Prompt: What is in the sky?

Have you ever wondered what is contained in the stars above you? It was said in a legend long ago that each star was an ancestor; another said that each one was a king or a queen or a leader of some sorts. To move into contemporary legends, some say that the stars are other life forms living among us… watching us. If you asked a practical person, such as a scientist, what stars are, they would explain to you that they are simply just collections of gas in space.

I feel as though the question “what is in the sky?” is more complex than it looks. If you take the time to think about it, you will come to realize that many things are up above us. The first things you will think of will be the most visible, such as birds and clouds, or the moon and the stars; however there are also conceptual items that seem to be in the mass of the unknown, such as prayers, sorrows, wishes, and even a higher power who controls the world in which we live.

For those of you that believe in a God, you know that when prayers are said, they are always sent up – never down – because up is where the heavens lie, and down is where despair awaits. You also know that your God is far above the clouds, invisible to the human eye, way beyond where our galaxy dares to reach. To ask for a blessing, you beg the planets and the stars to align in a fashion that brings you what you wish for. Everything that you ask for is sent to a place in the sky with hopes that something miraculous will be sent back down to you.

As for sorrows, people often use the phrase “letting go”. Whether letting go is acted out in a physical manner, such as writing down your burdens on a Chinese lantern and watching it float on into the sky, or figuratively, such as taking a deep breath and allowing your troubles be exhaled to a place beyond your reach, you are pushing something away from you in an upwards manner. As people, we feel the need to have balance in our lives, and it is believed that the sky brings that feeling of relief to us.

If I can bring you back to the image of stars for a moment – have you noticed that the number of stars visible is different in every part of the world? In America, you see quite a few, yet in the populated areas of China you see next to none, and then in Canada it seems as though the sky is lit up with glowing freckles because of the millions on millions of stars that you can see. If one of the legends is correct, that the stars truly are our ancestors whom have gone before us, then does that mean that one area has more than another?

I don’t want to seem as though I am full of ignorance. I know that pollution and gasses and such affect the visibility of the sky above us, but just think with me for a minute; pretend those facts don’t exist. Perhaps the places with the most stars are where our ancestors feel the most at home. I believe that I would much rather look out at the mountains for eternity instead of a busy city.

So if you were to ask me what I believe is in the sky, I would tell you so much more than the stars and the moon and the planets and the birds. I would tell you that everything I have ever dreamed, every prayer I have ever said, every wish I have ever made at 11:11 and every burden I have ever pushed away from me. Part of me is up in the sky above me, as is part of every other organism here on this earth, and maybe after we finish our time here, we will be reconnected with our lost pieces up above.

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A poem: Infinite

what would you say if I told you I was infinite?
would you laugh at me and kiss my face,
or would you look into me deeply and understand
my soul
and how it yearns for you
and screams for you
and aches for you?
if I explained that it was your love
that allows my existence
would you put your arms
around my waist
or rather
around my throat?
and when I put my lips to your ear
and whisper my heart to you
will you take in my words
and let them swallow you whole,
consuming every part of you?
but also, when I ask you to watch
the sun go down
will you tell me to stay with you for the night
to watch it come back up again?
baby please, I’m begging you to tell me,
will you love me forever
and hold me tonight
and each and every night to come?
my dear, if you would, I will live forever,
because my infinity is you.

Book idea

So I’ve been thinking more and more about what I want to do with my life.

So I’ve been pretty stressed out lately.

I think that I want to go into journalism. I enjoy writing quite a bit and I could see myself doing it for years ahead. Which is good, because I’ve been told to do what I love, and I love writing stories. I have also been thinking about what the one big thing is that I want to do.

I’ve decided that is to write a book.

I have a few ideas, but this one really stuck out to me, so I figured I’d share it with you.

I travel quite a bit, so I get to experience many different types of people and cultures. I was thinking that it would be interesting to really dive into these cultures and learn what makes them different and similar from my own. I would interview random people from around the world and ask them one simple question: “What’s your story?”

I would collect these interviews and put them all together in a book. People would be able to read all about how a man became homeless, or how a couple met, or how a store had been in a family for over 100 years. These stories would show the similarities and dissimilarities between cultures. It would prove how we are all powerful and how the simplest of people can still inspire others. It would be beautiful!

I’d love to know people’s thoughts on this idea – I love feedback.

Also if you feel like venting or sharing, comment your own story. Like I said, even the simplest of people can inspire others.

Pay attention to me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I love attention. What girl doesn’t? It’s gotta be one of the best things to receive. To have someone look at you like they truly want to talk to you, to have them compliment you, to feel wanted for just a moment. It is something that almost every person craves. It’s an addiction – once someone gives you that attention, you just want more and more.

I’ve noticed that it is one of the quickest things to disappear in relationships as well. I’m talking about all types of relationships – marriage, dating, friends, siblings, etc. The attention we give a person at the start just fades away more and more as we get closer with him or her. At the start you feel this need to connect with them, this subconscious need to always impress them. Yet as you get comfortable around the person, that feeling gradually goes away. You stop working as hard to impress them, stop working as hard to give them what they want.

