Quest

Life is hard. That’s just what we signed up for. At least, that’s what I believe. We go through our lives almost absent-mindedly, searching for something that we don’t really know, unable to really put our finger on exactly what we’re searching for. I remember, years ago, I sat on the front porch with my mom in the summer while the sprinklers ran, and we watched in silence for a few minutes. Then I said something.

“I’m on a quest, Mom. I don’t know what that quest is, but I’m on a quest, and I’m searching for something, and hopefully I’ll find it someday.”

She told me that she was happy with that, proud of me, and would aid me in my ‘quest’. That was when I was nineteen and told that I was in Congestive Heart Failure and not only needed a heart transplant but a liver transplant as well. Multiple organ transplant survivors are relatively unheard of, and the ones with my specific condition…let’s just say there is a zero percent margin of life after the transplant happens. But I didn’t look at it as the end of my life. Sure, I was pretty immature at nineteen, but I had realized after a lot of crying and facing one of my deepest fears that I was on a quest. Perhaps it is to obtain something. Perhaps it is to help someone I haven’t met yet. It’s four years later and I still haven’t figured it out. But I think it’s important for us to be on these quests, journeys, and such because we need to be moving in someway, otherwise we stay where we are and become stagnant.

Ever since that day, I’ve accepted that I’m a free soul who looks at the trees at twenty-three years of age in the summer and imagines being a little fairy with red hair and a dress, sitting on the branch, playing a flute made from a piece of grass and singing with the birds. Or, while my mom drives, I imagine myself flying through the cloudless sky with wings like a bird. When I see parks with children playing, I imagine running through the grass barefoot, and feeling the earth against my skin. It has been these little daydreams that have kept me going during the harsh realities of my life.

In the last four years since I’ve needed a transplant (I still technically need one but I’m not on the list because my health is significantly better) I have faced countless of my deepest fears, and I’ve begun to wonder if I’ll face all of my greatest and deepest fears before I die. If so, I’ve accepted it. I’m okay facing my deepest fears, because I have really matured. Even since getting my foot run over by a car tire that wasn’t even a week ago, I’ve changed. Some of my deepest fears that I’ve faced is betrayal from lifelong friends, being alone, facing suicide, facing transplant, sending my mom to the Emergency Department knowing good and well that I may never see her again, speaking my darkest secrets and facing my deepest pain from the depths of my mind that have popped up since the pain of that tire running over my foot. I’ve learned a lot about myself. I’ve learned that once I get injured, it all comes back. I can pretend it doesn’t exist for long, but once I get injured or sick, it all comes back.

First of all, I had a wonderful childhood. I was a happy and free child that ran in the grass, ate worms, and gorged on chicken nuggets at McDonald’s. But my childhood was far from perfect. I have faced so much violence in my life, and some memories of that violence had been long buried deep beneath my everyday thoughts. In short, I forced myself to forget. I remember being chased by someone I love who had a screwdriver and slamming my door against them, trying not to get hurt. I remember that same person pulling a scarf tight around my throat so I couldn’t breathe (I don’t wear scarves anymore; I don’t care how cold it is). I remember a ‘friend’ preying on me when I was eleven years old and he was sixteen. Thankfully that type of abuse didn’t go further than inappropriate topics and him crossing my boundaries, but it was still scarring. All of these things have come back to me since my foot got ran over, and I face the reality that I need to go to therapy when I can to try and understand these things that happened to me, and why they happened to me.

I remember hating everyone. I hated every single person on this planet and trusted no one – save for my mother. She is the only one I have always – and will always – trust and love. The hatred is gone now, but I still think about that day outside, watching the water sparkle in the grass in the sunlight and telling my mom about my quest. I still wonder what that quest is. But I find myself to be a free spirit who loves fantasy and children’s books, and I know that whatever this quest is, I’ll discover it someday, and I’ll make it. Though I’m tired, I still fight and I still try. But sometimes exhaustion can beat a person to their knees. That’s why I pray. When life beats you to your knees, pray. That’s my little piece of advice.

So, in this long-winded and jumbled up message, I hope that I made sense. I’m still on that quest, and I’m finding out more about myself, little by little, every single day. I love who I am, and I wouldn’t change myself for the world.

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Authenticity

Society, and us – as a people – is an interesting thing. I like to think of it as an interesting entity, because in my mind, entities have thoughts of their own. They don’t follow orders and they certainly aren’t computers. But like computers, society thrives and operates on driven commands. But every so often, there’s one person that steps out of that line of command to start something new, and that’s where the magic begins.

