this Thanksgiving season I found myself wrapped up and blessed in gratitude and pure joy for what I have. Despite whatever is happening in your life, there is always something to be grateful for, even if it’s small. Coming to campus after the holiday really helped me find grounding in my academics again, and just seeing the University again, well...

It was inspirational.

I hope that you all are having a good week, and that you find peace in the cooler weather. Please feel free to reach out with any comments, questions, or possible concerns to or my personal email,

I am grateful for all of you.
With peace, love, and all the peanut butter,

Beatrice Glaviano ’26 is a nutrition sciences major at the University of New Haven.