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Do You Remember? 5-27-15

We shared a soul once
Do you remember?

The way we danced in the wind
On the leaves

We were one with everything
As we were one with each other

We were sparks from a flame
We were dew on grass

We were pebbles and ripples
And bubbles on a stream

We flew with fireflies and hummingbirds
And we swam with tadpoles frogs and fish

We experienced everything together
You and I

We were anger and fear
We were sadness and grief

And we were love
We shared love
We gave love
We
Were
Love!

We made a decision
One day
That we wanted
To experience
For ourselves

We wanted our own life
Our own love
Our own soul

And how wonderful
Our many lives have been
Spanning all the sands of time

Did you find
What you were looking for
Dear one?

I know I did
But I found it in you
Did you know that?

No matter where our lives took us
I found that life in you
I found that soul in you
I found that love in you

Because we shared a soul once
Do you remember?

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Let Me Be Free and I Will Learn

My previous post is about today’s broken education system.  This poem perfectly compliments that post.

Let Me Be Free And I Will Learn

My mind works
In its own mysterious ways.
There are some things
That I can do
And some I can’t.
They try to help me
And I know they mean well,
But they just
Don’t
Stop.
It takes all my control
Not to scream in rage.
To run out of the room
Like a caged lioness
Finally escaping.
 
You can’t contain
One with imagination.
I could so easily free myself,
Lose myself to my imagination.
As I once nearly did.
But I didn’t.
I grounded my feet
And kept my head in the clouds.
Doesn’t that mean something?
Can’t they understand?
 
Let me learn
In the way that I can
And I will learn.
I gave this world
A second chance.
I do love this world,
But my mind will always work
In it’s own mysterious ways.

Education – An Outdated, Broken System

There are so many things wrong with today’s education system.  There are many people who would disagree with that statement.  These are probably people who are favored by the current system.  The evidence of the brokenness of this system is not necessarily shown in any numbers or statistics.  It is, however, shown in many, many, individual experiences, such as mine.  I started out in a small, nature and spiritual oriented private elementary school.  I was in preschool for 2 years, had nap-time every day in those years.  Come kindergarten, I was just starting to learn to read.  I was already a bookworm in spite of the fact that it was one, maybe two, little kindergarten books that I read over and over again everyday.  Then came the day that there was the announcement for anyone who wanted to participate in the Christmas Eve choir/service to report to the Family Room during recess.  So what did this little 6 year old girl do?  She went to the family room, not realizing that announcement was really meant for people first grade and up.  Even after I was told that, I insisted on being in that service even though I couldn’t even read the sheet music yet.  Instead of refusing me because I was too young, they gave me a folder with one sheet of music in it and had me sing along as best I could.  That was the beginning of my 12 years of participating in school choir.  In first grade came math.  It wasn’t standardized like it is in public schools.  No, we all had a folder of worksheets in a certain order to do at our own pace.  As such, I of course was doing multiplication in first grade, speeding ahead of some second graders.  We had a similar system for English/spelling/grammar.  They had a series of work books.  A few of us first graders were already part way through the fourth book before finding out that we weren’t actually supposed to go that far and were given the intermediate binder of worksheets.  At this school, even if I was only in kindergarten and first grade, I was truly allowed to explore my full potential.

So of course second grade was the year that I had to switch from this wonderful little school to the bigger, albeit still small in the grand scheme of things (still only 300 people pre-K through 6), public elementary school.  What was the worst part of the switch for little 8 year old me? Going back to addition! Oh, the horror!  Here I was doing multiplication in first grade and I had to go backwards?  I hated it and of all things, that was the worst part of the switch for me.

