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Photo Credit: outsidevan.com

I’ve lived in the same place my whole life, but I’ve never realized how beautiful it is until recently.

Maybe I just didn’t notice it before or I wasn’t old enough to appreciate it, but lately I catch myself staring up at the mountains.

It has been raining a lot lately. On my drive home, I noticed that the north-facing slopes are so much greener than the south-facing ones.

But Dad says this isn’t supposed to happen. South and west-facing slopes are usually the greenest, at least where we are, because of sunlight and rainwater, he explained. The south-facing Topa Topas are just dry because of their rocky terrain.

I’m not sure why even still I think of the fire when I’m admiring the mountains. Maybe it made me appreciate them more.

The trees still seem like skeletons to me. They are black and withered and don’t really fit in with the bright grass that’s growing in. They used to be so much greener. But at least they are still standing. I’m thankful for that.

There isn’t really much to do in this sleepy town, especially after having been here for sixteen years. But despite that, I can’t think of a better place to have grown up.

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Here’s to Strong Women

She’s strong, she’s talented, she’s smart. My friend is headed towards great things.

Soon we’ll be in college, I know I won’t be going to the same school as her anymore, but I know I’ll never forget her.

You know someone is extraordinary when they have so many amazing goals that they don’t know what to pursue.

Sometimes I think, what will she be doing in four years?

Will she be a influential member in race and resistance studies, standing up to oppression and persecution?

Will she be a rising scholar in gender and feminism studies, striving to create a more equal world?

Will she be a social justice worker?

Will she be a photo journalist, not only using her power with words to inspire, but her talent with captured memories, also?

Will she be filmmaker and editor, creating barrier-breaking and revolutionary films?

Will she be a gender sexuality savant, fighting for the LGBTQ+ community?

Will she be a sociologist, endeavoring  to generate social polyphony?

Will she be a lawyer fighting for human rights?

I don’t think she’s just going to chose one of these. I think she’s going to do all of them, because if she sets her mind to something, there’s no stopping her.

I know sometimes you get nervous. You wonder how you’ll accomplish everything you hope to. You occasionally struggle to understand your identity, what path to take. You get down some times. You make wrong decisions and question your worth.

I know you are strong, but I know we all have our doubts and struggles. But never forget, I’m here for you. I’m rooting for you. I love you.

You are an inspiration, an amazing friend, and you are going to make such a big difference in the world.

Never forget your goals, for I know, you can and you will achieve them all.

Photo Credit: edgefunders.com

we make our own waves.

photo credit: images.fineartamerica.com

He told me this:
“I make my own waves.

I make my own waves when
I don’t need to.
I make myself angry when I don’t need to be!
And it’s not good for me,
not good for my health.

I see you do the same thing to yourself.
I think it’s something you inherited,
like it’s genetic, maybe. And I’m sorry.

It has taken me my whole life,
fifty-some years to realize that
I am the only one who can control how I feel,
that it is me, and not other people, who changes
the way I feel.

I see you do this to yourself,
you expect people to think the same way,
and to care and to try the same way that you do.

It’s taken me my whole life
to realize that, and I still
don’t know how to fix it.

If you could learn this now,
so early on in your life,
you’ll be so much better for it.

You’ll be just fine.”

I make my own waves too, sometimes.

But the thing about waves, is that even though they can be destructive, they can also be spectacular.

So, I think that it’s okay to make waves in our lives, but we have to decide which kind they will be.

 

past journal entries with added (commentary)

photo credit: pinterest.com

I wasn’t sure what to say tonight, so I decided to comment on a few things I found while flipping through my journals. Enjoy:

November 3, 2015: Middle school is hard.
(This one made me giggle.)

March 6, 2016: Being carefree is not the same as being careless.
(Not sure what prompted me to jot this down. I probably thought it was a lot more profound back then, but I guess it’s still a valid point.)

April 5, 2017: I got hit in the eye with a baseball today.
(I remember it like it was yesterday. Ouch.)

November 20, 2018: TOO MANY FEELINGS AT ONCE! WHAT A TIME TO BE ALIVE AND YOUNG!
(This one was written in capitals and had some vigorous underlining. I like it.)

December 4, 2018: I’m just so different than I was before. But I think that’s a good thing, somehow.
(Yay for personal growth!)

December 23, 2018: Some people are just easy to love, and easy to fall in love with. They are both my favorite and least favorite kind of people.
(haha no comment.)

January 6, 2019: “Wish I was there, wish we’d grown up on the same advice, and our time was right…”
(These are Frank Ocean lyrics. MAN, I wish I could write songs like Frank Ocean.)