I want to be one of those people.

I never questioned the way that I saw things from the way the media taught me until I grew old enough to see their lies. I don’t trust a news anchor as far as I could throw him, and any politician is no different. I don’t care how good they claim to be; I don’t trust them. If I had to ask someone for advice, truthfully, I would go to the nearest war veteran (I know a few in my neighborhood) that fought in wars and have incredible life experience. I would ask them what I should do, what they would propose for me. An idea, or a concept. Why? Because those that have fought in war have seen the world for what it truly is. A grizzly, nasty place that just happens to have something beautiful in the places you’d least expect it.

I’ve always had a deep respect for war veterans and that’s probably because of how my mother taught me about them, teaching me to respect them and telling me stories of things they’ve gone through, tragedies they’d seen, and having come out on the other side to be successful in the rest of their personal lives with their families. Of course, such stories don’t always end up that way, but I prefer to focus on the good. I’ve always wanted to enlist for some type of job within the military, but I can’t. My health condition is too severe. But I often ask myself, if my health wasn’t bad…would I enlist?

Perhaps that’s why I write stories about war. A book that I’ve been trying to publish for over a decade – which I am now taking two years off to think about – is about a war that is over a century old. Most of the ideas I have for books or animations or anything like that include war, fighting, and understanding who they really are in order to help those around them. I’ve never been much into military movies, but put me in front of a fantasy world with war and a good protagonist and I’ll sit there for hours.

I wouldn’t call in a fascination, I’d call it admiration. I often put myself in someone else’s shoes, and I do this every day. When I go to the grocery store, I imagine myself in the clerk’s shoes. How tired they must be, how many times they’ve been yelled at today, and how they might be worried about paying the bills with a minimum wage job. It’s this part of me that sympathizes deeply with war veterans, because there is nothing like seeing war that someone who hasn’t seen it can never understand. I will never truly understand war and the loss and the death until I see it for my very eyes. And let me just say: I hope that if I do ever get a glance at it, I hope that it’s after the war and when people are on their way to better lives, constructing more homes and sanctuaries from the ruins.

It’s this needless fighting that makes me think about society. Who would we be if we took away all of this external violence? Who would we be if we stopped to think of the ripple of our every action that reaches to every corner of the earth? I often think of that, and I try to be as authentically me as possible. But in a world filled with people telling you who to be, it can be difficult to be who you need to be.

But slowly, little by little, I’m getting better at it. And I hope you are, too.

Just a Quick Post

So, things are going slightly better and slightly worse regarding my crushed foot. The foot itself is doing better, but since I’m healing, I’m burning so many calories that I’ve lost two pounds in two days. Of course, that could be a fluke, but I’m really not thinking very well and I’m incredibly weak. Because of my heart condition, I burn more calories in a day than most because my heart works so hard to keep me alive, and now I might be burning more, though that’s just a hypothesis. It’s all yet to be seen.

I can read my words that I just wrote and think they were written by a robot but that’s just because I really don’t feel good and my head is really foggy. But please don’t worry about me, I’m alright. I always am. *smiles*

I just wanted to write this quick post to say that my blog posts for the next few weeks or months are going to be irregular at best, and nonexistent at the worst. I’m lying down during the day and I’m trying to heal, so hopefully things will heal fast, but we never know.

Anyway, thank you to all of you who read my blog and like my posts here on WordPress. You all bring happy tears to my eyes and I hope that I can continue to write for you on a semi-regular basis, but for now, I need to take care of my foot and health.

I hope you all are having a wonderful day! (night, afternoon, evening….)

Ouch!

So, some things happened today that I’m sure I’m going to remember for the rest of my life. My foot got ran over by a car. Driven by my mom. The funny thing is that I always saw things like that happen on TV, and I always wondered if it hurt a lot. Well, it does. I can tell you that!

