My life is a movie?

My life has been an ongoing movie since I was four years old. I know exactly how it started–I was sitting in the car on the way home from church, and I decided that hey, my life would make a pretty fab movie. Well, not in those words, but the same concept. For the longest time, I just imagined it as live streaming, separated into chapters. The chapters were not just a yearly thing–I divided them based on how I was feeling. For instance, a happy day at a birthday party would have been the cheerful end of one chapter. As I grew older, however, I stopped liking the idea of live streaming. Way too creepy. So I started making and editing the movies in my mind–making them black and white, slow motion, etc. My imagination expanded beyond just movies and into autobiographical-memoir-book-things, speeches, and even…blogs! 

This is going to sound really, really silly, but I think even when horrible things were happening to me (cough cough seventh grade), in the very back of my mind was this little thing–voice? sense? I don’t know–that said “one day you’re going to blog about this, and it’s going to be amazing.” Has anyone else had this before?

The fact that my life has always been a big movie has caused me to be, well, maybe a little melodramatic at times. This was a lot more prevalent in my younger years (say, twelve and younger), but never ceases to show its face from time to time even now. Of course, all that melodrama was from my heart–it’s not like I ever made up stuff. I think it’s just something that’s in my personality. I’m pretty good at articulating what I’m feeling–I think, that is. If you ask me what I’m feeling, I’ll almost always be able to tell you in a pretty well-worded way. It’s never been hard for me. So, sometimes I word things a little too well, and it comes out like melodrama. So maybe it’s not actually melodrama all the time, it’s just me being able to express my emotions well. 

The movie thing has really faded in the past few years, though. It’s really turned into speeches in my head. For the past two years or so, I’ve imagined myself giving these speeches to large crowds saying, “Hey, my life was total bullshit. [insert examples of bullshit] But things got better! [insert hopeful examples] [insert hopeful, inspirational message]” Which is weird, because public speaking is NOT my thing. One day, however, I will give a big talk. I will. I know it. 

 

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When I’m an adult, when I’m a parent…

When I become an adult, I promise to listen to the voices of youth. I will consider–really consider–their arguments. Children are to be seen and not heard? That’s bullshit. I will refuse to quiet the voices of young people. I will acknowledge that I am not always right. I will realize that children, teenagers, and adults all have equal value as human beings. People are not necessarily like wine–they do not always get better with age. The problems and pain of young people are not to be ignored–I will never, ever say they have “easy lives”. I will never assume my opinions are correct just because I’m older. 

When I’m a parent, I will not prescribe to the belief that “blue is for boys” and “pink is for girls.” If my little boy wants to paint his nails and play with dolls, I will encourage him to do so. If my little girl wants to play with toy trucks and dinosaurs, I will never stop her. Who said dolls and nail polish can’t be for boys, too? Who said toy trucks and dinosaurs can’t be for girls? My children will have a say in what they wear. I will never force them to match their socks or wear coordinating colors. And, of course, if my boy wants to wear a frilly pink shirt or dress, I will not stop him. His happiness will matter more to me than unfair gender stereotypes and expectations. The same will go for my girl. I will support risk-taking–if she isn’t the best athlete and still wants to sign up for soccer, I will encourage it. If he’s tone-deaf and wants to join a chorus, I’ll never tell him he can’t. My children will never be my little servants. If I make a mess, I clean it up. If they make a mess, they clean it up. I will never force my children to clean up my messes. You know what else? I will never, ever, ever spank or hit my children. I’m a firm believer that love, not fear, is the greatest motivator. I won’t shame my children, call them names, or yell in their faces. If they’re upset and want to talk to me, I’ll listen with open ears. If they’re upset and don’t want to talk to me, I won’t pry. Personal expression will be celebrated. I’ll make sure to frame their artwork on the wall if they want it, even if to me it only looks like scribbles in crayon. I want my children to feel special. If they tell me they hate me, I won’t punish them–we’ve all felt angry before. I won’t pretend I know everything. My kids will be introduced to many different musical genres, types of books, movies, TV shows, and art forms. I’ll teach them about different religions, because I don’t want them to grow up in ignorance. I’ll let my kids believe in Santa Claus and won’t shame them for it. They will be allowed to be excited for presents on Christmas morning–I won’t accuse them of “losing the true meaning”. I won’t mock my kids. I won’t call them brats. If they use a big vocabulary, I won’t ask them to dumb themselves down. I won’t try to be their hero; I will acknowledge that I am not the key to their problems. I believe in empowering, not enabling. I’ll never make them think that being angry is a sin. My kids will never be taught that gay people are evil. I won’t bring them up in a racist, sexist, homophobic environment. I’ll encourage them to question authority. I’ll encourage them to make discoveries and challenge themselves, but never to the point of extreme frustration. I will NOT compare my children, nor will I play favorites. I’ll try to let them arrange the furniture in their rooms however they look. Books will be everywhere; I want to foster a love of reading and learning. Most of all, I’m going to love them unconditionally. I don’t want my kids going to bed scared or frightened of me. I never want them to fear for their safety, whether physical or emotional. I don’t expect that they’ll like me all the time, but I hope they at least realize how much I love them. 