Sometimes I write down the random thoughts that pop into my head. It’s kind of cool to see how they have evolved over time. That’s all for now.

 

a thank you letter

I want to say thank you to my body.

Photo Credit: thisiscolossal.com, Raija Jokinen

I’m thankful for my feet and for all of the blisters and calluses they’ve endured, simply because they’ve kept me grounded.

I’m thankful for my legs, because even though sometimes I think they are too short, they are strong. My legs have carried me across miles, mountains, and everything in between.

I’m thankful for my stomach, my back. I am thankful for my chest, because it protects my lungs and my heart.

I’m thankful for my arms, no matter how much I hate the way they look in tank tops, because they help me lift myself back up.

I’m thankful for my shoulders, the same ones that I used to think were too broad and boyish, for always keeping my head up.

And lastly, I’m thankful for my head. Although it isn’t always level, it houses my brain and all of the thoughts that are constantly buzzing around in it.

We spend too much time hating our bodies. It is easier to find things we don’t like about ourselves than it is to find things we do like. We can’t control the way we look, but we can control how we feel about ourselves.

And even though it’s hard sometimes, I think we should all try to thank our bodies every once in a while.

We need to be kinder to ourselves, kinder to our bodies. We deserve that.

My body isn’t perfect, but it has gotten me this far. And I’m so thankful for that.

New Year, Improved Me

I started off 2018 with so many resolutions. I was going to lose weight and gain abs, keep straight A’s, save up all my money to go traveling, and I fulfilled none of those resolutions.

Because, whenever I make New Year’s resolutions, I make them so they’re far beyond my reach in such a small time. When I make huge goals, I get disappointed when I don’t reach them in a short time, so I end up quitting along the way.

So, in 2019, I won’t make grand wishes for myself. I’ll make small ones and I’ll keep adding to those small ones until I get the results I want.

Photo Credit: vox.com

I didn’t make any New Year’s resolutions, but I do have small goals for myself I hope to continue through the year:

Write in my diary. I started writing in a journal at the beginning of 12th grade when I was feeling down, but I suddenly stopped when life got better. I don’t want to stop. I want to write about everything that excites, depresses, or even angers me. But I don’t expect to write in it every day because I get busy or just tend to forget, but I hope to grab my journal and write anything and everything whenever I remember.

Eat healthier. This doesn’t mean I’m gonna completely cut out junk food from my life. I’m still gonna eat my favorite candy and journalism snacks and stop at In-N-Out when I leave LAX. But I’ll also add more vegetables to my plate and avoid gluten when I can. I’ll add better foods to my diet without necessarily taking away all the bad ones.

Dedicate a little more time to playing guitar and piano.

Be more inclusive with my friends.

Work out more. Not full work outs at the gym, but small ones before bed. Sit ups, stretches, squats, etc. all while watching Netflix or talking over the phone with my friends.

Live life in the moment. I want to go to concerts and dance and sing my heart out in the back instead of hoping to be at the front for that one Instagram photo just to prove I was there. Laugh in the moment instead of worrying about the potentially inexistent consequences of the future. Wear the outfit I thought was cute though I don’t necessarily think I look cute in it. Find people who want to be with me instead of waiting on those who don’t. And live.

2019 isn’t a new year for a new me, but it is a new year for an improved me and that’s what I hope to do.

12 Minutes of Word Vomit!

Photo Credit: Amor Fati/Wordpress.com

I have an existential crisis almost every night.
The fire was a year ago. That scares me.

The music is too loud outside my window and
my eyes hurt from staring at a screen for so long.

I’m having an existential crisis tonight. It’s because of Calculus homework.
I could post about it.┬áMaybe someone will say I’m pretty.

She hasn’t replied to my email yet and I worry that my writing is boring.
But my teacher says I’m good at Spanish, so at least I have that.

My eyes are dry. They almost always are.
I say I’ve never been in love before but that’s not true.

Photo Credit: Pinterest.com (and this is supposed to be ironic)

I am in love right now. It’s just the sad kind.

I could post about it. Maybe someone will say I’m pretty.

He likes the finality of writing things down on paper. I like it too. (But as I wrote this, I knew I would type it out later.) I like the way he thinks because he is an intellectual.

It’s not always about the words themselves,
it is about what they mean and how they feel.

My room is too cluttered and so is my mind.

I want to leave my house and live somewhere far away.

My life is a mess and I’m having an existential crisis tonight, but I met a famous person once. And a different famous person has a relative that goes to my school, so I think I will post about it.

I wish I could write songs. They would probably be boring.

And maybe this doesn’t make sense to some people.

Oh well.