Tag Archives: Life

The Sweet Taste of Freedom

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Well, guys, I’ve gotta be honest.

College sucks.

This past semester has been a near hell of stress, busywork, sleep deprivation and frighteningly low grades in Biology. Needless to say, between studying, stressing, nervous breakdowns and maybe just a little bit of crying I haven’t had much time to blog. I have good news, though, something that makes all of that worth it.

It’s over.

Finals have been completed and grades have been posted. (Side note: after all of the crap I went through stressing over it I still got a B in bio! That’s pretty much a miracle for me. )

I never have to do any sort of science EVER again. I’m free! You have no IDEA how happy  this makes me, you guys. I can LIVE again. More importantly: I can SLEEP again! *Cue happy dance*

 

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Now to spend this Christmas writing my butt off to make up for lost time.

-Faith

 

The Curse of the Christian Concert

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Gather round, children, close to the fire. It’s time to hear a story. Come close, sit down. Are we all settled? Okay, then. Let’s begin…

This is a tale that began one summer only a year ago, in a quaint little village that, for the sake of anonymity, we shall call Arendelle.

Within the walls and among the modest population of Arendelle lived a teenaged girl called Faith. Faith had barely been living in little Arendelle for three months, and one day she heard of a free concert happening by the river the next week, by her favorite Christian band no less! She was so excited, and she wanted to make the best impression she could on the people of Arendelle, so she bought a new pair of shoes just for the concert. They were simple black flats, suede, with a pretty little bow on each toe. They were absolutely beautiful, and Faith just knew that they would be perfect for her first real social event since moving to Arendelle.

The day of the concert dawned bright and sunny, seemingly perfect. The whole day passed in a blur, and finally Faith was arriving at the riverside venue, jittery with excitement. She rushed to find her seat in the near-empty amphitheater, a needless thing to do since she had arrived nearly two hours early, anticipating a much larger turnout. As she sat down on the front row, right in front of the stage-the best spot in venue-she noticed a shadow on the horizon that looked suspiciously like a storm cloud. It was so far off, though, that she was sure she’d be long gone by the time it reached the river.

Two hours passed more slowly than expected, and all Faith could pay attention to was the slowly moving storm cloud, growing closer and closer by the minute. It was moving disturbingly fast, and Faith was growing increasingly nervous. Soon the storm was practically upon them, hovering ominously and darkening the sky to a depressing gray but not letting loose its obvious wrath. Maybe it’ll hold off until after the concert, Faith thought.

Her optimistic wish turned out to be just that: a wish. No sooner had the concert started then the rain began, harsh and sharp, stinging her face and blurring her vision. The band continued playing nevertheless, not ones to be thwarted by a little rain, they claimed. They’d played in worse conditions.

But Faith couldn’t see.

She could barely hear the music over the din the storm was making.

She couldn’t sing without inhaling a mouthful of water.

She was quickly soaked to the bone and shivering in the cold the storm produced, but she gritted her teeth and sang along to the barely audible music anyway, enjoying the concert in spite of the rain.

Eventually the band cut off the electric instruments, picked up a hand drum and an acoustic guitar, and headed to the covered awning that led to the amphitheater to continue the concert acoustically, with the crowd circling around them like a bunch of friends at a campfire.

There was a certain closeness Faith felt with the people around her, a camaraderie, something that can only be formed from a real shared experience. She was laughing and singing with perfect strangers, and within this moment everything was perfect. Despite the rain, despite the cold, despite everything, things were good. 

She smiled as she left, replaying the music that she just heard in her head. She was absolutely freezing, but she didn’t mind. Her clothes would dry, she would warm. Everything could be mended. She walked to her car quickly and reached out to open the car door.

Then she remembered her shoes.

Her lovely, gorgeous, perfect shoes.

She glanced down at her feet and her fear was confirmed.

Her perfect shoes were ruined.

Faith closed her eyes to keep back a tear. They’re just shoes, she told herself. Just the most beautiful, expensive, gorgeous, amazing, perfect shoes ever. 

She slowly got into the car and kicked off the soaked shoes. The lining in both shoes was completely separated, they were both flattened completely, and Faith had no idea where the bow on the right one had gone.

When she got home, she reluctantly threw them both in the trash.

She never found another pair of shoes as beautiful as those again.

Flash forward one year: The same band has chosen to perform in Arendelle again the following summer. The past year has been a great one for Faith, and she’s made many good friends, a few of whom she invites to go to the concert with her. 