Also, it is not my mom’s fault. She thought I was in the car and began to drive forward, therefore having the tire roll onto my left foot. When I screamed, she stopped. I kept screaming ‘back’ at the top of my lungs, but my mom didn’t understand what I was trying to say because I was crying so hard until my brother jumped out of the car and told our mom that the tire was laying on my foot. Thankfully no bones are broken – that we know of. Right now, the swelling is too extensive for the X-rays to really see whether there is a fracture. But it is considered a ‘crush injury’. Thankfully my mom stopped when she did, because if she had kept going and broken my foot and leg, considering my heart condition and my overall health, they might have had to amputate the foot depending on the level of damage. The blood circulation to my feet is very poor, and I’m very lucky that it hit my left foot and not my right, because my right foot/leg was permanently damaged in surgery when I was a month old, and they almost had to amputate it then. They opted not to because my leg recovered remarkably well, but if my mom had ran over my right foot, it for sure would have had immediate emergency surgery and a very high chance of amputation. So, my left foot hurts like the dickens but at least I still have both of them! I’m grateful for that!

My poor mother feels so bad and I keep telling her to forgive herself. Someone else that we know said, ‘what parent hasn’t accidentally hurt their children in some way?’ I’m grateful that gave her comfort, because I’m really more concerned about my mom than I am about my own foot. My mom is a single parent and it’s difficult to be a single parent. Add that to running over your already-medically-sick daughter’s foot, and it makes a big problem. We’ve had a lot of struggle in our lives from running for our lives to being homeless to nearly starving. What happened today is relatively minor considering other things I’ve been through, which is why I’m more concerned about helping my mom forgive herself.

In addition, I’m really frustrated that I can no longer volunteer for that friend who is running the preschool. Right now, I just need to heal and get better. The foot doesn’t hurt too bad right now, but the third day is always the worst. That has been proven to me! Anyway, I’m frustrated that I can’t help her, but I still plan on saving enough money to build something so my mom and her can revive their Daycare. However, the plan is a little different now. I’m going to build it, let them have the Daycare, but once I’m able to purchase that home I’m looking at two states away, we’ll close down and move the Daycare to that state, so thankfully I won’t have to be away from my mom. It really bothers me when I’m away from her because of some of the things I mentioned above. Starving, running for our lives and being homeless are all things that you go through with a person and you never forget. We are more tightly-knit than any other family I know. We’re more of a unit or team than a family. We each compliment each others’ weaknesses and strengths, and given that I’ve been so sick in my life, had so many surgeries and faced death so many times, I know that life is short. I want to spend every moment I can with my family while they’re still here and I’m still here. If anything happens, I want to be there.

And thankfully, now I can. I’m so grateful that my mom is willing to move two states over for me and relocate the Daycare. She’s a wonderful mother and I love her so much. I just really feel for her because I know how horrible she feels about this whole ordeal. Though it hurts and I might end up having to have surgery or it could get a lot worse – it’s unknown at this moment whether it’ll be a good or bad recovery – I just keep trudging along, finding myself and finding meaning in my life. It’s a long road, and a tedious one. But when you don’t know who you are, sometimes the journey to find oneself is the most fun, relaxing, and invigorating journey a person can take. And I’m so grateful that I can take that journey here in my own home.

Daycare

Hello! First, I would like to apologize for not posting anything yesterday. I was volunteering for a friend to help her with this new job for a preschool she’s helping with and it was around midnight when we were done! Whew!

Anyway, I’ve been thinking a lot. My mom ran a Daycare for five years, and it was wonderful. At the time though, I was a teenager, and naturally I hated it. I didn’t like that the kids were encroaching on my territory. I even look back at those days and I’m ashamed as to how I acted around them and ashamed of the things I said about the Daycare. It was my mom’s dream job, but we had to do it out of our house, and it was very difficult. I just wanted to feel like I was living in a home, not a business. But we ended up having to shut down for various reasons. Now, I’m thinking about my future. There are so many things that I want to do in my life. I want to be an entertainer, I want (maybe) to be an author, and I was going to give myself two years to decide. But now I’m wondering if I should give myself longer than two years to decide.

There’s this home that I want in another state, and it’s pretty expensive, but I won’t give it up for anything. There’s a lot about the home and property that means a lot to me, although I’d rather not get into those reasons. Now, I’m starting to wonder if I should give up on that property and stay here where I am. Of course, that answer is no. I’m going to save up money and buy the property. It’s too special for me. The person who owned it before saved my life. The rest is hard to explain.

So, I’m thinking about making money with writing here on this blog, streaming on Twitch.tv, and maybe doing a YouTube channel, and selling my art, becoming a professional artist. I’m going to build a nice business building (not too big but big enough) for my mom to restart her Daycare with her friend that helped her start the older one. I definitely want to be part of it this time. There’s a lot of incentive. I want to learn how to take care of kids because I eventually want to go into foster care, and be a foster mom. I also think it would be nice to give older kids lessons in foreign languages.