Such love. Much romance. Wow.

Take me into a wide open field at four in the morning and gaze at the stars. Bring a picnic blanket and sandwiches, so we can eat together in tranquil silence. I will break the silence with a question, whispered softly into the thick night. Then more will come–questions, questions–they will spill from my mouth like black tar. Don’t answer the questions. Wrap your arm around my shoulders and help me quiet my mind. Tell me stories of dragons and of fairies, spaceships and rockets, fables and folk tales. Tell me all your stories, and I will tell you all mine. Secrets, unknown to the world, I will shout to the moon and the stars. Ponder with me the deep mysteries of life and living. Think aloud. Hide nothing. We will get drunk on the dark sky, high on the giddy memories of old. Pretend we don’t know how to walk so we can teach each other how. Squeeze blackberries on my face so I can close my eyes and feel the juices run through my eyelashes and onto my awaiting tongue. Sing softly and let your voice be swallowed up in the night. I promise to sing with you, so our voices can play and dance together in wonderful harmonies. Weave flowers into my hair. I will give you clumps of grass–if you use them to rub into your clothing, I will do the same. Let’s take off our shoes and socks and throw them into the void. Forget the morning. Forget our obligations. Forget everything except the very moment. I want you to love yourself as much as you love the winking stars. You want me to love myself as much as I love the kind moon. We can learn to love ourselves together under our glowing friends in the sky. Be honest with me, so I can discover the curious person you are. I will pour all my pain into the wind–catch some and learn every inch of it. Keep it in a jar until it is no more. Tell me, what exactly are you thinking? Empty your mind into my hands and let me sift through each fragile piece of it. I will empty mine too, and mix the pieces until we no longer know whose thoughts are whose. We can organize them later. Undress the hurts within you; expose your demons. We can laugh at their pitiful nakedness together until they shrivel up and plague you no more. Unleash my heart and let it gallop away on a summer breeze with yours by its side. Untie my soul, then tangle it up in yours. Bring my ear to your chest and let me listen to the rhythmic pumping of your heart, pushing life and love through your veins. Gaze into my eyes and study every detail of them. Cradle my face in your hands and learn its shape by heart. Kiss me, taste my insecurities falling away. I want to see your anger and sadness melt. I want us to feel the sparks of freedom that burn deep within our hearts, our bodies, our minds. Stroke my head as I fall asleep. Sit by me and sing softly until I have slipped into dreams. Then lay next to me, so I can wake up to the warmth of your embrace engulfing me. 

A Message to Christians

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, 

I’m mad at Christians. Yes, as a Christian, I am angry at Christians. You know why? So many of us are not doing what we’re supposed to be doing–loving others. We’re condemning. We’re shaming. We’re getting in fights over stupid, petty theological matters. Tell me, what did Jesus do while he walked this earth? He fed people. He empathized. He showed mercy and humility, and told some sweet parables. And, if I remember correctly, the word “Christian” means “little Christ.” Yes, we’re supposed to be like little Jesus people. We should feed people and empathize and be humble. We should tell awesome parables and show mercy. That’s what we’re supposed to be doing, not thumping Bibles on people’s heads. 

