Taking A Step Back

Tonight was my soccer senior night. None of us cried. None of us seemed fazed by it. To us, it had been coming for a long time and yet, at the same time, it had taken us by suprise.

I can’t remember my first soccer practice or my first game. The soccer years blend togethe, leaving behind what I will continue to cherish for years to come. Memories that include everything to do with Lilo from the tampon in the nose to the Carrot game during team bonding to “I’m a star”s, the IU v UNC soccer game and the frantic drive that followed, Janelle’s numerous falls (including her very fake flip that induced a foul), Jocelyn’s comforting anatics during the games, Audrey’s nerve rattling injuries (i.e. spraining her ankle jumping on cement, about new warm-ups for pete’s sake), and so many more. These girls have shaped and influenced my high school years in ways that some may never know. I am proud to have been a Knight for the last four years and hope to return next year at some point to cheer on my family. This chapter of my life may be coming to a close but I know an even better one is just on the horizon, maybe with a certain guy in it! Sorry I just had to sneak that in there!

The most important thing that I have learned from soccer is that no matter what happens in the game, it is just a game. Yes, it is a part of our lives. But when we look back on our lives will losing by one point or not getting that extra time on the field seem like such a big deal. Go ahead and cry about it now. Just let it end there. A famous saying is, “Leave it all on the field.” Sure that covers the basics such as skill and energy but it also means your hate, your anger, your sadness. Those things stay on the field. They shouldn’t hitch hike home. As a player that isn’t perfect, you have to realize that you can’t win them all. You can’t stop every goal or make every kick perfect. You may not even be able to play every game or every minute. What you have to remember that soccer, no matter how much you love it, is a game. Losing doesn’t mean that your life is over, no matter what game it is. Keep your head up and your heart light. It’s amazing how far they will take you.

“Your life is what your thoughts make it.” -Marcus Aurelius

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Brain Mush

I’ve made through half of the first trimester. Only 5 more halves before the end of the year. I’m sure I can do it. If my brain will clear from the boy fog. Boy?! you say. Yes but not in the sense that you are thinking. No, I do not have a boyfriend, nor am I any closer than I was a year ago. I’ve just been thinking about one boy in particular a lot. You guys remember Dave? The tall cute guy from “Written in the Stars”? Well he’s who I’m talking about.

I went and saw him play last weekend (and I am purposely leaving out what sport). One of my friends accompanied me and on the way home we got talking. Ever since that car ride, I haven’t been able to get him out of my head. Every single story I think of, he worms his way into. I can’t focus in class or at home. It’s ridiculous. The conversation gave me hope. She told me that she thought we would make a cute couple, which I think we would but will probably never get the chance. That’s the sad thing. That no matter how much I think about him, I have no way of finding out if he thinks about me.

Which makes Friday even better. Dave and I share one class with each other right now. During that class on Friday, I proved the teacher wrong and was able to get our class an extra point on a quiz. When I looked up to gauge kids’ reaction to the news, I found Dave looking at me. And smiling! As my friend described it, he has a shy smile. One of thoses that makes you feel incredibly special to be on the recieving end of. Well since we sit across the room from each other, we couldn’t really talk so we had a conversation by mouthing words, gesturing and smiling. Confession time. I have no idea what he said! I feel really bad about it but my responses made him laugh. It wasn’t until after the day was over that I thought of emailing him to find out what he had said but by then it was too late. I was just left to drown in my giddiness and later, self-doubt.

I’ve had a crush on him since I first met him in elementary school. We didn’t even go to the same school until halfway through middle school. But I thought he was cute the whole time. After attending the same school we shared snippets of conversations. Small chitchat that probably didn’t mean anything to him but it meant the world to me. Pathetic, I know. The mouthed conversations started in high school, with a few side by side convos thrown in there at varying rates. They always make my day. But when I can’t get a conversation, I settle for eye contact. We probably make eye contact half a dozen times a class period almost every day. He probably thinks I’m crazy. Even I think I’m crazy as I write this.

I don’t know. I just feel like there’s a reason I’ve suffered through this “crush” for almost 8 years. And trust me, I’ve tried to shake it. I’ve tried very hard and every time I think I’m finally done with him, he comes back into my mind when I let my guard down. I guess I just have to suffer through it for another school year and then let time and space do it’s job. It would be nice to have a distraction in the meantime. Its a little hard to focus on Chemistry when all I can think of stories where I’m not just looking at him from across the room. In them, I have the guts to finally do something about my crush. Sadly that isn’t real life and I’m too scared to be turned down. Plus, I have no idea how to strike up a friendship with a guy. Let’s face it. I’m hopeless and sadly enough, I’m okay with it. I get some of the best writing material I’ve had in a while without even having to try.