Anyway, I’m straying from my main point. My point is that I’m conflicted; I want to go to that property in another state and live there, but I don’t want to be away from my mom. I know that sounds silly, but because of my health condition, I’ve lived a harsh life and she’s the only person that has always been there for me. I don’t want to be away from her because she’s sick right now and she needs my help. In addition, I don’t want to look back one day and realize that I lost the time I had left with my mom while I was chasing my dreams. I love my mom, and I don’t want to be away from her, because we are more closely connected than most mother/daughter pairs. I’m serious about that; I’ve been told that by countless people who have observed how my mom and I can speak without even opening our mouths. We can communicate with looks, and since we clung to each other for survival during my childhood, we know each other well and we have horrible memories together as well as miracles together. It’s different than most families.

So, I want to stay where I am, but I want to go away to another place. It’s conflicting. But the one thing I do know is this: I’m definitely going to stay where I am for a while, even if I end up buying the property, I won’t move in immediately. I want to be there for her Daycare, and I want to help with teaching the kids, helping with the children, and doing little summer programs as well as holiday programs. It’s something that is now a part of me, and I never would have gotten there without having had lived with the Daycare for five years when I was a teenager. It’s part of my life and it is integrated into who I am as a person. Despite my desire to be an entertainer (which I will always strive for), I also have it ingrained in me to look after children and be a foster mother. I want to help children that are hurting, and I’ve even considered being a teacher.

But with all of this looming over me, I feel like I’ve already made my decision: I’m going to move away, but I will visit often. I will be a foster mother, and I will work at the Daycare for a long time before I do. I hope to live a long life, so hopefully I’ll have time to do everything I want to do.

I’m sorry if this post seems really strange and pointless, but this is what I can come up with after hours and hours of lesson planning for three-year-olds! All I can do is know that I will received the opportunity to live out every dream I have. I truly know that. It’s just a part of who I am.

Starting Somewhere

You know, to be honest, I really don’t know what to write today. I have never been one who is short of words, so this is strange to me. It’s almost like I just don’t have anything to say, which is very odd. I’m usually the person who never stops talking, and is constantly thinking. So, maybe I’ll just write about my day.

I’ve been very tired all day, and I fell asleep for a few hours with a cat next to me (I have two). I love to livestream video games on Twitch.tv and I did that today. Wow, I had a boring day. But I think that sometimes we need these days to rejuvenate, to get our energies back and to replenish our reserves so we can keep going. I know that, for me, it can be very hard to keep going. I have such a severe heart condition, it can make it very difficult to want to get out of bed in the morning because I never feel good. That paired with my depression is really not a good combination.

I suppose that with this blog, I’m hoping to make some money on it. I’m twenty-three and still living with my mom. Not that it’s a bad thing, but I’d love independence and being able to live on my own. Finally I’m healthy enough that I can do it, but I need to be able to manage a somewhat stable income so that I can afford an apartment or even a home. I’ve got my eyes on one home, but that’s two states away. So, perhaps I’ll just stay where I am for right now.

With this blog, I’m not really sure what I want to do with it. I simply have this vague vision in my head of someday having a lot of people reading my words, and me doing book signings at bookstores if I ever become an author. It’s something that I’ve dreamt about for so long, it’s almost impossible to imagine my life without it. Even though it’s only been a few weeks since I turned twenty-three, I still am investigating whether I want to be an author and whether I want to do writing as a profession. I’m still sticking to my two-year mark, and I’m not going to make a decision until I turn twenty-five, but I’m pretty sure I already know what that decision will be. But then again, a lot changes after two years. People change, the world changes, perspectives and desires change. It’s something that nobody can predict with even the slightest degree of accuracy. Perhaps that’s why I tend to be so afraid of the future.

I’ve always been afraid to put my words out there, along with my thoughts. But I’ve recently learned that you obviously can’t please anyone, but I’ve also learned that the only person I should be looking to please is myself. I should be the one that’s happy. Considering that I almost died trying to do things for others and seeing myself as someone unworthy of being taken care of, I know now how important health and self-love is. Of course, I’ve never had a good self-esteem. But it’s getting better, and I’m realizing in my life the things I want to do and the things I don’t want to do. I don’t want to be one of those people that always looks at themselves and makes degrading comments. I’ve always been that person, but that doesn’t mean that I have to continue to be.

