I Miss My Friends… (PB) (FC)

This is going to be pathetic… so read at your own risk.

You may call me a whiner or a cry baby or ungrateful over-dramatic. Call me what you will but I’m just going to write what’s really on my heart right now. I might be pathetic, but this whole post is the truth. It may seem like a middle school kid of problem… and that’s exactly why I’m so confused.

I miss my friends. I’d like to say that I don’t know where they’ve been or why I miss them. I’d like to say that it’s just because we’re all so busy that there’s no time in the day. I’d like to say that things will be normal again and I know it.

Well I can’t really say any of those things, because they’re not true.

I know where they’ve been. They’ve been having so much fun talking to each other and making plans and going out together. They’ve been having fun doing all of these things with new friends or better friends. They’ve been super busy with other obligations as well. But what happened to me in that mix of fun?

I feel pathetic writing this. I feel so incredibly pathetic and kind of embarrassed. But I feel left out. Some people may be like “whhaaaattt that’s bull!” But it’s not really…

To whom it may concern –

I miss you. I wish you had time for our friendship and the fun times that we have together. I wish that between the craziness of life and the new and other friends that there could still be crazy Erin time. Crazy Erin is going crazy over here listening to her friends make plans during class as they turn her backs to her. I wish that it would cross your mind to include me, but I know that I can’t always be included. It’s just been a very long time since I have been involved and I’m not sure why.

I’m just worn down trying. Trying to initiate contact and forcing a connecting when you all seem reluctant. I feel like I beg to hang out with you, and you’ll typically still say no. It’s pathetic, like this blog post. You can read our text messages if you don’t believe me. This effort is wearing me very thin and I can’t keep on going pretending that you still care about my life or care hang out with me once in blue moon.

We used to spend all day together. We used to spend multiple days together. Now I only see you in class. We used to be spontaneous and go on adventures and do things that made me smile and grew our friendship. Now you’re too busy. We used to have inside jokes and sleepovers. Now I wonder if you remember any of them.

Maybe it’s a part of growing up. But maybe it’s not. Maybe you think you’re more mature than me, and therefore shouldn’t spend your time with me. But maybe you’re not. Maybe you don’t like one of my other friends, you know, the ones who pour effort into our relationship and treat our relationship with importance equivalent to a boyfriend. But maybe you need to learn that we can all be friends by grace. You’re being hurtful. I’ve heard you say things and act ways that I never thought I’d see, especially towards someone that you used to call a best friend.

I’m just a little offended that our friendship meant that little to so many of you. Did I do something wrong? Did I do something to upset you? Where did you go?

And to those of you who HAVE made the effort to be my friend: thank you. I am so incredibly grateful to know who I am important to. It’s nice to have people that talk to me because they care about my life as opposed to when they need something. It’s awesome to know that there are people who would treat a friendship with the same importance that they’d give to a boyfriend. You fight to stay in my life and I’ll always be fighting to stay in yours.

I love you all so dearly; new friends, old friends, bad friends, awesome friends. You’re all my friends and I will continue to pour love onto you because I do. There’s nothing that can stop that. I just wish that you’d realize that you’ve benched me.

LOVE ME.

Love, Erin

Okay I’ll stop being pathetic now.

If someone hangs out with me.

And no… Anna doesn’t count. She just kind of shows up. 😉

Songwriter at Heart (FC)(PB)

I’ve been slacking.

I kinda feel like I was always supposed to be a songwriter.

Not like a famous one like Taylor Swift or Jason Mraz, but simply one who write songs.

And no, not like orchestral pieces. But lyrical contemporary stuff.

Can you see it? I can see it.

I think I’m supposed to be a songwriter. It’s a good outlet for feelings (ew) and I love love love to make music with my guitar (although it is not where my talent lies) and love love love to sing.

I’ve tried to write songs in the past. They’re stupid and hilarious and embarrassing and I think my sisters made fun of me for them. (I may have made up the last one because the memory is fuzzy, but I think that’s because I repressed it. I do that with bad memories.) I think that I should do something along those lines. Guitar playing really helps to make me feel better. Kind of like a stress and emotional release all at once!

I’ve also always loved to write. I love to blog. I think songwriting is another thing that I’d enjoy writing. Again it’s not something that I think I’d be super talented at but my songwriting wouldn’t be about the quality of talent involved.

My songwriting would be more of a thing for me personally. Kind of like a journal with a tune. How fun! So songwriters who write to become famous, you know, good for them! That wouldn’t be my goal. In fact, I’d probably never let someone see them ever because that’s just how I am. I’m so awkward. So these songs would probably all be awkward as well… which is kind of a bummer.

So songwriting. Maybe. Maybe I will share my songs and become a super star and leave Hockinson forever and become rich and blah blah blah. Maybe. Or maybe I’ll sit at the saturday market in Seattle everyday playing my sad songs hoping that someone will pay for them.. you know? Maybe.