The day is a sunny one, less than a week before the fourth of July. Faith, her siblings (Belle and Kristoff), and her friends Merida, Rapunzel, and Silvermist are sitting on the third row in the concrete amphitheater. They’re listening to the concert, talking, laughing, enjoying the annoyed looks from people around them when they say something a little too loud, and the bewildered ones they get when they make odd references to their fandoms that the eavesdroppers don’t understand. They’re all truly having a good time together.

Eventually Silvermist’s friend Mickey shows up and they leave, and Merida and Faith go to get ice cream and water for themselves and the others in their group. Afternoon fades into evening, the concert ends and the girls get autographs from and pictures with the artists. They leave laughing and joking together, recently arrived parents trailing behind, talking to each other about who knows what. They reach the parking lot and stop. This is where they must part ways. The girls say goodbye, but don’t actually leave yet. They continue talking, despite the parents ending conversation.

Suddenly, Merida slips on the curb and falls on her side, mud from the previous weeks’ rain splashing all over her clothes.

And ruining her white flowered shoes.

Merida stands up slowly, looking at her feet in disbelief for a second. “My shoes!” she exclaims. Then she bursts out in laughter, pointing at Faith. “It’s you! You lost your shoes last year, and I guess it’s my turn now!”

At a mother’s suggestion, Merida, Belle, Rapunzel and Faith race to the decorative waterfall at the entrance to the riverside amphitheater and hold the shoes underneath it to rinse as much of the mud off of them as possible. They do what they can for them and laugh about it for another few minutes. Eventually they go their separate ways.

Upon further discussion, Faith and Merida came to the obvious and TOTALLY rational conclusion that the concert, and maybe even the band, are cursed, so that someone always has to ruin a pair of shoes during or after the event.

It makes absolute sense.

The girls labeled it “The Curse of the Christian Concert”.

Beware, all who enter such events, and please-don’t wear new shoes.

Random Acts of Weirdness

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Random acts of kindness. You’ve likely witnessed one before. You’re in line at Starbucks behind a few other people, the person currently at the register hands a piece of paper to the cashier, whispers something to him, and leaves. The line moves up. You listen to the woman in front of you order her coffee, and when she goes to pay you hear the cashier tell her that it’s already paid for by the man before her, and he hands her the piece of paper he was given by the benefactor.

Maybe you’ve been the generous person to pay for somebody else’s drink, or food, or heck- even somebody’s groceries.

Maybe you’ve been on the receiving end of one of these acts.

Random acts of kindness affect everybody. It’s an amazing thing that really proves to me that people still care for each other. That we’re all still in this together, and nobody’s ever alone.

random acts of kindness

Recently my friend (let’s call her Merida) and her sister (how about Rapunzel for her) were at Target shopping when a couple of girls about their age approached them with four Starbucks drinks, offering one to each of the sisters.

“Why?” Merida asked them, not a little confused by this odd gift.

One of the girls smiled, re-positioning the Starbucks cups she was holding.”Well, we got too many of the wrong kind by accident. We didn’t want good coffee to go to waste, right? So we’ve been walking around looking for someone to give these to.”

The other girl spoke up: “Yeah, and you guys looked…well, like us, and we figured you’d like them. Sorry if we’re weirding you out, I swear we didn’t, like, poison them or anything. And we didn’t drink them yet either.”

Rapunzel and Merida glanced at each other warily and then took the free Starbucks drinks, thanking the girls and walking away fairly happily.

The sisters died of food poisoning two days later.

Okay, so I admit I was kidding about that last part. Merida and Rapunzel enjoyed the free Starbucks, finished their shopping and continued about their lives, healthy and breathing as always. No tricks played. Just a couple of girls who decided to bless someone with their mistake instead of throwing it away, like most people would do.

My question for you: Would you do the same thing those stranger girls did for Merida and Rapunzel? I’m sure it was awkward for them, and to be honest it wasn’t even a huge deal, just a couple of frappes. Nobody would’ve missed them if they were simply thrown away and forgotten about. And yet the girls still gave.

That’s a pretty cool act of kindness right there, those girls took extra, unplanned time out of their day to do this. To bless somebody with a Starbucks drink. (which, in my mind, is TOTALLY equal to happiness. These girls were giving away HAPPINESS, people. STARBUCKS BRAND RAINBOWS AND BUTTERFLIES AND HAPPINESS. Why couldn’t I have been there when this was happening???)

Would you do the same thing they did?

The Bees

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It’s the quickest ones

They sting hard when they’re spoken

And stay forever.

Never truly heal

May get better, be okay.

But I’m always scarred.

Everybody hurts.

The bees, they strike everyone.

Never relenting.

We have power, though.

Power to just love instead.

Destroy our own hive.

Bees, they live always

We can’t stomp them out for good

But always we love.

