Quo Erat Demonstratum

My junior and senior years of high school, my math teacher, Mr. M, always wrote Q.E.D. at the end of our tests. Q.E.D. is the initialization of the Latin phrase “Quo Erat Demonstratum,” which means “It has been demonstrated.”

It is traditionally used at the end of mathematical proofs, but I’ve also found it useful as a reflection on success in life. After five and a half years of college-0r twelve semesters, I should hope that my education is self-evident. I should hope that the past 12 semesters have demonstrated that I have learned what was expected of me. I hope that I have become, as my institution of higher learning’s motto says, educated to shape my life, my profession, and my society.


I’ve taken 185 credits worth of classes, which is about 60 classes, which sounds about right to me. I’ve lived in a foreign country, had more than ten different roommates-and that’s not counting my Spanish host family, lived in six different places, and changed in so many ways, ways that are often more evident to others than to myself.


I’ve learned so many things. I’ve discovered new things about myself and found new friends-as well as growing closer to some older friends. I’ve fallen in love with new writers-and developed a deeper appreciation of some old favorites. I learned to love poetry-something my teenaged self swore she would never do.


I fell in love with creating clothing and accessories myself instead of buying them. My sixteen-year-old self would totally be judging my twenty-three-year-old self for that; she thought that handmade automatically equaled ugly. Actually, I’m not entirely sure that sixteen-year-old Cecilia would like twenty-three-year-old Cecilia very much. Heck, I’m not sure nineteen-year-old Cecilia would like twenty-three-year-old Cecilia very much.

They would judge the skinny jeans, which is okay because I remember my reasons for hating skinny jeans…before I fell in love with them. (Sorry, Jenny!)

They’d probably wonder about my taste in music. Sixteen-year-old Cecilia would probably be pretty blown away by my interest in Queen, Juanes, and the Gipsy Kings.

The knitting, as previously mentioned, would probably confuse sixteen-year-old Cecilia. Nineteen-year-old Cecilia would just wonder how I finally figured out how to knit.

The desire to go to grad school would probably irk nineteen-year-old Cecilia to no end. “No more school!” she would cry. “You need to get married and do more productive things with your life. You don’t need to write papers or read books. You need a job.”

(I do need a job. I know. The getting married part can wait.)

But twenty-three-year-old Cecilia wants to write papers and read books and go to grad school. She loves learning and wants to keep growing and learning.

She has learned much. And she has much yet to learn.

But the two most important things that I have learned:

“I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.” -Douglas Adams


“In God’s will is our peace.” -Dante Aligheri

It has been demonstrated. And more will be demonstrated in the future.

But for now, gracias a Dios por todo lo que he recibido y lo que recibire.


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