So, I suppose that as I’m becoming the person I want to be I will stop fearing or at least minimize the fear of putting my thoughts out there, and my words. We all have to start somewhere, right?

Millionaires and Billionaires

So, yesterday I watched a YouTube video about five traits that proved that you were going to be a millionaire someday. I related to all five. I think that’s awesome because I’ve always wanted to be a millionaire. I can have as many bottles of Gatorade as I want!

Anyway, I think that money is a tricky subject. It can be good and bad. I think that it can be bad when there are those that are willing to trample over others in order to get money, and it can be good when used correctly. I’ve struggled with poverty my entire life, and I know a lot of people around me have. However, my best friends growing up lived in very wealthy families, and it was very difficult for them (and still is) to understand why I couldn’t buy a soda at the Sea Store or a candy. I simply didn’t have any money, and any money I did have went to buying gifts for my brother’s birthday or to medical bills or the like. I preferred and still prefer to save money for those emergency times when I need them. But for those who have never faced poverty, it can be very difficult for them to understand how hard things are when you don’t have money. Sometimes when I see something that’s free, like a mangled book or a small broken bookshelf, I just get this rush of relief like a breath of fresh air. Not that I go out purposely looking for broken and free stuff, but it’s a breath of fresh air because money dominates our world in every country across the globe. It can be incredibly frustrating, and it’s a breath of fresh air as if I was suffocating before once I find something that I don’t have to pay a penny for, even if it’s in horrible condition.

I want to have a huge library sometime in my life because I just love to read. Haha, #readergoals. But I’m also a writer, and I have the crazy idea and dream that someday I may not only be a millionaire but a billionaire. I become afraid to tell people this because they laugh at me. They say things like ‘How could you possibly do that?’ or ‘Why don’t you dream of something a little more realistic?’ There’s a lot that goes into a dream, and when people find out that my dream (one of many) is to be a billionaire someday, they immediately think I’m stuck up and just want the latest Gucci bag or something. That is not the case. Not in the least. What I want is financial freedom, and the ability to give back to those around me. I want to be able to do random anonymous donations to everyone around me. If there’s a kid I know that wants to go to Comic Con, I would pay for the entire thing for that kid to go, simply because it’s something that I’ve always wanted to do but nobody would ever help me with it (not that I wanted help) and it’s not something I could afford. I needed to afford groceries, not Comic Con.

There’s a quote, and it’s one of my favorites: “Be the person that you needed when you were a child.” I want to be that person, and I’m hoping that I’m turning into that person more and more each day. I know that I am, and I’m grateful for that. So, for the things I wasn’t given growing up because of various circumstances, I want to give those things to others. Plus, I want the security to know I can always pay for hospital bills because they can often get up in the millions of dollars, simply because I have such a rare and severe health condition. That’s why I want to be a billionaire. I don’t care about Gucci bags. 

There’s always this preconceived notion about those that have money, assuming they’re stuck up and that they must have the latest designer clothes and that they could never understand the trivial problems of us ‘real people’. But I think that’s stupid and quite frankly ignorant on our part. Even if we are in poverty, who are we to say what someone with more wealth does or does not understand? I know plenty of families that are incredibly wealthy, although they aren’t millionaires, and they are the reason that me and my family aren’t homeless right now. They have helped us stay in a home with beds and food. That’s something to be grateful for and greatly admired.

But on the flip side, my mom was very wealthy before I was born. By the time I was old enough to understand, we had lost all of the wealth when my dad was arrested (long story on that one). She knows the line of poverty and she knows the line of wealth. In poverty, everyone looks down on you. In wealth, everyone expects you to give them money because you have more and they have less, despite the fact that you may have worked your butt off for that money and they are disregarding that. It’s an interesting – and sad – cycle.

I hope that someday when I do become a millionaire or billionaire that I can have more of an open mind, turn away from ignorance and be there for others that need while also being there for myself. Isn’t that all we can do, anyway?

Saruta Valentine

So, when I was twelve, I created a character. Her name was Saruta Valentine. Obviously, that is the name of my blog here. I decided a long time ago that with my music and writing that I would take that name to be my stage name. Saruta was and is everything I wished I was and everything I wanted to be. Beautiful, smart, strong, bold, etc. So, I thought that for today, I’d show you a little bit of my characters, and I’d write a small segment from her world. It’s probably not going to appear in any book about her (if I do end up finishing that novel I spoke about last post), but I just want to share her. She saved my life. I want her to save others’ as well.

