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Nature vs. Nurture

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Most people study psychology to figure themselves out. That is what a Professor once said to me. He was right. That is why I chose it, even if I didn’t realize how deep that would go when I did.

I have always been curious about humans. I think everyone is to a degree. They just do not need an actual degree to prove that.

When I first took up psychology, I thought it would be an interesting gimmick to help me get a read on my quirks. For the most part, however, it made me realize how normal I am.

Not insignificant, no, just normal. I had the same everyday desires, urges, wants, and needs as most people in this world. The quirks I was looking for answers to, well those were normal too. Everyone has different ones, of course, but having them is normal.

What I never truly realized, until those Professor’s words were spoken to me, is that I had been looking for something significant. Something that set me apart from everyone else. Conceited? Perhaps, but isn’t that what an ego is all about. Most people want to believe they are significant in some form, otherwise what is the point of all of this? What is the point of your life, if it leads to nothing?

Then I realized I had been viewing this all wrong. The real question was never, why am I more significant than anyone else? No. The real question is, what about me is significant? After all, this all began with ego-centricity, so why would it not center on the ego?

I started my study of Psychology on an us, and I ended it on a me. The true center of my own universe, and the pinnacle question of everyone’s ego. What makes me… me?

“Renny, are you done yet? We need to get going.”

I heard the words come out of my roommate’s mouth, but I didn’t register them. They got pushed to the background. The foreground was the sound of my fingers idly tapping the keyboard, trying to think of how to continue my point.

The search for this answer could have many starting points. However, the culminating point for me always leads to that one day.

“Camren.” This time the sound of my name registered, as Ben nudged my shoulder. “You’ve been typing for hours. It’s time for a break. Besides, we need to go.”

“I haven’t been typing for hours,” I argued. “I’ve been trying to think up what to type.” I didn’t see him do it, but I felt the eye roll behind me. “I saw that,” I remarked.

“Good,” he replied, knowing that I couldn’t have actually seen it. “Then you’ll also see how annoyed I am. Let’s go!” he urged, nudging me from my seat.

“Alright, alright,” I groaned, giving in. “It’s only my future I’m putting to the side for this gratuitous alumni dinner,” I added, sarcastically.

“Good, the future can wait,” he commented, smiling at his own joke. “You get it? Because a future…”

“Yeah, yeah,” I waved him off, letting him know I understood that a future can’t do anything but wait.

“Tough crowd tonight,” he replied, smirking. He threw me my jacket. “You know this dinner you don’t want to attend, well it has all your esteemed Professors who got you to this point.”

“Well then they would understand more than anyone why I would want to skip it to try and write my dissertation,” I noted.

Ben sighed before he addressed me. “Well then skip it,” he said, shrugging.

“You can’t pull a reverse psychology ploy on someone who is about to finish a PhD in Developmental Psychology,” I replied, now being the one to roll my eyes.

“Can’t I?” he noted, looking down at my hands. “You’re the one now holding your jacket. Plan on typing up some pages outside?”

“You threw it at me,” I retorted, amused. “All I’m guilty of is having good reflexes.” I put on the jacket and grabbed my bag.

“I didn’t make you put it on,” he argued, giving me an impish smile, which half entertained me and half made me want to strangle him.

“You win,” I said, throwing up my hands in defeat.

“Like I always do,” he grinned, raising his eyebrows in a cocky manner. “Besides, you never know, you may just meet the research position of your dreams at this thing,” he added, before he opened the door and slipped out.

I didn’t bother to argue that you can’t meet a position, because I knew what he meant. There would be ample important researchers at this alumni event, and making a connection with one of them could possibly snag me a job after I graduated. Though I doubted anyone would care about a soon to be graduate who couldn’t seem to finish her dissertation.

I did one last glance back at our apartment, scanning that everything was good to go before leaving. I saw my computer flashing at me.

Ugh, I couldn’t leave an unfinished thought. It would bother me for the rest of the evening. Glancing down the hall, I could see that Ben was already at the outside doors. Deciding it was worth his frustration, I darted inside and bent over my screen. I typed out my final sentence.

The day we left Earth.

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