The “C” Word

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I’m about to say a dirty word. One that I never dared say until this past spring. A dark, mean, horrible, intimidating word.

College. *Insert Psycho music here*

Just the sound of the word makes me shudder. It’s such a huge thing in my mind, and something I thought I wouldn’t have to deal with for at least another year. I thought I had time.

Had.

As fate would have it, my local community college happens to offer concurrent enrollment, essentially a chance for a high school junior or senior–me–to start gaining college credit whilst simultaneously completing their remaining high school work.

I guess I should look at this as a good thing. I’m basically doing almost half the schoolwork for twice the credit that I would get otherwise, and getting two years of college and an Associates out of the way before I’m even eighteen. Good, right? Great, even. Awesome.

So why am I unsure about it?

It’s not that I don’t think I’ll do well or anything. I believe academically I’d be absolutely fine. Great, even. I’ve been doing college-level work in school for quite some time now. I guess it’s more of the idea of college being a “grown up” thing, in my mind. Something that you do when you’re ready to be an adult.

And…to be honest… I’m not. I am by NO means ready to be an adult, and college is this huge step that feels like it’s pushing me that way, and fast. I’m at a point now where I need to make a plan for my-here comes another freaky word-future. I need to narrow down interests and talents to what I can plausibly make a living from. I need to learn things that will benefit whatever path I choose, and help it along.

Oh, did I mention I need to choose a career path?

Yeah. I don’t even fully know who I am now, let alone who I’ll be in two, five, ten, fifteen, or twenty years from now. How can I be expected to make such a huge decision that will affect all future versions of me when I’m still in one of the dumbest, least knowledgeable stages of my life? For all I know, future me has NO interest whatsoever in web design. Future Faith could hate writing, or singing, or music in general. I could pick and pursue a path now that could be useless to me in twenty years.

And it all starts right now, with the “C” word.

This is gonna be fun.

-Faith

The World We Live In

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Loud.

The noise blocks all thought.

Phones.

TV.

iPods.

Websites.

Media.

Music.

Too much, too much to bear.

I’ll explode if it doesn’t stop.

Everybody absorbed, looking different ways.

They aren’t aware of each other.

How does this happen?

Life is a series of who likes my words, and who doesn’t.

I don’t want to be one person’s opinion.

I want to be ME.

But that’s so hard today.

What if I’m not liked?

What if I’m just too different?

What would they say then?

Should I care?

No.

No, I don’t care. I shouldn’t care.

I WILL NOT be one person’s opinion.

I WILL be ME.

I will say what I need to say, and If you don’t like it, say something different.

Say something that is YOU.

And don’t judge somebody else’s ME.

We all have flaws.

Insecurities.

Fears.

And we all have gifts.

Talents.

Loves.

We are PEOPLE, for heaven’s sake.

Why is that so hard to understand in the world we live in?

Siblings- Who Needs ‘Em?

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I am an evil, coldhearted person.

Or, at least, I would be. If I actually agreed with this post’s title. Confession time: There have been times, though, during some of the countless shouting matches my siblings and I have hosted, when I’ve thought or said that(and worse things)…and meant it. At the time.

Let’s get one thing straight: If you have siblings, you HAVE argued with them at some point. I don’t care WHO you are, you simply cannot argue the contrary.

Some of those arguments are because of the silliest things, though, aren’t they?

For example: The other day, I was in the living room reading, my sister on the couch petting the dog, and my brother playing video games on the floor below me, when suddenly some annoying sound started to bug me and I just could not focus on my book. I looked up, ticked, to see what it was, and realized that it was my brother breathing. Yes, you heard me correctly. I was annoyed by my brother’s breathing. Ya know, that thing you do, converting carbon dioxide to oxygen in order to provide life-giving air to SURVIVE. Yup, I was irritated by my brother’s version of that. So I did the only logical thing one can do in that situation. I told him to stop. (All right, all together now, ladies and gentlemen, one… two… three… FACE. PALM) I won’t even continue that story, because it only gets dumber from there.

Another example: This morning, when I picked up one of those giant air-filled balls that they keep in a giant net at Wal-Mart off of our floor and started tossing it at the wall, only to get it knocked out of my hand and then thrown at my head by my brother. This, of course, started a not-so-friendly throwing war for the next five minutes. I swear, had we had any lamps in that room, they would’ve been broken.