One of my favorite Christian songs says, “They will know we are Christians by our love, by our love.” Does it say “They will know we are Christians by the fact that we oppose homosexuality”? No. It does NOT say that, because that’s not how it should be. 

You’d think that was the only thing Christians talk about–homosexuality, I mean. So many of us spend entirely too much time condemning others for not being heterosexual. And you know what? That’s terrible. Tell me, while Jesus was walking on this earth, did he say a single word to condemn someone for being gay? No. He didn’t. And don’t give me crap about “oh, we need to take a stand against this growing problem.” No. You know what you–what we all–should be doing? Taking a stand against hatred. Referring to someone’s sexual orientation as a “problem” is in and of itself a problem. We have all fallen short of the glory of God. You know what this means? This means that everyone has screwed up. Gay people, straight people, white people, black people, men, women, people who like owls, people who don’t like owls, Doctor Who fans, people who aren’t Doctor Who fans. Everybody.

A lot of people take 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 completely out of context. Here are the verses:

“Don’t you realize that those who do wrong will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Don’t fool yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, or who worship idols, or commit adultery, or are male prostitutes, or practice homosexuality, or are thieves, or greedy people, or drunkards, or are abusive, or cheat people—none of these will inherit the Kingdom of God.”

So these people go ahead and say “oh, well that means gay people can’t inherit the Kingdom of God.” Um, what about the fact that we’ve all fallen short? So yes, gay people–also straight people. Remember what I should earlier? Everybody. We’ve all stolen things, or been greedy, or hurt people, or cheated somebody. So, by that logic, nobody is going to inherit the Kingdom of God. But wait! You’ve forgotten verse 11.

“Some of you were once like that. But you were cleansed; you were made holy; you were made right with God by calling on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.”

Don’t forget verse 11. You were cleansed and made holy. Anyone who says “gay people won’t inherit the kingdom of God” has obviously not read verse 11 and should not be taken seriously. Also, remember that good ole’ John 3:16? Whoever believes in him shall have eternal life. It doesn’t say “straight people who believe in him shall have eternal life.” It says whoever. Who can be anybody. Don’t forget the verse that follows–it states that God sent his son into the world not to judge it, but to save us all. Jesus didn’t come to condemn homosexuality. He came to rescue us–homosexuals and heterosexuals alike. 

It’s sad how many gay, lesbian, and bisexual teens feel uncomfortable or even unsafe coming out to their Christian families and friends. This is what happens when we spend so much time energy condemning homosexuality. Imagine you’re a gay teen. Who do you decide to tell first–your Christian friend who openly opposes homosexuality and claims that gay people will not inherit the kingdom of God, or your atheist friend who doesn’t give a crap whether you’re attracted to guys, girls, or freaking refrigerators? I know who I’d pick. And it’s sad, because we’re supposed to be known for our love. It’s all about treating others how you would like to be treated. Friends, I can only hope that if somebody came out to you, you would be a hundred percent encouraging and supportive of them. Don’t be that person who’s remembered as the one who wasn’t supportive. We’re supposed to be witnessing to people–to do this, we love them. That’s it. I don’t care what your view is on homosexuality, you should be absolutely encouraging to your friend, daughter, brother–straight or not. Be loving. Be kind, faithful, and patient. I want my friends to know that I really don’t care who they’re attracted to–girls, guys,  or refrigerators–because I’m not their friend based on who they’re attracted to. That would be a crappy reason to be friends with somebody. I’m friends with my friends because they’re awesome, amazing, and spectacular people. Them being gay would not change that. 

Another reason I’m angry at many Christians is because they seem to believe that those who may have different theological views are not followers of Christ. For instance: the other day I saw someone arguing that only Protestants are really Christians, and that Catholics worship Mary.
Oh. My. Gosh.
STOP.
NO. YOU ARE WRONG.
First of all, Catholics do not worship Mary. There is a difference between veneration and worship. I may write another blog post just to explain this, but for the sake of time (it’s nearly three in the morning) I won’t right now. Second, who said only Protestants are really Christians? Provide scriptural evidence. Do it. (Actually, pretty sure Protestantism didn’t come to be until long after the Bible was written.) So, because you can’t provide scriptural evidence for your argument, it’s invalid. I’ll provide my scriptural evidence here:

“That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.  For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.