 

“A single dream is more powerful than a thousand realities.” -J.R.R. Tolkien

Hopes and Dreams

In my AP English 12 class at school we have to write Career Pathway Essays, which are basically trying to prepare us for college essays. Last Friday, our second paper was due and the grades were put in today. Now, something you should know about my English teacher is that he is a grammar nazi. If he ever read my blog, he would probably faint from the amount of comma errors and misspellings that I have. I’m good with that.

Back to my paper. When I was writing it Thursday, my topic was simple to decided and the words just seemed to flow off my fingertips. Sorta like my blog but with less errors. I chose to write about my Disney nursing home that I want to create someday and how it has affected my career choices. It was one of the easiest papers to write that I’ve ever had. Probably because I’ve been thinking about this for five years.

Although I didn’t get a 100% (97 is pretty close), I wanna to share my paper with you guys. This is important to me and I feel like it’s a part of me, just like my boy drama and my qualms about life. So here it is. Enjoy!

Career Pathway Essay #2

“Fantasy and reality often overlap.” These are the wise words of Walt Disney, the creator of the Disney company, the mind behind many childhood characters, and the dreamer who thought of Disneyland and it’s descendant, Walt Disney World. Though he is a part of almost every child’s life, he has a special place in my life. My passion for Disney has led me to want to create a nursing home that is partnered with Disney.

Let me rewind to the beginning. I wasn’t even a year old when I was carried through the gates of Disney World for the first time. It actually goes even further back to my parent’s honeymoon, when my dad scraped together enough money to travel to Florida and see the mouse that started it all. Now fast forward through my last eighteen years through multiple trips to Disney World and Disneyland, through obsessive collecting of anything Disney, through Tinkerbell and Cinderella Halloween costumes to see a man and a mouse take up residence in my heart and my dreams.

I first came up with the idea when my family decided to put my late grandma in a nursing home for the first time. I remember feeling so bored when we went to see her and eventually came to dread the visits. One little spark was all it took. I began to think of ways to better the nursing home experience. Eventually it dawned on me that Disney offered everything I was looking to improve. From there, the spark grew to a flame.

My goal was, and still is, to create a place that fulfills what everyone needs. I want to build my nursing home near the Florida Disney park so that people visiting can also go on vacation. The patients that are still able to walk or function would be able to go to “The Happiest Place on Earth” with their grandchildren and families. The building itself would be equipped to provide almost anything. There would be a pool for exercise, a big open room of kid’s activities, a nature outpost for the bird watchers, and so much more. I picture the wings being set up in blocks with the nurse’s station in the middle so that they can hear and easily reach all the patients. Each block would have a theme such as the Hundred Acre Woods or Finding Nemo. The rooms would all be different. The family could have a little fun putting their relative into a room that fits his/her personality. My goal is to have this created in time to place my parents as patients. I already have their rooms picked out. My dad would be in the Goofy room and my mom in Minnie Mouse’s room.

I understand that this is an outlandish dream. Most people look at me and chuckle when I tell them about it. Despite that, I still believe in it with my whole heart. As Walt once said, “If you can dream it, you can do it.” Disney is something that will always be in my life. It has enchanted me and uplifted me when I needed it most. I know that when I am ninety years old and ready for a nursing home, I want someplace that reminds me that my true age is measured by my shoe size and that never growing up is not such a bad thing. Besides, “It’s kind of fun to do the impossible” (Walt Disney).

Odd Sense of Accomplishment

Today I told myself that I would post something. That I would break my writer’s block and get words down on a page. So here I am. Some of you may have wondered where I had gone, if my blog had belly-flopped, if you would ever hear from me. Others may not have even noticed the absence. Either way, I’m back.