I believe that’s the problem with so many relationships. Both parties crave attention, but neither is willing to give the other the time of day. In a dating situation, the boy stops saying good morning every morning, or doesn’t compliment what he likes about her. In a friendship, they forget about the other’s opinions and feelings. Parents forget that their kids are growing up. We don’t stop and think about the other person – a common quality of all people.

I need attention. I can honestly admit that. I like feeling like someone truly wants to talk to me. Like I am worth the effort. I also like putting in effort to talk to another person. I will gladly give a person my full attention if they want it. It’s what fuels a relationship. Two people will not connect if they cannot pay attention to one another. You know the cliche story, “I just couldn’t take my eyes off her, she was just so beautiful.” That is still a super common way for a guy to pick up a girl; by simply giving her attention.

I’m not a love doctor or anything, but if I had to give one solution to mending broken relationships, it would be to start paying attention to the person as much as you did when you first met them. You should never stop trying to impress the person. If they mean that much to you, you should want to do things to keep them close. That first moment means so much more than people think it does – that first moment of making eye contact, it’s the start of something that will never be the same. We as people need to recognize that and work with it, using it to our advantage.

We need to be loved as much as we need to love.

12 hours later

I remember hearing the big news for the first time. I remember my palms sweating profusely, no matter how often I wiped them on my worn out used-to-be-black leggings. I was anxious, I could feel my heartbeat in every vein in my body; every single one was throbbing, aching as if each one were thirsty for blood to pump through it, begging for relief.

Sitting on the delicate white paper every hospital is known to have, I was told that I was not going to be okay. It was an odd feeling, being told that I could die young – yet I felt that everyone had that possibility; the possibility for all of your lights to go out while they should be shining bright, to malfunction. However, my chances of it occurring were significantly higher than the average 15 year old girl. I was told that I may not even make it to 18. That my future plans of traveling through Europe and writing a book would never occur. From there, all I remember is falling into myself. The world shut down and so did I; my sight vanished and I was swallowed by infinite darkness while at the same time my ears lost all power of hearing voices and usual noises, only a soft, eternal ringing that would drive anyone to insanity. It was astounding how one sentence threw me into the black hole of my mind so quickly, a place that I had been trying to escape for years.

“Six times more likely to die being active,” were the words that came out of Dr. LaPage’s mouth; the eight words that would stick with me like that gorilla glue people’s dad’s always buy at Home Depot to fix things that usually need a lot more than glue. I knew I had a problem, I had known for a while. I just didn’t know what the problem was – used-to-be-troubled kids have lots of problems, but none of those problems involve terminal illnesses or defects within the body, right? Dr. LaPage told me that the problems weren’t connected, that usually darkness inside the brain doesn’t cause a heart to not beat properly. I remember sitting on that white paper, hearing the whispers of it tearing every time I moved, and thinking that they were kind of connected. When I would run with my friends and I couldn’t keep up, the darkness would spread to more than just my brain. I guess my organs weren’t fans of the body they were placed in.

The dreams started a couple weeks after the big news. Constant nightmares of surgeons looking directly over me, their eyes drilling holes in mine while they cut my body open, and then the eternal ringing, which sounded very much like a pulse monitor when a person decides it’s time to let go.

“It’s all up to you honey,” the fairly familiar doctor said at my next appointment. “It’s your choice if you want the surgery.”

I wasn’t very good at decisions. I was even worse at dying, not that anyone could necessarily be “skilled” in it. As the days went on I started to notice things with body I hadn’t thought much of before. A trip up the stairs would leave me desperately gasping for air, my lungs screaming out. Getting out of bed would send me into a whirlwind of dizziness, not knowing which way was up and eventually started putting me back to sleep as my body hit the ground. Most of all, I started feeling my heartbeat. I felt it skip beats, I felt it stop, I felt it race as if I was running out of blood. I had no control over what was going on in my body, I was completely powerless over what was going to happen to me.

Except the one choice I hadn’t made. The one I had dreamt about so many times that I could physically feel the cold, sanitized knives slitting into my skin. The choice between maybe living, and dying.

“I want the surgery. I cannot risk it anymore.” I finally made a decision.

“Thank God, I was getting very, very worried.” The surgeon was happy I guess. “The procedure will be approximately four hours.”

My entire family came to the event. To celebrate the fact that in approximately four hours I’ll come back out good as new, as if I was something that could be that easily fixed.

I wasn’t.

Twelve hours later a nurse woke me up, and I was surrounded, dazed, and extremely confused. I felt as if I was lying on a bed of recently sharpened knives – it was a pain that I could not comprehend nor put into words because the morphine was still pumping through my veins and controlling my thoughts. It was a pain that made me want to fall back into darkness, fall back into a place that could take all feeling away. Yet, my family was insistent on keeping me awake, as were the quite concerned nurses. Eventually, someone whispered that I was okay.