Those verses are Romans 10:9-10. That’s it. That’s how you’re saved. There is no need to complicate anything. Christians are Christians–Protestant, Catholic, Orthodox. Mormon, too. 
Speaking of Mormons, a lot of people try to tell me that they’re not really saved. Um, here’s what Mormons believe.

“We, of course, accept Jesus Christ as our Leader, our King, our Savior…the dominant figure in the history of the world, the only perfect Man who ever walked the earth, the living Son of the living God. He is our Savior and our Redeemer through whose atoning sacrifice has come the opportunity of eternal life. Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints pray and worship in the name of Jesus Christ.” 

Read Romans 10:9-10 again. Tell me again how Mormons aren’t Christians? Being saved is really that simple. It’s that simple. No strings attached. So by golly, stop attaching strings!!! In this same argument, it was said that Christians should never be friends with those who aren’t. Now, that’s just stupid. Jesus was friends with Jews and Gentiles alike. Jesus was friends with tax collectors. Hell, Jesus was pretty much friends with everyone who’d accept his friendship. 

How about we all stop getting hung up on the little things? Let’s stop throwing metaphorical fire on those who swear (if I were burned every time I curse, I’d be a pile of ashes by the end of every day). Let’s stop complicating salvation and start acting like Jesus. Let’s start loving people. You know that children’s song “This Little Light of Mine”? There’s a lot of truth in that song. We need to not hide our lights under bushels. Have you ever thought that hating, condemning, and getting caught up in every theological detail is hiding your light? It is. So let’s shine our lights. Please. 

They will know we are Christians by our love. That’s what we should want to be known for. That’s what we should strive for–being totally selfless. We should be that person who spends four hours on the phone with a broken friend. We should be that person who not only gives to the homeless, but makes an attempt to talk to them and treat them like human beings. We should be that person who sticks up for and befriends the kid whom everyone hates, no matter how it would hurt their social status. Love. Absolute and total earth-moving love. Love can shake. It can move and it can heal. God is love. Jesus is God. So, by the transitive property, Jesus is love. We’re supposed to be like Jesus. We’re supposed to be like love.

Believe in Jesus. Love like Jesus.
It’s that simple. 

 

 

The Ages

My short-term memory is okay, I guess–but my long-term memory is impeccable. Sometimes I have to cover up how good my memory is in order to not sound freakish or stalker-like. For instance, I remember someone’s first and last name after not seeing them for seven years and not being particularly close to them to begin with. Sometimes I remember the exact dates I have conversations with people. I can use this to my advantage. It can be really convenient, but it’s also a really terrible curse. 

With this freak memory, I attach time-frames on my life almost obsessively. I categorize, often using exact dates. Usually I only do this with the more recent past–say, the past two years. These are some of the categories. Exact dates mean something really important happened that day that I can probably clearly remember. 
The Age of Naivety: September 2011 to December 22nd, 2011
The Hellish Age: December 22nd, 2011 to February 28th, 2012
The Blissful Age: February 28th, 2012 to March 29th, 2012
The Age of Bitter Tears: March 29th, 2012 to June 2012
The Lonely Age: July 2012 to December 5th, 2012
The Second Hellish Age: December 5th, 2012 to March 21st, 2013
The Age of Rejuvenation: March 21st, 2013 to July 2013
The Age of Discovery: July 2013 to October 29th, 2013

That brings us to the current age. I’m probably going to reference these ages in future posts, so it might be good to know them. Just like The Infamous James. You need to read that post, because I’m going to keep making references to it. That post is key. 

My favorite ages were The Age of Rejuvenation and The Age of Discovery. What wonderful times. As I reflect back on this year, I want to say it’s been an awful year–but there were seven months of awesomeness. It depends on if the good times outweigh the bad. I’m not sure yet. I tend not to think in terms of calendar years, but in terms of school years. For instance, eighth grade was awful. So was seventh. Fifth and sixth were pretty bad, too. Fourth was just eh. Come to think of it, I really haven’t had a good school year since third grade! All my good times seem to get crammed into the summer. That’s just the way it works. 

