Photo by Milan Loiacono
As the sun sets on a long day of graduate school and internships, Marina Sangit settles in with her favorite notebook and her bullet journal.
She writes poems and short stories, journals and draws.
“I think some of my best creative writing — which is one of my coping mechanisms and my outlets — is when I’m by myself at night,” Sangit said.
Sangit is a graduate student at the School of Public Policy, a Seaver Student Affairs intern for health, wellness and resilience, the president of the International City Management Association, and an intern for the county and California Democratic Assemblymember Shirley Weber.
Sangit said she carves out time to care for her own interests and well-being after typical working hours.
“I think the evening time is quieter,” Sangit said. “And with the nature of my roles, I have to engage with so many people and so many students, so it can be hard to have that really necessary alone time where I can reflect and decompress and be with my feelings.”
Sangit said she began using her nights to be creative when she started writing at age 8.
“I was the type of girl who would have to hide reading books at night from her parents,” Sangit said. “I think I’ve always been, by nature, sort of drawn to being creative in the evening.”
Sangit’s desire for a creative and therapeutic evening is in part due to her family dynamic.
“When I was younger, my parents would work night shifts because they are nurses,” Sangit said. “So I had to do something to entertain myself.”
As she has grown up, Sangit said this habit has become more frequent.
“I’ve started [writing] a lot more now that my days have been so saturated with just being my professional self, and at night I can just kinda be my nonprofessional self,” Sangit said.
Sangit said it has taken her a while to figure out how to balance self-care and creative writing with the demands of everyday life.
“Sometimes [school] can overshadow the importance of taking care of the things that feed your spirit,” Sangit said. “I think school can feed your spirit, but there are other more important ways that you can feed the soup for your soul.”
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