School has picked up for me. It may have something to do with the fact that I seem to losing ground every day. I can go to sleep feeling like I had a productive day and wake up asking myself what exactly I accomplished the day before. Today is one of those days. I didn’t have soccer practice, a treat for doing well on our Tuesday game. So I got to come straight home and stay at home. As soon as I got home, I set to work. I cleaned my toxic bathroom, vacuumed my floor, and had all my homework done by 7pm! … PSYCH! Yeah right! I wish! Those of you who know me would have been questioning who I was if those things were true. In all honesty, I came home and chilled. It might not have been my brightest idea ever, seeing as how it is midnight and I don’t have my one subject of homework complete. But so is life. I made the choice to sacrifice other things to goof off today and that’s something I have to accept. The thing is, I want conflicting things. I want to be an expert on FRIENDS but I also want to be #1 in my class. I want to read YA books but don’t want Janelle to score better than me on every test. These things don’t mesh together and eventually something will have to give. I can already feel myself slipping into a hole. With only three classes a day, you would think I could handle it but no. Today I told my mentor group that I wanted to be #1 and am involved in 10 different clubs/teams. They all stared at me, dumbstruck. One kid asked, “How do you get your homework done?” My response just rolled off my tongue, “It’s easy. I don’t sleep.” The sad thing about that is that’s true. I don’t get sleep. I can function without it, most of the time. Unlike Janelle, I am not the equivalent of a very, very, very upset cat when I get four hours of sleep. It may not be the best for my body but I do what I have to for the things that I love. That’s the catch. As much as I want to be number one, I can’t help but think that Janelle deserves it more. She does her projects on time. Her homework is always complete and precise. Her test scores are usually curve setters. She just doesn’t play the system. She isn’t paying money to take online classes or killing herself on homework. Like me, she procrastinates but unlike me, she snaps out of it much faster. It would be safe to say that I’m jealous of her and I love her at the same time. She is my best friend and I wish her the best in everything she does, even if that means that she beats me.

Mrs. Maag, the teacher that I cadet teacher for, talked to her 4th grade class about something that is true for everyone, no matter what age. She said that every night, when you’re brushing your teeth and you see your reflection, do you think, I like what I see? I don’t mean physically but inside. Did you do the right thing today? Did you laugh at the girl who fell or did you help her up? Did you work on your own homework or help a struggling student with their’s? As she was saying this to her students, I was thinking to myself, How do I see myself? Tonight, when I look in the mirror, I will see a girl who is failing to reach her potential. I see someone who could do so much more if she just used her time wisely. If she was willing to shut off the tv for a week or avoided the library for a month, maybe she could be someone to look at and see a girl to be a role model. I feel go about parts of my life. My cadet teaching means the world to me. I do everything that I can in the classroom but that’s it. It seems to stop when I leave that room. I don’t wanna try anymore. I’m tired of trying and not being able to focus. I’m tired of feeling like I’m letting everyone down. That’s the one thing that I know that I’m good at, placing blame on myself. Even if I don’t deserve it or the speaker didn’t mean it, it takes up camp in my heart and head. For years my mom has been trying to teach me to let things just roll of me like water on a duck’s back. I’ve gotten better about it. Infrequent petty comments don’t mean much anymore. I can handle those. It’s the ones about the way I act or what I say that make me consider never speaking again. They make me want to crawl into myself and just cry. Even if my brain says that I am being ridiculous, that the person didn’t mean anything by it, it still hurts. I think I cause more pain to myself than anyone else. And heaven forbid someone try to bully someone I love. For my teammates, my friends, and my family, I would fight to the ends of the Earth to keep them from getting hurt. No one deserves that which is why I take on the Mom role. A child rarely asks how the mom is doing, unless he wants something or is really, really nice. Taking care of people is my way of stopping people from focusing on me. It’s a way for me to feel good about myself. For example, on Tuesday I played one minute of the Varsity game. Was I upset? A little but the way I look at it is while I was sitting on the bench I was able to talk to, take care of, and console the girls that came off the field. It’s the highlight of my day when I can get someone who’s crying to crack a smile, no matter what wacky stuff I have to do or say to make it happen. Taking care of them is what keeps me looking at the girl in the mirror and thinking, there’s still hope. You can do this. Tomorrow is a new day. Things can change. I can change. Life will go on.

“Isn’t it nice to think that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet?” -L.M. Montgomery

Lasting Friendship

Making friends isn’t something that comes easily to me. I know people who can be best friends with someone after a week. I’m not like that. I take my time to get to know the person, to see if they are worth while, to figure out if I like the way that they treat people. What brings this up is that today my friend, Janelle, and I presented about our time at Hoosier Girls State or HGS. I’m sad to say that we stretched the truth when we said that we would keep the friends that we made for the rest of our lives. In all reality, I rarely speak to my roommates. It’s not that I don’t like them, it’s more that I don’t know what to say. It’s hard to solidify a relationship through texting. There are girls there that have their HGS buddies in their weddings. I may not have been aiming for a maid of honor, but I do miss them and wish that I would have kept better touch right after camp.

I guess I’m lucky that I have 4 best friends. Since we’ve all been friend throughout high school, staying in touch through college shouldn’t be hard. Janelle and I were pondering the possibility of being without our procrastination buddy. We partner up in almost everything and do it at the last minute every time. It’s just how we roll. The idea of not having her to balance me out is scary. Hopefully we will be near each other during college but if not, we will survive and make good use of Skype!

(This may not be my best post, which I blame on the chemistry test I am cramming for!)

“No friendship is an accident.” -O. Henry