My least favorite months are January and February. They are awful. I detest them. I loathe them. March is terrible, too–depending on how warm it is. The warmer, the better. The sunnier, the better. April and May are wonderful. The summer is wonderful (and I’m including September in that, too). It’s a bit hot, but I love the sun. October is pretty, but I’m usually starting to have life problems by then. November and December as well. I’m telling you, this is a recurring theme in my life. Over and over again. Always the damn wintertime that gets me down. Wait it out until spring. That’s what I gotta tell myself every day. Spring will be amazing. 

Oh, and Merry Christmas. 

 

My Hectic Love Life

The title of this post is actually kind of ironic, because my love life is anything but hectic. It’s dull. More so, it’s nonexistent. 

So many people my age are talking about that one guy or girl they love. Maybe he’s their boyfriend. Maybe she’s their secret crush. But me? I don’t love anybody. And I want to, I really do. I want to love somebody. I want to feel fluttery and free and blissful. That’s the feeling of love, isn’t it? I don’t know. I can’t say. It’s been too long. 

I develop fifteen-minute crushes, but they soon fade. They’re only a moment. I want somebody to occupy my thoughts and my dreams, somebody to sing me to sleep and play with my hair and love me. God, I sound like I’m in seventh grade again, but I swear this is different. In seventh grade I was bursting with love and could fall for anybody. Now, I’m devoid of love and wishing I could fall for somebody. I’m not even really desiring the relationship, I guess–I’m just desiring the desire! I want to feel love! 

I’ve just become too cold and cynical to be really approachable. Nobody would really want to date someone who glares at couples holding hands in the hallways. 

But the thing is, I wouldn’t be one of those people who flaunts my love for all to see. No, I wouldn’t be that person. Things are so much more romantic unseen. I’m a romantic at heart, I really am. And love is always better in the summer. I dream of piling blankets and pillows in the back of a pickup and gazing up at the stars, then gazing into my lover’s eyes just the same. Then he and I could fall asleep in each other’s arms–not to do anything, just to cuddle–and wake up in the morning with golden summer sunlight streaming through the leaves in the trees. We could play tag in the grass and kiss in the pouring rain. We could go out in a canoe by moonlight, and we could sing. What is more romantic than singing? Maybe watching movies together in a candlelit bedroom or slowly falling asleep as he strokes my hair. I want him to value me. I want him to laugh at my puns and understand my ranting. I want him to love me.

See? Here I am, in love with the idea of love, but with nobody in particular. Oh, love. My love is just floating around, waiting to attach itself to somebody. 

Forgiveness

I have spent years of my life trying to break, destroy, and suppress myself. I’ve spent so much time attempting to “prove them wrong”–everyone who’s ever hurt and bullied and belittled me. It has been so much about them and so little about me. Over these past few years, I have devoted incredible time and energy into “remodeling” myself. There has always been a gnawing fear at the back of my mind that my old tormentors will reappear in my life–whether long-term or only for a moment. and if they were to show up again, I wanted to appear perfect and irresistible. I wanted to show how much of a contrast I am now to the chubby little bubble I once was. So I always asked myself the question: what would they think of me if they came back this very moment? And, if I decided they would still laugh, I would try even harder. It was like furiously cleaning and remodeling a house for a guests that will most likely not even show up.

This, I believe, was one of the other roots of my perfectionism. I wanted to appear pleasing. Even over the summer, the acme of my life, the pinnacle of my recent existence, I was only striving to run as far as I could from the ten-year-old version of myself that i have always regarded as detestable. At the same time, though, I have been dragging that ten-year-old girl all across existence, scolding her. I have not released her. Deep in the pits of my mind, I’ve always thought it my fault for being tormented. If only I’d kept my mouth shut. If only I’d blended in a little more and not laughed at all the wrong times. If only, if only , if only. I have never forgiven myself for my fifth grade year. 

