Parenthood

If you are under the guidance and surveillance of parents, then I’m telling you: they are really inexperienced. 

All parents are parents for the first time in their lives. What do they know? From reading a book about parenting? Let’s say if they did read a book about parenting and knows how to handle you when you were born, but what if you came out to be a troublemaker that caused all kinds of bizarre situations for your poor guardians… well, now they just have to improvise a way to get you to 18.

Why are parents looking into their kids’ diaries and phones? Is taking a peek into their children’s lives that satisfying? Yes, you may not believe it, but if they love you and support you without dropping you by the orphanage, they are deadly worried about you whenever they get a chance. 

I asked my mother, who raised me up all by herself for my father’s absence about the reasons for the odd actions of parents, and she told me nothing I could put on this blog. She can’t explain it either. But I know the reasons. 

If life were a tortuous road to Rome, if you were destined to walk for 1000 miles to finally reach the destination, your parents would want you to walk 900 less so you could reach that goal in an easier, safer and faster manner. They want you to surpass them, want you to be better than them. (That is, if you’re not an orphan) 

So walk slower, because you only walk to Rome once, and who knows how much longer you’ll have a GPS in life?

Photo credit: nacoa.org

Evening Runs

Sundays are long runs.

I usually end up doing them in the evening much later than I should. I tell myself I’m being strategical and avoiding the heat, but if that was true I would run in the morning (that RARELY happens). In reality, my procrastination and dread for long runs are the reason why my long runs happen in the evening.

Yesterday though, my run was pleasant. I never thought I’d say these words, but it was almost enjoyable.

Around 7:55 I told myself, “Bella, get up, you’re running.” I grabbed my headphones, running watch, a headlamp, and started to run.

It was cool weather.

My music was good.

It was dark to the point where I could see my shoes and three feet ahead of me, but nothing else.

I had no light to see my watch screen, so I just ran. I didn’t constantly check to see my mileage or pace, or how much time I had left: I simply just ran.

And then there were the shadows.

What I’m going to say next will sound like some philosophical bs but while I was running it totally made sense, if you’re a runner, you know that the mind starts to lose sanity after about five miles.

The newly set sun and distant street lights served as an invitation for three shadows to join me. One ran about four feet behind me, one right by my side, and one ran far in front of me.

I stared at the three shadows for a good twenty minuets because, like I said, running is a tedious thing that causes a bit of insanity, and I started to think.

I thought about my progress with running, the struggles I’ve faced with it, where I am, and where I want to be.

The shadow behind me represented where I started: my first time running without someone forcing me to do it, the first time I competed in a race, and all of the first steps I took in my running journey.

The middle shadow right next to me represented where I am now: I am not in as great of shape as I was at my peak, but I’m in better shape that when I started. I am working to improve my skills.

The shadow in front of me represents where I want to be: my goals, the times I want to achieve, races I want to compete in, and mental toughness that I want to acquire with my running.

On my evening long run, in my philosophical state, I stared ahead and placed one foot in front of the other, in a rhythmical pattern, as I chased down my running goals and the shadow that ran ahead of me.

Photo via runningmagazine.ca

You are Alive

In a difficult situation, rather than recognizing my own mistake, I tend to look for the wrong in other people. The inertia of others would oftentimes disappoint me. However, I don’t think anyone is really wrong. 

Sometimes you don’t see the flaw in yourself. My best friend Ce is just like me, he often tells me that he is disappointed by this or that person. As an outsider to his problems, I see the flaw perfectly—we place our expectations too high. With a high expectation, feeling disappointed becomes easy. 

This scenario doesn’t just apply to Ce and me, it’s a situation that everyone is facing right now. With the raging coronavirus, limiting our freedom and space, one can only feel disappointed from the news and the inertia of others. However, I urge you to think about life, to appreciate the fact that you’re alive and well and not the medics who wear only scarfs on their faces to fend off the virus.