 

There was nothing good about the outcome of it. Everything had gone wrong. How could it go so wrong? But then I have to remind myself that everything goes wrong in my life.

Dristan stands next to me, leaning against the wall of the medium-sized house, his arms folded and his soft eyes closed. His medium-length black hair falls into his face, swept to one side. “It’s not like we could have done anything different.” he reminds me, seemingly reading my thoughts. “People were killed. It’s that simple.”

Anger flares in my chest. I stalk over to his towering frame – much taller than my five-foot-seven – and ball up my fist, ready to punch him. “How dare you? Those people were killed because of me! Me! They were my responsibility. They had lives. They had families, and now you’re going to tell me that none of it matters?”

He shakes his head, exasperated. Finally, he opens his maroon-colored eyes. “No, I’m not telling you that it doesn’t matter. I’m telling you that you need to calm down. I’m just being realistic. There’s nothing more you can do.”

No, you’re being apathetic. I tell myself. I spin on my heels, not willing to give him any more of my words, and I walk out of the house and down the tattered streets. Everyone is cautious at the sight of me. The daughter of the man who is destroying the world; Lord Maurakuta. The renegade princess that ran from her home in Vampirva and now brings more death than she brings life.

When I ran away at eight years old, I only wanted to escape it all. I wanted to escape the killing and the threshold of violence. It seems like I was truly foolish to believe that I could ever do such a thing. It’s been so many years since that day. I’ve found my second family again, the family that I’m not related to but the people I see as family nonetheless. Drek, Dristan, Tryston, and Tia. They are my family, as well as other stragglers. We’re all outcasts, hated by the world and planet of Aria. Hated by the paradoxical nature that we’ve been forced to succumb to.

I stuff my hands in my jean pockets, walking down the streets, trying to ignore the whispers and stares. My red, orange, and yellow hair practically glow in the Suns’ light as if they were the very fire that killed families; my eyes the same color of their blood.

I sigh. But before I can do anything else, a strange blackened mist starts weaving along the ground. In tendrils of darkness, the Chaos is alive in the light of day. It whispers, and I can hear the voices of insanity that it brings with its presence. Soon enough, it rises from the ground and lunges at me. I dodge, throwing myself to the dirt and out of its way.

As I turn to sit up again, the Chaos begins to form a wall in front of me and around me. I notice in my peripheral vision that the people around me have either already fled or are currently fleeing.

Chaos, the most malevolent energy on the planet of Aria. With its whispers of insanity and its stinging touch, it can turn someone into a Chaogen with just a simple touch, infecting the person and soon turning them into something less than human. That is, if they don’t die from the pain first.

Examining the field around me, I realize that I’m surrounded. I pull my twin guns from the holsters that hug my lower back, and point them at the energy. The bullets may not do much, but the Chaos might retreat from their impact. Currently, it’s all I’ve got.

I sigh. Just another day….

 

Let me know what you think!

A Game of Life

It’s interesting how bullying affects a person. It can harm them, destroy them, or just make them laugh. I’m the first one. I would say that I’ve been a victim of cyber bullying in the last several months. I might have already spoken about this in my last post, but I honestly do not remember. A lot has happened since my last post. But in my eyes, I’m just grateful that I’m getting back to writing. I’m grateful that I’m getting back to doing what I love and trying to be who I am. It’s been no secret to those around me that I share just about everything about my life. Not because of sympathy (gosh, please don’t), but because I know I can inspire people. I’ve done it before, and I’ve always wanted to tell my story. But recently, I discovered something: I don’t really want to tell my story anymore.

It’s not something that sits well with me. I always knew, even from a young age, that I would speak about the things that I struggled with to everyone around me and that I would publish an autobiography on my life, and many more books. But a few days ago, I took a long, hard look at my life. I’ve been pursuing writing for eleven years, and it finally occurred to me…maybe I don’t want to be an author. Maybe I just want to write for myself.

Before jumping to conclusions, I finally did come to the realization that I do want to be an author, but later. I’ve decided to take two years off from writing the story/novel that I’ve been working on for eleven years now. That wasn’t a light decision, and it’s not easy to turn away from something that has kept me going for so long. It’s frustrating, but I knew that it was doing me more damage than it was doing good. Because of this, I needed to take a step back.