There was also the time, a few years ago, when my sister (whose chore is doing the laundry)put a sock that wasn’t mine on my bed, and I tossed it back, saying so. She disagreed, but after a short argument she took it, and that night I found it under my pillow. I could’ve just given it to my mother, because I think that’s whose it was. But then what, in my childish mind, would I have proven? And so the silent war between my sister and I started, where every other night or so for a few months one of us found this mystery sock somewhere in our things. Sometimes it was somewhere obvious like in the pillowcase, but sometimes it was hidden in a book or something, and then it took a few days to find it. Just long enough for the enemy side to think the war was over, that the opponent had retreated. One day, I actually found it tacked to the shower wall. Oh, the things we do.
To this day, I have no idea what happened to that sock. It must have gotten lost in translation.

These things are just a sample of the dumb arguments my siblings and I get into. (And really, you should be glad you don’t have to hear the others…It gets pretty stupid.)

Isn’t it funny, though, how you can be angry as ever at siblings one minute, and the next be laughing together at absolutely nothing? Don’t tell them this, but I really do love my brother and sister. Without them, I’d have nobody to practice debate with. I wouldn’t have someone to stay up till 2 AM chatting with. I wouldn’t have somebody to teach me how to play Halo and all those other video games. (And to give my character a good smack in the face when I screw up for the whole team.) Without my siblings, I wouldn’t be the writer I am today.

Who needs siblings? I do.
What about you? What are some of the stupidest arguments you’ve gotten into with siblings, parents, spouses, or any family members, really? Think about that for a second. Comment it, if you want. Maybe write a post about it. (If you do, comment a link. I’d seriously love to hear that I’m not the only one who gets into those dumb arguments…)

-Faith

My Sister Handed Herself Over To The NSA. (Facebook Is Out To Get Us)

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Facebook. We all know the site. That blue-and-white interface. The instant messaging system that tells you who’s really offline and who’s just ignoring your message. The News Feed, giving you information about all of your friends’ days at a glance. Ah, the joys of waiting anxiously to see who will like your post or selfie, and wondering why that special He or She didn’t.

Now, don’t take what I’ve said so far or what I will say to mean that I don’t like Facebook. I actually do; generally speaking. It’s the main way I keep in touch with my friends and family across the country; so I won’t exactly riot Facebook Headquarters or anything. But I would like to say a few things about the “personal information gatherer” website.

Notice the term “Personal Information Gatherer”? Yeah. I meant that seriously. (Ish.) Do you have any idea how much we know about our friends and family that we probably shouldn’t? I’ll give you a hint: A lot. I’ll not get into details, but let me say this:

Did you EVER need to see that picture of your grandma in a swimsuit? Do you really care if your uncle got a new car…again? Do you REALLY want to see all of those tantalizing pictures of other people’s selfishly delicious dinners? (I mean, really! They’re starting to make me feel bad about my favorite cereal-for-dinner ritual!) And honestly girls, do you think anyone (besides your mom) REALLY cares about your 287th selfie?

They’re not TAKING the information from us, though. There is no fight. They simply ask politely, and we WILLINGLY tell them everything about us! Where we’re going for lunch, when we’re on vacation, when we have our next dentist appointment, etc. They make it look like fun, so even the strongest of us feel like we “have” to sign up, tell Facebook everywhere we’ve been, everywhere we plan to go, everything we’ve done and are going to do. We just let it all spill. We’ve told them dates, phone numbers, names, and don’t even get me STARTED on addresses, credit card information, and bank accounts.

It just plain doesn’t make sense.

But yet everybody loves it.

Even I fell under the spell. I heard all about how awesome it was, back when I was too young to be allowed to participate, and when I was 13 I jumped at the chance to create my very own Facebook and tell the world everything it never wanted to know about me.

It seemed like, for a while, my little sister was the only one of my family members who had any sense left in her. She didn’t see the point of her getting online just to tell people things they don’t care about. Even when she turned 13 and was allowed by our parents to get her own Facebook, she didn’t. She just didn’t want to share her personal life online.

She was the smart one.

But then one day, I logged on to see that I had a new friend request. From none other than-drum roll please- my little sister. She had, as she put it, “Given herself over to the NSA.” because “They already knew me from my family, how much more could I tell them?” And she had a point. Facebook’s magic had pulled many a tale and photograph about my sister out of me and my parents, into its database’s grasp.

Only one more kid to go, and then our whole family will be goners.

Talk to you guys later.

Maybe.

-Faith.

(Okay, so I don’t actually think my family members are goners or anything. I also don’t think that Facebook is really out to get us, per se. But you’ve gotta see a point in some of that. We do tend to give a bit too much information to websites like Facebook, Twitter, and the like. And sometimes you’ve got to stop and think when you’re about to post something to those websites: “Is this REALLY necessary? Do I need to tell this to everyone? How could this affect me in the long run?” Maybe in the future you’ll be glad you did. )