To be more content with your current situation means that you have to have a low expectation of other people. Just be glad that as of this moment, you, while reading this blog, you are breathing and may have a chance to see tomorrow. 

Photo credit: wallpapertag.com

the wind gives me faith.

they keep saying that as time passes, it gets harder. but for me, it had become easier, simpler, more tangible.  

I sat in my backyard yesterday at two o’clock in the afternoon while the wind was still and the sky was baby blue. 

I sunk my feet into the damp grass, satisfying to my callused feet.

a chai tea in hand; I slowly, with a green straw, stirred my drink with the ice that acted like it was one figure. 

content. 

but then the wind came, unexpected, abrupt. 

It stirred the scorched leaves from the early summer sun and had rested in the dirt.

the pink peppercorns and the pine needles fell from the trees. 

on the outside, it looked like the wind disturbed the plants, the grass, and bright orange marigolds that sit in the corner of the garden. 

but I stared longer at each aspect of my backyard, the wind melded everything together. 

the trees swayed together and the tall strands of grass danced with it. 

harmony.

It was hard for me to cope with a life that seemed stagnant at the time,

still like the wind that was not present when I sipped my chai tea. 

but I find joy in the little things like the birds chirping as I rise from my bed in the morning or the luck that I have after winning my fifth cribbage game. 

of course, I still wear a backpack of burdens that I impose on myself but that’s what it means to be human. 

serenity. 

photo credit: designlovefest.com

Persistence

Persistence is key to being successful. It’s hard to find someone who became successful with the inconsistent mindset. Especially during this period, where people have zero motivation to do something productive. It is crucial to maintain your persistence despite the situation unless on special occasions. 

Frankly, I’ve been not doing a good job of being persistent, but I always try to be more optimistic despite the harsh environment that we are in right now. 

I’ve been trying to set up a daily schedule to be more productive and persistent, once you started to get lazy, it is extremely hard to get back on track.

So I recommend getting out of bed and do anything you can to have the motivation to do other works. Once you get used to that routine, being persistent will be easier. I am also trying to maintain a lifestyle that is not lavish, and I hope this mindset will not change throughout time.

Stay safe and wash your hands.

PC: Steemit.com

Staying Active

Since this global pandemic situation, I can say that I’ve been pretty inactive. I have no motivation to be active at this point. It is not a good time to go out and have fun with friends, and I can see my flaps on the belly clearly, so I decided to start home workouts. I do not have a lot of experience in this field, so I had to look up some videos on Youtube, and as I expected there were millions of videos of workouts that you can do by yourself. I decided to do 100 pushups every day and some cardio.

I do not know If I can keep up with this routine for months, but I will try my best to get in shape, so I don’t have to struggle when I go back to school.

I believe it is worth time, so I suggest you guys do it too. Exercises vitalize your body and mind.

I truly hope everyone is safe, and this situation will get better soon.

PC: sunnyskyz.com

Changes

Because of this global pandemic situation, all the standardized tests including APs and SATs are modified. Currently, all the SATs before are canceled and the college board announced that if this global pandemic situation continues they might change the policy and make students take SAT online. Cancellation of SAT on March was devastating for me, first of all the school announced that SAT testing is not happening the day before testing date, and March SAT was the test that I was looking forward to getting the score that I wanted since I’ve been studying a lot for it. 

AP testings are also modified in a way, where they allow students to take it at home and most of the AP testings contain 2 FRQs, and the college board announced that they will still grade those APs on 5 point scale.

These modified testings upset me frankly, but it is a situation that I have to deal with. I will try my best to get a good score on those testings. 

Again I hope this situation gets better soon.

PC: VHTSP.com

a feminist paper: presented through a playlist

The fembots. An early sign of the objectification and sexualization of the woman in pop culture. 