In March, I was rushed to the Emergency Department with my blood pressure 60’s over 30’s. That’s where they usually start chest compressions. This was before I even turned twenty-three, so I was still twenty-two at the time. I’ve since had my birthday. Anyway, I’ve always had my fair share of health problems and the like, but falling to such a low blood pressure was alarming, and very scary. I realized I wasn’t myself, and when they told me that it was because of the stress of my life, I knew exactly what it was: it was forcing myself out of my bubble and trying to make it as an author.

I had an acquaintance, and we met when we were twelve. I’ll just call her Arryn, as that is her stage name. I don’t want to call her out by her real name because I don’t think that’s fair. Anyway, Arryn was a writer, and when I met her I hated reading and I hated writing. She forced me to read a few books (she had a very dominant personality) and then convinced me to become a writer. Because I’d come from a background of never having been treated well except for by my mother, I thought this was normal behavior. It is not.

So, I started writing. And every single day she told me how much I sucked at it. I let this go on for six years until my mom refused to let her have anymore contact with me. This was after I’d been on suicide watch, in a treatment center, and was before I lost the rest of my friends from their disinterest in me. But my mom wouldn’t let it go on any longer, and now that this person is out of my life, I realize how much damage she did. I’m only twenty-three but I feel like an aged war veteran (no offense whatsoever to war veterans; I know you go through so much, and I am humbled to have you fight for my freedom).

It wasn’t until even later (a few days ago) that the sole reason that I would write was because this person would only accept me if I was a writer. She had stamped my self-esteem down so low that I felt like I was nothing, and then was manipulative enough to force me to try and gain her approval. Of course, pointless, but I was just a small kid. I didn’t know any better, and I thought that the way she treated me was just how the world was. So, I wrote. And wrote, and wrote, and wrote. And every day I was told how horrible I was at it. I was laughed at, she pointed her finger at me, told lies to her mom about how I’d ‘hurt’ her, and manipulated other people. I hated her for it, but at the same time, I wanted to feel like I was worth something.

So I kept writing.

Now, it’s many years later, and I haven’t spoken to her since around when I was eighteen. I kicked her out of my life, and now I only have my mom and brother, and my boyfriend. That’s it. I have become estranged from extended family as well. But I began to question why I wanted to be a writer, and whether I truly wanted to be a writer in the first place, and I finally realized that I only wrote because I was forced to.

At this point in my life, I have found some enjoyment in writing, and I know that I’m good at it. This is what years of therapy have done for me. And I’ve wondered what I truly want to do.

What would I like to do with my life? It always seemed like the whole plan was mapped out for me; be a writer, publish books, and make a living as an author. But that’s not what I want to do. Right now, I’m finding interest in other things. Video games, music, learning, other languages, and more. I’m finding that I have so many more facets than I thought I did; more than was imaginable at the time this all had taken place.

However, in the end, I did realize one thing: I do love to write, so long as it’s for me and for nobody else. So, I will be a writer, and in this jumbled up post where I don’t really know what I’m getting at, I’m here to say that after that self-discovery and hard look at who I am, I have decided to take two years off from pursuing being a published author. Not only that, but I’m taking those two years to find myself. I’m going to do what suits me, and what I find fun. Learning Japanese. Streaming myself playing video games live on Twitch.tv. Making mediocre art YouTube videos. Learning the guitar. All of those things that I’ve neglected in my effort to please.

So, if there’s anything that you, the reader, can take away from this, just know that if you don’t like what you’re doing, change it. Be what you want to be. Be who you want to be. Life is far too short to waste time away being what others have wanted us to be. And we are far too important to allow others to make our soul-searching decisions for us. That’s for us to decide. And I’d say that we make some pretty darn good decisions when we pursue our passions.

It’s a game; sometimes tedious, but worth the play.

The Swift Life

So, I’m a huge fan of Taylor Swift. Love me or hate me for it, but I’m a fan of her. I would even go so far as to call myself a super fan. But lately I’ve learned something: don’t trust anyone, not even the people who believe the same beliefs and loves as you. In the Taylor Swift fandom, we call ourselves Swifties. Well, recently Taylor released her own social media app and platform – as we all know – called The Swift Life. I, personally, have always kept my love of Taylor and her music to myself. However, I thought that with her own app filled entirely with her fans, it would be different. I thought people would be considerate, kind, and compassionate towards those of their own fandom.