Out of this unforgiveness, again, came my efforts to suppress myself. I shifted about like water, unsure of who I really was or who I could be. The diamond of my true self was tossed away and buried as I searched for a better one among piles of pebbles and dirt. I could never let that diamond be seen again for fear that it would be taunted and mocked again. But no matter how far I tried to stray from the buried diamond, it always turned up right beside me again. It did not want to be left and forgotten. So I kept it with me–but tucked away in my pocket. I never showed the world my diamond, but I displayed the dirty pebbles I was trying to pass off as genuine. Then, when others found me dull, I assumed it was because they had gotten a view of the diamond in my pocket. So I hid it even deeper. I could never see the faces of my old tormentors look upon that diamond. Ever.

But in the past few days, I realize that the best revenge is not desperately attempting to perfect and change myself. The best vengeance is not striving to the flawless model of a girl that I’ve always tried to be. The way to get back is to be exactly who I’m meant to be–that fifth grader. To show that diamond. The more I am around people I trust, the more I realize how little that diamond has changed. It retains its old beauty even after years of being kept in the dark. It remains mostly unchanged. And the parts of it that have fallen away–the parts that I’ve grown out of–leave the diamond looking even more beautiful than before.

What better way to say “f-ck you” to the old tormentors than to remain unchanged after their repeated attempts to break me down? i hope, if ever should they reappear in my life, that they see exactly who they saw four years ago–only a little older. I cannot continue to hold unforgiveness toward an old version of myself. I cannot go on scolding myself for my previous shortcomings. Of course a ten-year-old would fall short when held against the strict standards of her unforgiving fourteen-year-old critic. It is not fair to scrutinize myself in such a manner. Nobody expects a ten-year-old to speak, behave, and conduct oneself like a fourteen-year-old, just as one would not expect a fourteen-year-old to conduct oneself and take on the responsibilities of an eighteen-year-old. So why should I? Why should I drag myself around because of actions old and stale? 

My ten-year-old self can be at peace knowing that her diamond can be free and truly appreciated by those who love it. She can rest now. I can release her. I no longer expect her to be fourteen at ten. She can be ten now. She can be free. 

The Story of the Lunchroom Bell

Here is the result of my inability to fall asleep yet again. It is a story–not one of knights and dragons, but of the true sort. Here is the story of the lunchroom bell.

 