Ironically, “FEMBOTS” is the title of her strictly female artist playlist on Spotify. It’s still an early adaptation of a playlist that has the potential to go down in user oliviarosebrown5’s history as the best of her creation. 

pc: pinteres.com

Once a month, I find myself grazing over the 20 playlists that each have their own emotions: pain, reminisce, serenity, pure joy. 

My feminist playlist was something that came to me over the years. Artists and songs that represented what it meant to be a strong woman were scattered over my several playlists. 

I found Eryn Allen Kane with Leon Bridges, 

Janet and Whitney with Michael, 

And Maggie in a junk drawer of alternative music. 

Each of them deserved to have their voices heard with clairity and without that pressure of male artists. 

Enter “Fembots.” 

“Fembots” is filled with female artists that taught me what it meant to love music the way I do. And not only that, they taught me about… life. 

The eerie yet poetic nature of Chloe and Halle as they ponder human impatience. 

Amber recreating a masterpiece with a new perspective while still preaching love’s power. 

Janet understanding that we don’t understand what we have until its gone. 

The confidence in being lost and letting ourselves be free from conformity is from Sabrina. 

Jamila offers “A Psalm Of Self-Love.”

The female artist that I have loved since I was a little girl dancing in her underwear has taught me more than what is reflected here but that’s for me to keep in my back pocket. 

Surely, goodness and mercy shall follow me. 

Psalm 23:6

COVID-19 In Korea

I was notified that the school is shutting down the day before my March SAT, and standardized testing is not going to happen till May. I tried to stay calm and optimistic, but frankly, it was hard to not panic at the moment. I was clueless about my plan, and I wasn’t sure if I have to get a plane ticket back to my home country, Korea. 

After long consideration, I decided to go back in a week since all the students were leaving and school was forcing students to leave the campus as soon as possible. However, I was lucky to come back early, or I would have to be quarantined at a place that I don’t even know.

Asian countries are doing a great job dealing with this COVID-19 Issue, However, the number of infected people in Other countries like America and Italy are increasing exponentially., 

Schools in California officially stated that they are shutting down till the end of the semester, and it is uncertain that it would get better after summer, but I hope the situation gets better, So there are no more casualties and I can study in the proper environment.

PC: BBC KOREA

random thoughts

I brought an end to my last relationship two months ago, and that was the turning point I guess. After that, my life went like a roller coaster, everything just went up and down like crazy.

At first, I suddenly have tons of free time, I had nothing to do except resting in my room.

Till the time when some weird rumors about me were flying all over the place, I even heard my name mentioned with some words like “flirty” “player” “bitchy”. I was confused, I was being judged based on something that ain’t true.

I tried to stop it at first, but I had no idea who started the gossips in the first place. Nothing worked out well, except I made myself extremely exhausted.

Kind of lost control of myself those days. I have faced plenty of “first time” things: I almost failed my unit exam, I received some laps and did laps labors, I got kicked out of the classroom, I signed a contract with school…

I tried to let it go and calmed myself down. I brought several books to read during spare time.

On the bright side, there were some good “first-time” things: I talked to some people I haven’t talked to in a while, I hung out with several new friends, I went to some new places I never been to in the town before, I ordered Trenta size drink at Starbucks, my article got published on local newspaper…

To be honest, I had a thought about escaping, a break from reality, but I never expected this happened.

Something really big happened, all my difficulties were literally nothing compared with it. Coronavirus outbreak in the state, my school got closed off, my SAT got canceled, my AP exams became online. I thought I suddenly had nothing to do again, but I was totally wrong.

I needed to make a decision as soon as possible: should I stay or go home? I chose to go home after I went through lots of mental struggles.

Due to the limited airlines, I had to take connection flights. Due to the virus spread prevention, I had to take 14 days long quarantine. Due to the location I am, I had to access my learning materials through VPN. Due to the time differences, I will take my AP exams online at 2 am in the morning.

There are lots of unsatisfactory things that I can do nothing to make it better except deal with it, this is what I learned from this experience.

Just some words about my random thoughts…

pc: bdstatic.com