Fast forward to sixth grade it got out that I believed in fairies.  And this was of course … a bad thing?  I got ridiculed for, essentially having an over active imagination.  Granted I still do believe in fairies and everything else, but I learned real quick that the only way I was going to maintain any sanity/dignity with the other kids was if I channeled that belief into writing and creating a new world.  So that’s what I did

That, however, is veering from the point of this little mini-autobiography.  Okay, sixth grade, let’s start with English and writing.  I had a wonderful teacher for fifth and sixth grade.  It was still public school, but she got me, granted she also had very high expectations.  For writing and reading we had a reading/writing notebook.  For the first half of the year, we had to write a book report every week.  I was terrible at that.  You wouldn’t expect it, my having been a bookworm since kindergarten, but I was terrible at writing assignments that were all formal with specific regulations that had to be adhered.  Now, of course when I did manage to actually write those summaries, she said I should write book reviews and summaries professionally because I was so good at doing it.  However, that was only when I was truly excited about the book.  Anyway, move on to the second part of the year, the reading notebook changed to a writing notebook.  Instead of having to write about the books we were reading we simply wrote back and forth with the teacher.  And she did indeed actually consciously respond to all of us.  I loved that part of the year because of that.  So moral of that is, when I was restricted in what I had to write and how I had to write it, I slacked off and didn’t do it very much, but when it switched and I could write whatever I wanted?  Oh how much I wrote.  I started a couple of books that year, I have since dropped those ideas but still, I had inspiration when I was allowed to respond to whatever inspiration brought me.

In terms of math, of course I was given the test to determine whether I would be in advanced math the next year and I passed, as expected.

So again, fast forward to senior year.  I’m in choir, I’m in high school calculus in spite of already having one more math credit than needed, and I’m in advanced English.  I thought it would be a good year, but almost immediately that changed.  I also had Government that first semester.  That class involved a lot of writing assignments and as mentioned before, although I’m a writer I was terrible with writing assignments.  So I started having anxiety about that class.  Next came my anxiety with advanced English, as that also involved a lot of writing assignments.  So as early as September, I went to the guidance counselor to find out if I had any alternate options as to how to take those classes.  I was met with a resounding no and an attempt to get me to identify what, specifically was giving me trouble and anxiety.  Problem was, I really didn’t know, not yet anyway.  So in October the anxiety was worse.  Calculus, my first class of the day, was fine, I enjoyed that class.  But then English was my second class of the day and there the anxiety started.  So I went to the guidance counselor a few more times trying to change things.  I was trying to take charge of my own education, as well as emotional well being.  But it was then that I gave up.  So throughout November and December, the anxiety got worse and worse, I was crying multiple times a day and I dreaded just entering the building each morning.

Now we come to the day of the Winter Concert.  In the middle of the day, I didn’t feel good and I wanted to go home.  So I tried to get signed out but met with the obstacle of having no emergency contacts apart from my mom who didn’t have a phone at work.  By the time everything was resolved I had had a full on anxiety attack, crying and crying and feeling trapped and wanting to run.  That was the last day I went to school.  I was able to get home, I went back for the concert that night, stayed home the next few days until the holiday break started.  The break was wonderful, I was hanging out with friends.  Then came the last day of break, the next day I would have to go back.  By now the anxiety was so great that I could not handle the thought of entering that building again.  I realized that even if I somehow managed to make it to graduation, I would lose all the emotional well being, balance and dignity I had left.  I needed to forget about everyone else and think about me.  So I emailed my guidance counselor and a few teachers saying I wasn’t coming back, I was dropping out.  I had a very clear plan of where I was going next, starting work, getting my GED and eventually going to college when I was ready.  When all was said and done I was tutored for my last two remaining credits and I did get my diploma.

It’s been two years since then, and I am only just about to start college in the fall.  I am in a wonderful space, I have wonderful friends, I know exactly what I’m going to study in college and I just feel so amazingly wonderful about where I’m going.