During lunch my fourth grade year, the cafeteria often became quite noisy. When this happened, the lunch monitors would take medium-sized bells out of their apron pockets and ring them–over and over and over again. The chatter would dull for about thirty seconds and then rise right back up again. The bells didn’t get to me at first. As time wore on, however, they grated on me more and more. It was illogical and stupid. I felt that if I, a nine-year-old, could think of a better solution than the adults could, something was wrong. I decided to do something about it.
My first method was not effective. I raised my hand and asked one of the lunch monitors if she could help open my milk carton–you know, to get her in reaching distance. I then got up and threw away a packet of ketchup, which would serve as a distraction. While I was doing this, my friend and accomplice–whom I will call Beatrice–balled up napkins and stuffed them in the bell that was sticking out of the lunch monitor’s apron pocket. She soon noticed and responded with, “I am watching you.” 
We (my accomplice and I) were freaked, but it wasn’t enough to deter us from our goal. Our next approach was to make life absolutely miserable for that lunch monitor. 
My friend had to go to the bathroom, so she raised her hand and asked. The lunch monitor, for some reason, said no. I could see the look of desperation on my friend’s face. It was an emergency. Beatrice needed my help. Angry, I used my best weapon–my mouth.
“If you don’t let her go, she’ll pee on the floor, and you’ll have to clean it up.” Beatrice giggled a little as I sat there, perfectly calm. The lunch monitor was caught off guard. 
“No, your mommy will have to clean it up.”
Oh snap.
It made me laugh, though–the ridiculousness of the thought. My mother driving to school to clean up my friend’s urine. Yet again, I was seeing faults in the logic of adults. Something was happening in my mind. For the first time in my life, I was no longer seeing all adults as ideal, perfect beings. I was questioning. I was beginning to wonder if they were wrong and I was right. 
The situation escalated. With Beatrice, I gathered together a small group of rebels to fight against the oppression of the lunchroom bell. We gathered as much information as we could on the offending lunchroom monitor. Word of our little uprising spread, as all things do in the fourth grade. Teachers tried to get involved, but I did my best to shut them out of it. This was my moment. My time to shine. We wrote letters to the principal and the administration. We signed petitions. I had started something, and nobody was going to stop it. Finally, I gathered my group and we marched down to speak with the assistant principal in person. We gave him the petitions. We explained ourselves. Finally, after all our fighting, he obliged. By the next Friday, the lunchroom bell was to be no more.
The day after our rebel victory, even the sixth graders knew about the changes to come. Everyone was excited. I was sky-high. A big eleven-year-old asked me when the changes were to be implemented, and I was in the middle of telling him when I felt a grasp on my arm.
The lunch monitor.
I had driven her to the end of her patience. I didn’t know why she was interrupting a perfectly harmless conversation to deal with the issue, but she was. She had had enough. I was dragged into the assistant principal’s office–where just days earlier I had led my little group into “battle”. The only reason I began to cry was because I was afraid that the talk with the assistant principal would go on my permanent record, and no universities would ever accept me because they would think I was a bad kid. I saw myself as a senior in high school, applying everywhere, and being rejected every time. “Sorry, you had a talk with the assistant principal when you were nine. We just don’t want sketchy figures at our school.” So I cried. I cried a lot. I don’t even remember what the assistant principal was saying, or what I was saying–I just remember lots of crying, and staring at a very attractive potted plant through very watery eyes.
I was ushered back into the classroom. Because I’d been sent to the office at the end of lunch, and the talk had lasted for a good long while, there was a lesson already being taught without me. It felt incredibly awkward, walking in late with my trusty blue clipboard and a tear-streamed face. In fact, the class was being given a special talk. 
The talk was about respect, and had been planned due to the recent bell events. I knew the talk was really meant for me, so I felt ashamed. The shame was so great that I felt ashamed of every single bit of me that moment–my face, my clothes, and my clipboard. Even the clipboard I was ashamed of! Not only had I blown my chances at getting into college, but I’d let down my entire class and indirectly forced them to endure a long and boring lecture. What would I do with my life? Would I have to sell the wax from my Babybel cheese on the streets for nickels and dimes? I was absolutely crushed. They–the adults–had broken me down. I was just another student. They had tamed me, the wild beast. Two years from then, I’d be a smiling safety patrol on the bus. The days of battle were over.
But I’ve never been quite the same since that year. The spark has been ignited. Deep within, I question those whose power I am under. I will never be quite content with authority ever again. 

I was beaten down into the model student mold that day in fourth grade, but there is still a part of me that will always refuse to be just another smiling face, just another student ID number. 

By the way, the lunchroom changes were implemented on Friday, as promised. A noise detector was put in the cafeteria–it was a traffic light that would supposedly turn red when the cafeteria became too noisy. Due to frequent malfunctions, the traffic lights were quickly done away with. They were replaced with red, yellow, and green cups. The cups were placed on each table and stacked. When an individual table became too loud, a lunch monitor would come by and put the yellow cup on top–as a warning. If the noise persisted, the cup would be changed to red. This method proved much more effective than the bell, despite the cups being ripped, defaced, changed when the monitors weren’t looking, and used to hide trash and leftover food.

So, yes. You can blame Beatrice and me for the tacky cups on all the tables in my old elementary school. They’re tacky, but I’m proud of them in a way. Maybe I really have done something with my life. 

How teenagers are viewed/sick of generalizations

When I was little, I was afraid of teenagers because some of them looked really angry and tired all the time. Maybe a little sadistic. I never got too close to them. Some of them looked really grumpy, and they’d kick at your snowman while scowling and talking to themselves, pulling their jacket tighter.
From my teenage perspective, I understand it now. In fact, I actually did all those things today. The snowman didn’t fall over. It just wobbled. And I wouldn’t do that if anyone was watching–I’m not that cruel.

But seriously, how do people view us?

Overly scared people see teenagers as troublemakers who love to graffiti, have reckless sex lives, and smoke weed all day. That’s not really a good representation of us. I mean, there are always those few kids, but again–not all of us. Not most of us, either. You know what I do with my time? I sleep. I eat. I listen to my music and blog. Several of my friends are really into certain YouTubers. A lot of us join sports and clubs. We all do homework–well, most of us. Homework, homework, homework. School. Waking up early.