Oh, how very wrong I was.

The Swift Life hasn’t been open globally for that long. I think it released just before Christmas. Even with that said, I have already deleted it from my iPod, deleted my account, and I have no intent of going back. Why? Because I don’t trust anyone, not even the people that share the very same or similar stories as me. Like I said, I thought people could be nice. But I happened to put an opinion out there…and I was slammed for it. I was pretty much put through the blender for my simple opinion. I was very hurt, because I couldn’t understand why people could be so mean, even if they shared the same views as me! It’s a cruel world out there, and I’m learning that more and more each day.

I have learned a lot from my days on social media. On Facebook, The Swift Life, Tumblr, YouTube, and Pinterest I have been bullied. Facebook was the most severe – and the most painful, considering that it came from people I know in real life. I learned at too young of an age to never trust anyone other than my immediate family members, and even trusting them was up for debate. It has been painful. But I don’t say this to sound like a victim, I’m simply sharing my experience.

Now, when someone comments on anything I post on the internet, my heart races and I panic. I immediately assume that I’m going to get hate. I immediately assume that whatever I’m going to read is going to feel like it has the power to tear me to shreds. But I’ve learned that if I don’t read those comments or messages that I will never know whether it was kind or not. Besides, I’m one of those people that has too much curiosity for my own good. I’m like a cat. I’ll probably be killed someday because of that natural curiosity I have.

But, back to the story.

Social media was invented to give us a way to do exactly that – be social through the media. We can now socialize through our phones, iPods, iPads, and even wristwatches more than we ever could before. But it has become a highly toxic place. This saddens me because when anyone tries to create something good in this world, it is promptly destroyed. That’s the cruel part of the world. I try with all of my heart to create and maintain good things to combat and rival the bad, but I’m often torn down for it by hate-filled, selfish people. That is something I may never understand. However, this is how I picture Internet haters: poised over their keyboard, desperately waiting for someone to make a post and then they unleash every foul word that they can think of on that person in order to tear that person down because they feel terrible about themselves to the point where they have picked the pathetic route of tearing others down in order to feel better. The thing is, though, you will never feel better by tearing another person down. I’ve recently watched an anime (I love anime) that I can’t name because it has a curse word in the title, but there is one phrase that graces every episode:

“Revenge is a double-edged sword.”

I couldn’t have said it better myself. Revenge is indeed a double-edged sword. Also, a two-headed snake. When  I went through a phase of teenage angst and anger, my mom told me one thing: stay as angry as you want for as long as you want, but remember, while you are chasing that snake to get revenge, its venom is inside of you, and you will be harmed just as much as the person or thing that you enact revenge upon. She told me the story of a group of children that were playing when a little girl was bitten by a venomous snake, and instead of taking her immediately to adults to tell them that she needed help, the other kids went to chase the snake down to kill it in order to teach it a lesson because they were angry. However, while they did, the snake’s venom spread in the little girl, and she ended up losing her leg, which was where the snake bit her. Had the other children gone straight to an adult and gotten the girl to a hospital, she wouldn’t have lost her leg. But instead, they wanted revenge. They were angry. They chased the snake, and because they did, they suffered the consequences of that double-edged sword.

I think that anger is a very natural and human emotion; as is the desire to help ourselves feel better when we have low self-esteem. It is simply instinct. But I pity these people. I truly do. I pity those that hate others and themselves to the point where they’re willing to go down an unforgiving path to pure hatred out of which they will never return. I have no sympathy for those who choose the path of hatred.

So, in my journey of trying to connect with the rest of the fandom of the woman that saved my life and convinced that living was indeed worth it, I discovered that everything sacred will be destroyed if exposed. So, here, I lay these words onto this blog post, where they will stay. And I have walked away from that fandom. Does that mean that I no longer love Taylor? No. Does that mean that I intend to enact revenge upon these people? No. I intend to meet Taylor when I break into the music industry, and I would love to be friends with her. It might sound a little silly and cliché, but I want to ask her if we could be best friends in real life. That would be something that would bring a lot of my biggest dreams to reality.

Because, in the end of things, the sad reality is this: Taylor, even though having no idea I exist, has treated me better than people I have known my entire life. And that is a downright shame. One that should never have to be realized.