The Backpack with the Broken Pocket

By BRIANNA TIEDEMAN

Adviser

It’s 6p.m. at the Guerrieri University Center on Friday evening. My phone goes off; “I’m here.”

I drop what I’m doing, save my work, pack up my stuff, throw my wallet in my broken backpack pocket, and shrug because I still haven’t fixed the latch I just let my life depend on; credit cards, cash, license, donor ID, Triple AAA card, insurance card. What else could go wrong?

The “I’m here” text later escalates into the verbal “let’s get RedBox” idea and we venture to Walmart, fully confident I will be able to swipe my M & T Ravens Debit Card and make my transaction. What movies are out now, we wonder: Mike and Dave are still looking for wedding dates, the pets are still living their secret lives, and that girl is still on the train.

We picked our RedBox, we have a plan, we want pizza, but what isn’t in my backpack? No wallet. Panic mode. This is hands down a first world problem, but the kicker is world-wide, so keep reading.

The worst feelings in the world are when you lose your whole life (or just your wallet) in one whooping swing of awfulness. Your heart is racing, you want to get angry but you can’t freak out, you want to call everyone and their sister to replace your cards, and ultimately everyone you look at or talk to Is the person who later that night, you are going to blame.

Running through Guerrieri University Center, calling  SU Police, checking and double checking the lost and found; I could not get a handle on myself. The thought of someone stealing my wallet took over and I wanted to give up, call my bank, and go to the MVA at 9 p.m.

Life on earth today perpetuates with a stigma; people are inherently bad, inherently ill-intentioned and inherently selfish. Anyone on campus could be swiping left and right all over my credit cards or stealing my identity, and I failed to reason to think otherwise. Except I decided to, because what else did I have to lose?

The first go-around of searching, nervousness and doubt blurred my ability to ask the people in the building if they saw a wallet that night. I asked the people standing behind a desk, monitoring a sad drawer with other sad lost items, none of which were wallet-shaped, small, and previously belonged to me. The second and last round we checked, I found my faith; my faith in people and in the good, just for this moment. The idea of people, all people being malicious, would not be true tonight.

All it took was a few conversations before I asked an amazing janitorial staff Mr. Baron, and another with the lovely Chick Fil A worker Ms. Gail, who overheard my inquiry. “Girl you are lucky if you just said you lost a wallet, someone just turned one in,” she said.

All of my anxiety diminished, my heart rate slowed, and my faith in my fellow humans rose back up to its normal level, and then some.

Thank you to the staff who heard me out and especially to the kind citizen who respectfully turned my wallet in, as well as my mistake into a lesson, and a new mindset of faith in others. What we put in to our perspective will come out full circle, and what we believe of our society will do the same. Positivity, hope, and maybe a new backpack could go a long way. My backpack may be a little broken, but its pocket is only as strong as its support.

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