Moments to savor: connection through quesadillas

A drawing of two quesadillas being pulled apart. A string of cheese connects them, dripping into a heart shape.
(Ella Lehavi • The Student Life)

So far this semester, I’m pleased to say that I’ve developed better habits. I’m sleeping more (up until the fall, my body would wake itself up at 6:30 a.m. no matter when I went to bed — now I sleep at least until 7), taking intentional time to do something relaxing during the week (which for me means playing piano or guitar) and eating regularly. I’m proud of myself for achieving better balance, both physically and emotionally, but I’m especially proud of the last habit. My friends are surely proud, too. 

Last semester, I was pretty diligent about eating regularly on the weekdays, but for some reason that diligence would fly out of the window on the weekends. I coordinate the music for a club called First Love that meets on Saturday evenings, so around dinnertime, I would be busy making lyric sheets, transporting musical instruments and rehearsing with the rest of the team. Many times, I would just forgo eating.

There was one Saturday when my friend Bet-sua came early to help set up for the night. She entered the room as my team and I were rehearsing, and, knowing that I had spent a decent amount of time beforehand preparing for our club gathering, she asked if I had eaten.

I shook my head, smiling sheepishly as my fingers waltzed across the keyboard, transitioning into our next song. Out of the corners of my eyes I could see my friends looking at me in disbelief, and Bet-sua made a beeline for the door again.

“I’m getting you food,” I remember her saying, and before I could protest, she was gone.

Ten minutes later or so, Bet-sua returned with a whole carton full of food from Collins Dining Hall. I was laughing, but I was also very grateful. “Bet-sua, thank you!” I said, chuckling. “I’ll eat after we’re done rehearsing. I pro-”

Before I could say any more, she lovingly shoved a quesadilla in my mouth. 

It was such a comical experience — being fed a quesadilla by a friend while simultaneously playing the keyboard -– and not missing a beat. As the music rose in intensity, so did Bet-sua and my laughter — or rather, my silent laughter because laughing and chewing do not go well together. 

By the time the song was over, the quesadilla was almost gone. Thanks to Bet-sua, I had unexpectedly eaten dinner. 

I’ve eaten dinner every Saturday since the start of spring semester; I think that bad habit is gone for good. I still share this humorous story, though, because it reminds me how lucky I am to have friends who will take care of me — and even feed me — when my hands are full, literally and figuratively. The quesadilla in that moment was a palpable reminder that this habit of mine needed to change and that I had friends who would keep me accountable if I sat back and did nothing, clacking away on the keyboard instead. It revealed to me just how much my friends cared about me and my eating schedule. And it was plain funny, sparking a humorous point of connection in my friendship with Bet-sua. 

College is busy, that’s for sure, but the beautiful thing is that we are constantly surrounded by people — our own Bet-sua’s — to keep us accountable and make sure we are taking care of ourselves, emotionally and physically. So as the semester continues on, I encourage you to reflect on habits you’ve developed that maybe you need to change. If you aren’t willing to change them yourself, don’t fear — I’m sure your friends will shove a quesadilla in your mouth when they need to. 

Emily Kim PO ’25 is from Irvine, California. She has a newfound love of Frary waffles and currently has the Book of Mormon soundtrack on repeat. 

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