I do not, in any way, regret what has happened to lead me here.  I do, however regret that they had to happen.  Let’s go all the way back to the change between the private school and public school.  What would have happened if the public school system wasn’t so standardized and operated more like the private school?  I would have continued doing multiplication and going only up from there at the speedy pace I was going.  As it is now I got part way through high school calculus.  If I had been able to continue at the pace I was going, I bet I would already be about half way through college math.  I would have been able to use my heart and passion more in English and writing more.  I would probably already be published by now.  And when senior year came around, there would be no anxiety because when I couldn’t learn in a certain way, I would have been able to work with the teachers to discover how I do learn and adapt the class to that.  This is the way the education needs to be.  Everyone is intelligent, there are no stupid people.  But everyone learns and sees the world differently.  Instead of working against that, we need to work with that.  Let people go at their own pace, give them help when and only when they need it, let them keep going when they’re on a roll and when there’s an assignment that they can’t connect with, find a way to adhere to their passions.  If the book they’re supposed to write about doesn’t attract them, but another book with just as much literary value does, let them do the same assignment with that book.

Don’t wait until someone says they’re going to drop out to find a way to prevent it.  Start at the beginning.

Lolana Sarina Anianita Senthorthia, Enchantress of Lamoralin

Taxes – Bureaucracy at work.

So I just filed taxes for the first time and let me tell you, there is something wrong with the way our country operates things. First off, when did we learn how to fill out taxes in school? Never. So that’s the first issue, not enough education about the things we actually need to know how to do in order to survive in this world.

Next issue, there is not enough easily accessible information out there. When you don’t know something, it is insanely difficult to find the information you’re looking for without already knowing. It is really difficult to establish a direct line of contact. I think there should be a way to have direct email contact or something of that sort with someone in the IRS that can answer questions and guide you through things. There needs to be a direct line of contact or else people are just left hanging, either having to struggle to get information, or follow their gut and hope to dear god they haven’t made a mistake.

There isn’t enough notification. Yes we get our W-2’s or 1099-MISC’s or whatever else in the mail and we know we have to do something. But the instructions aren’t very accessible, and by this I mean easily understood. What if we think there’s something wrong with what we received? Without a direct line of contact, how do we find the answer?

Also, filing taxes is way more complicated than it should be. Why is it so complicated when it could just be “This is who I am, this is how much I earned at this job, from this employer.” Boom, what else is there? Oh right, we have to do the math ourselves, figure out how to report the income in just the right way ourselves. And then, no matter how sure we are that we did things correctly, we still have to hope to dear god that nothing comes back to bite us. There is so much pressure to do things in precisely the right way, what happens when we make honest mistakes? I sure as hell hope that if I made a mistake, the fact that I am a first time filer is taken into account. Even if I wasn’t, I wouldn’t have filled things out the way I did if I didn’t think it was right. How the hell am I supposed to know if I did something wrong when, as I said before, there isn’t enough damn information. And yes I know that there are indeed dishonest people out there, but with all this technology and internet out there, you’d think there would be much easier ways to report income, pay taxes and get your refunds that don’t involve so much fear that you could have done something wrong. Our government system needs some serious revising in so many ways, this doesn’t even cover the icing on the cake. There are so many easier and simpler ways of doing things, but as I said bureaucracy at work. I got the email that the IRS has accepted my tax return. Here’s hoping…

For all of you out there filing taxes this year: Good Luck!

For anyone who doesn’t have to this year: Enjoy it while you can.

The Life of a Beacon

The Life of a Beacon

To be a beacon
Is to be strong
To help those around you
To share wisdom and support

But even the strongest flame
Can waver in the wind
Even the strongest flame
Sometimes needs a shield

But when you are a beacon
You fear failure
You fear letting others down
You don’t want them to see you waver

But what strength is there
Without vulnerability
There is no flame
Without oxygen
Wood
And someone to light it

And on those windy nights
The flame needs a shield
We all need support
Our beacon most of all

So if you are a beacon
Always supporting everyone around you
When you waver or falter
Don’t hide it

Don’t push through
When you know you can’t make it alone
Let yourself be shielded
Let us support you

For we would never
Be worth your support
If we didn’t

Never underappreciate your beacon
Because they will never
Underappreciate you

When the flame
Of the beacon wavers
It is our turn
To be the beacon

About My Last Post (The Power Of Our Generation)