So, yeah. I’m kind of sick of generalizations. In fact, I’m not even like most “average” teenagers. You know what I do during lunch? I don’t talk to people (ew, social interaction). I work on creating my fictional culture. And you know what? I don’t care. That’s the difference between me in middle school and me now, I think. I’m not going to talk during lunch or wear Hollister skinny jeans. I’m not going to be another clone. I just don’t f-cking want to. If you have a problem with that, you can go live in the Land of Judgmental Assholes. Be my guest. I’ve heard it’s chilly there, though–might want to bring a jacket. Or will the fire you bring upon others keep you warm enough?

Weird dreams and more things that make me angry

This blog is gonna go through a little construction. And by construction, I mean I’m literally so sick and tired of writing about my freaking life. I’m so tired of it. I feel like I’m just recycling topics because my life is a boring vacuum. I don’t want to stop blogging–I mean, I could, I probably wouldn’t miss it too much–but this is my place to be just me. I only feel interesting when I’m here behind a screen, where I can think my words over. I’m a writer, not a speaker. Speaking is not for me. So I email, text, blog, IM, pass notes–I don’t say as many silly things that way. And also, I’m just better at it. I can express myself more.

But enough about that. Today, I’m going to write about a dream–nightmare–I had last night. Does anyone actually have really pleasant, wonderful dreams? For me, having dreams means having nightmares. I don’t even dream that much, which I guess in my case is good. But last night, obviously, I did…

Guess who it involves? Guess. The Infamous James! Of course it is. (I’m going to keep referencing that post for all eternity, so you should probably read it if you haven’t already.) In my dream, I was doing push-ups, when James approached me and started kicking at my hands. I refused to look up–I knew who it was, but I didn’t want to admit it. Nor did I want to lay eyes on his face again. Eventually, though, I did. He looked the same as he had two years ago (this dream was set in the present).

“Hey Abigail, I came to apologize.”

“Oh?” I stood up. He was my height now. He’d always been my height, maybe even a bit shorter–but always seemed so much taller.

“Yeah.” James then came very close to me, put his arm around me (which made me quite uncomfortable) and grinned–the same grin, the familiar one, without any trace of sincerity. “Did I really hurt you that much?” At that point, I knew he was only trying to trick me yet again. I pulled away from him, but he laughed and followed me. From that day on, he just showed up everywhere in my life, all the time. He was inescapable. Nothing I did would ever make him take me seriously. It was seventh grade all over again. The end.

Again, it’s really just a recurring dream. Well, kind of. It changes every time, but the theme is the same–the reappearance of James in my life. That, or another terrible sleepover. My dreams are recycling themselves and presenting themselves in different forms! The same two dreams! Kinda strange.

Random thought:

You know what makes me angry? The way society totally glorifies life. That sounds weird. Like, they glam everything up so it’s perfect. Why do we grow up with sun and rainbows when we’ll only fall and realize that life isn’t entirely made of such things? On the topic of James, I’m talking about relationships. We grow up with Prince Charming and all that crap, and some connection is made in our mind–hey, that could be me! So we attempt this, when we haven’t taken into consideration that we’re like, twelve. Thirteen. Fourteen. When do ninety percent of the boys stop being asses? It’s sometime before then. So we expect a Prince Charming relationship with an immature guy. That’s what happens. I want someone to blame for me being a fiery, boy-crazy, immature, naive, insane kid in seventh grade. Who do I blame? Everyone who puts sappy “first love” stories in the media. How dare they glorify the primitive species of Middle School Boy?

I’m probably surrounded by James-like boys at school. But I’ve learned to shut up and sit down. Don’t interact. Don’t talk. If you shut your mouth, you’ll be fine. Thus, eighth grade. Nobody really said or did anything mean to me then. Why? Because I became invisible. That’s what I want to be. Invisible. So I’m not bothered by the annoy jerks at school.

Moral of all of this? Don’t talk to anyone unless you know them.

Kidding. You should take risks. I just haven’t provided evidence that suggests you should. But you should. No matter how much I make it sound like you shouldn’t.