Chapter 4: Personal Artifacts

She never had much in this life, but with the simplest things, she made her corner of the world as beautiful as any king’s palace. We may lack riches, but the greatest fortune is what lies in our hearts

Dean Koontz, Odd Thomas


While the different rooms in a person’s home can say a lot about who they are, the personal artifacts found within those rooms can also be useful nonverbal descriptors of that person. For example, the artifacts may make that person feel comfortable in their own environment, powerful or connected to the world around them.

A Source of Comfort

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On my desk in my room sits a small flip book containing Bible verses for every day of the year. At times, I forget it’s even there, since it’s tucked so inconspicuously in the corner behind the door, but I try to read at least one verse every day. Sometimes, life can get to be a little too much for me to handle, especially now, as I’m currently in the throes of preparing for major surgery in May, finishing up group projects and studying for final exams (all while trying to keep at least one ounce of sanity). Reading the verses in this flip book always serves as the perfect reminder to slow down and remember what really matters.

A Source of Power

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I’ve had Crohn’s disease since I was 10 years old, so needless to say, I’ve run the gamut when it comes to pharmaceuticals and conventional medicine. Without going into too much detail, I stopped taking my medication cold turkey (probably not the wisest decision, but whatever) and decided to do something different instead. That was two years ago, and this book has been a lifesaver for me ever since. Not only is it a wonderful source of information about the science behind the Specific Carbohydrate Diet and further research into inflammatory bowel diseases, but it’s also a cookbook itself. I see this book as a source of power, the power to take my health into my own hands and not let some doctor make the final decisions concerning my body.

A Source of Connection

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Throughout the semester, I love to spend a few weekends here and there volunteering with Keep Denton Beautiful, which describes itself as an organization that aims “to engage our community in creating a clean and beautiful Denton” through garden workdays, litter clean-ups around the city, and hosting the Redbud Festival every year. I really enjoy volunteering with them because I believe in what they’re doing as an organization (check them out!). This was the shirt that the volunteers had to wear at this year’s Redbud Festival. I think being plugged into an organization of any kind is one of the best ways to develop long-lasting friendships, relationships and other connections.

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