“You made it honey,” said my mom as she kissed my forehead.

Although death still haunts me, it is kept away for now. I won a battle that I never expected myself to be in. Finally my mind followed the sun and I allowed it to bathe in the soft rays and for the first time, live.

What Happened to Classic Textbooks?

Hey guys! So with classes starting up I thought I’d write a little bit about the transition from classic, big old textbooks to online sites or tablet devices. There has been so much controversy over this concept, so I thought I’d throw in my two cents. 

iPads are wonderful things. They really are. I currently have an iPad Mini and am planning on upgrading to the next one they put out! I’m also completely addicted to my MacBook Pro – I love it so much I put it in my blog name. However, when it comes to studying, I would much rather have a heavy book in front of me than my cute little iPad. Here’s my reasons why: 

Distractions, distractions, distractions. I can’t think of one time I’ve gone on my tablet or laptop without checking one of my many social media connections. It’s just so quick and easy, I just have to tap a little blue bird or type a “t” into the search bar and Twitter is up in front of me. And then I get to scrolling though my timeline, clicking on photos my best friend put up, and suddenly 20 minutes have gone by. And oh wait… what was I supposed to be doing again? Having textbooks only available online is just asking for students to get distracted. With everything flashing at our faces, how couldn’t we? 

What does this word mean? I don’t know, Google it. Google! What an absolutely amazing thing. I don’t know where I’d be without it. It makes life so easy… maybe a little too easy? When we’re in grade school we are taught all of these wonderful reading techniques. Those things you’re supposed to do when you don’t know what a word is, or you don’t understand a sentence, or something like that. Sure, when I’m outlining a textbook I easily could pick up my phone and google the definition, but it still leaves me the option of trying to figure it out myself. On the iPad, you can simply hold down your finger on a word and the option “Define” will come up – giving you the definition in a millisecond. You didn’t even have to open up Safari. How convenient. 

Hey did you read chapter 12? No, I Sparknoted it! If you walk into an english class and ask “How many of you have used Sparknotes instead of actually doing a reading assignment?” I would assume at LEAST 60% of the class would raise their hands. Sparknotes, along with Google, is another wonderful tool – but it is also another tool that is extremely taken advantage of. I’m guilty of it. I was NOT feeling like reading 1984, by George Orwell that night. Sparknotes worked sort of well for that class discussion. But the bottom line is, Sparknotes is not enough. Having our books online just makes sites such as Sparknotes or Cliffnotes more readily available. From articles I’ve been sent home with in my AP Psychology & Economics classes, studies have shown that online reading is making our generation unable to comprehend complex texts. A lot of that blame can be placed on devices such as iPads or Surfaces. 

So if it was up to me, we’d all be stuck with heavy old textbooks. But hey, there’s nothing wrong with using online tools for help. I just believe that to be well educated people, we cannot rely on technology. 

 

School is a Priority, but How High Up Should It Be?

Hi everyone! So I’m currently in Kentucky for a funeral, and because of that I am missing the first couple days of school. I’m also completely freaking out. because how could I not be? I’ve been taught that school comes before everything. You’re sick? Well that’s unfortunate, too bad your chemistry test doesn’t care. You have to go out of town? Ooh…bad timing… your project due date isn’t changing. You pulled an all nighter to get your homework done but didn’t finish a couple math problems? That teacher will question why you didn’t think their class was a priority. 

It’s actually pretty sad how we view school. I’ve been taught that my health, my life experiences, my family … all of those things and more come after school. School is my number one priority. But that’s not right. 

Say I had the opportunity to travel the world – to visit every single country. The catch: I’d have to leave school for a year. I would never be able to take that opportunity. I’d miss out on learning how to figure out the slope of a hyperbola! I could never replace that knowledge with world cultures and such… that wouldn’t be useful at all…right? (See my point now?) 

I’m not saying that school isn’t important, because it is. I’m also not saying that you don’t learn anything important in school, because you do. I just believe that there is so much more out there that a school could never teach you, and we should value that a little bit more. I also believe that if you’re sick, or having a family emergency, or something along those lines, you shouldn’t have to feel like you’re drowning. 

But how do we change this? 

How do we change society’s views on anything? It all starts with one person. I guess I’ll be the leader here. School and education are two different things, and we need to realize that. An educated person doesn’t have to have a PhD. Every experience you have educates you. Every mistake you make shapes your mind in the same way a lesson in class does. We as people need to realize that the world is our classroom, and that we should take advantage of that. 

Here’s my current list of life priorities: 

– My health 
– My family 
– Potential world traveling 
– Getting an education 
– School 

I want to be an extremely educated person. I want to experience different cultures around the globe. I want to be very good at whatever my future career may be. I will work to make all of that happen. And with all of that, I will be sure to focus on my personal health, my relationship with my family, and the opportunities available to me.