In response to my previous post I was told that while it is good to speak up about important things, I need to be cautious and wise about the way in which I speak. Apparently teens have been taken into custody for blog content similar to my previous post. I don’t want to take it down because I feel it’s something that needs to be said and heard. And as is proven by the picture I included in said post, I’m not the first person to say these things, I just said it in a different way and added my own energy to it. But I do understand how to certain people it could be viewed in a way in which it was not intended. So, while I know that the world needs to change and I feel and hope that change is happening and coming, here is my disclaimer. At this time I am in no way a part of any protests and have no intention of partaking in any protests. I have no plans of any actions against the government or anything else that could be inferred from my previous post. I’m just someone who sees what is happening in the world and sees potential for real change, whether it comes in this generation or the next. Anyway, that might not be a perfect disclaimer but I just wanted to make sure that it’s known that I live a peaceful insignificant life and that the opinions I post don’t represent anything that should incite concern.

The Power of Our Generation (let’s say born in the ’90’s give or take a few years)

I’ve seen this go around a few times on Facebook, I apologize for the fact that I can’t credit it as I have absolutely no idea who created it.

Anyway a few days ago I had a conversation with a couple of people about the current state of affairs in the world and particularly, the US.  We were talking about how it seems, as time goes on there are more and more incidents of police brutality, shootings, what have you, in less and less time and it seems like there is a climax coming soon. There are more protests and more people protesting and it seems like the resistance is growing.

It does indeed make sense that my/our generation outnumbers the baby boomers because most of us are children or grandchildren of baby boomers and the rate of population increase hasn’t gone down much. And yes between TV shows, movies, books, celebrities, and the corruption of news, a lot of us are couch potatoes just watching TV and playing video games all day. But there is something that whoever wants us distracted failed to realize. In giving us books, TV shows and movies, they gave us Fandoms. Global networks of teens and young adults who are communicating with each other over social networks. A while back Justin Bieber said something about Jared Padelecki that enraged the Supernatural fandom. The result? Everyone who could, in just about every fandom I know of, watched the next episode of Supernatural that aired and it became the most watched episode in a long time and got the show renewed for another season. This is the power of our generation.

We made a change overnight, with just the vastness of our numbers. No wonder they’ve tried to smother us because it’s true, that if we all directed that energy to the current state of our country and the world, we could create change overnight.

There is an argument to be made that we now have a mentality of waiting for the next installment whether it be an episode, movie or book, instead of actually doing something to create change. But that’s only because we haven’t gotten our spark yet. We need a Mockingjay.

So by all means, give us more vapid shows and music. The true artists out there know how to sneak the real stuff in. Meanwhile our numbers and power will keep growing and when the ones holding us down make the wrong move that gives us our Mockingjay. We will be waiting to give them hell. And in fact it’s happening right under their noses. In trying to keep us down, they literally gave us the tools to create a successful revolution. And that right there is the power of our generation.

Sarina Marie

Remembering Robin Williams

I’m actually tearing up a little right now. I guess it’s finally hitting home that he’s gone. This movie is some of the last Robin Williams we’ll ever see. Until they make a movie about him, that is, and you know they will. I hope that they have some clips and pictures of him as tribute at the end, I’m sure people in theaters everywhere will be crying… or laughing, I think he’d like that better. On that note, what better movie to go out with?

Now that I know a little bit more about him, I feel a kinship with him. He had depression and anxiety, but that didn’t stop him from being one of the best people this world and the next will ever know. One of my favorite clips of him is the video of him with Koko the Gorilla. That must have been one of the best moments of his life, to be able to communicate with this person who had unconditional love and no judgement. I imagine there’s a part we’re not seeing where he just broke down and cried with the relief of it. Anyway I’m going to add that video as well as the video of Koko mourning him.

Disclaimer

I’m not good with research so if something is not accurate feel free to comment. Also when I’m talking about books, movies or tv shows THERE MAY BE SPOILERS!!! I will say something in the title of a post if I know it has big spoilers, but it is too much hassle to completely avoid spoilers so read at your own peril.