So I Uh Really Really Like to Rant (FC)(PB)

It’s good to vent, right? My momma told me that I should vent when I need to vent. So ranting is a good thing… right?

Eh. Probably not.

But that’s alright! Because I’ve seen a lack of ranting and venting to be a very self-depricating thing!! So to me, it’s vent or die.

Today’s rant is about expectant people who like to push their problems onto someone else, and take no credit for them what so ever. Being the president of NHS this year, I have experience a lot of flack from people, simply because I am following the NHS official bi-laws. I’m sure my fellow officers and adviser can attest to this as well. It’s not easy to deal with 70+ students complaining to me about how they’re stressed about different things revolving NHS, their main issue being having 10 “NHS sponsored” hours out of their 20 per semester. I know, it must be really hard to take the 10 NHS hours and fit them into the 3,192 hours of your life that 1 semester includes, but what exactly did you think you were signing up for?

Honestly, that’s what gets me. You signed up for this. That’s the only sentence running through my head when people get concerned. You signed up to be a part of our team and represent our nationally-accredited title; are there no standards? There are standards and that is one of them. I’m sorry, and if you have a problem with that, then maybe this program isn’t for you. (That last line was for you cheerleaders out there. 😉 ) It’s just frustrating that the 4 of us take time out of our lives to plan and attend these events to help our members get out there and do good in the community, and all that we hear back are complaints about how ridiculous the standards have gotten this year. Oh, you only signed up because you want to put it on your college apps? You want it to help you with something and give you leadership connections later on in life? Well, newsflash, it doesn’t do that much. Sure, it looks great to say you were a member and contributed, but how great will it look when you were also removed from the club for failure to complete our bare minimum requirements? NHS doesn’t help you make connections with leaders or give you any resources. The reason to sign up for NHS is to find an outlet for community service. We plan events for you to do, and you do them. That’s the point.

I’m also sorry that NHS is run differently than previous years, but it is run as it should be this year. It’s a big bummer that it’s a little more of a commitment than members originally thought, but it is what it is. If the problem is that they were “unaware” of this “change” in policy, it is not my fault. Or anyone’s fault. The only reason someone should be unaware of our events and updates on various social media and school-wide announcements is because they aren’t a member in NHS. There are a few students who I know do not have Facebook or twitter and cannot always make it to the meetings. While this makes it more difficult for them to obtain information, that is not my responsibility. There are members who have extenuating and valid circumstances that make attending meetings and events extremely difficult.  That’s fine! They seem to be figuring out how to get along. What about those members who ARE on Facebook AND Twitter? Why are you complaining to me? I’m sorry that you joined a club that you don’t really want to be a part of. You can be dismissed if you’d prefer.

So yeah. Not very happy with the lack of commitment from people when they signed up for it. I didn’t ask them to be in this club. They chose it. They’re great kids. They got in. If only they’d do their part. I don’t want to kick anyone out, because that’s awkward and they’re my friends. But would it kill ya to do the bare minimum of what’s required? 

Too Blessed to be Stressed (PB)

School. Activities. Cheer. Band. Home. Work. Family. Friends. Boyfriend. Christmas. New Years. Hygiene. (I know, that probably shouldn’t be on the list.) College. Money. Life. Future. Past. Now.

Hefty list to take in.

Life has been hectic and heavy lately. As it can be! I like to keep myself busy. Going going going and like to think that nothing can stop me. I look back at some things that I’ve accomplished and can’t really understand how I made it out alive. Junior year was one of those times. The week before winter break was one of those times. High school has kept me busier than ever.

The few weeks leading up to break, it seemed like our family was blessed with Murphy’s Law; everything that can go wrong, will go wrong. I couldn’t access my paycheck, my schoolwork was excruciating, I ruined my sister’s bumper, my brother got into a bad accident and totaled his car (and we’d just replaced the locks), I lost my retainer (an expensive replacement), our year-and-six-month-old refrigerator with a year warranty stopped working… the list goes on and on of the unfortunate events this month.

With those things, there were other stresses on my shoulders such as Poetry out Loud, my senior project, the challenge in band, various tests, and the fact that I had done NO Christmas shopping and it was December 20th. I was freakin’. I had a classic Erin feeling: THE WORLD IS SQUISHING ME! Probably one of the worst feelings… and I partially bring it upon myself.

This break has been a major relief to my emotional and physical health. I’m sleeping more than 5 hours a night (even though my stress-induced dreams are freaky) and I’m not constantly feeling like I’m falling short in some way because I’m so preoccupied with everything else. It’s been nice to just hang. To chill. To have some me time. To change up my hair. To go on dates with Brian and/or Anna. It’s been so nice.

During my time off from the stresses of school, there are still other stresses at home, but I am feeling better. I’m not crying and I’ve had some time to realize that I’m way too blessed to be stressed. The fact that I’m alive and physically able to do everything that I do is an incredible blessing. My brother being alive and unharmed after his accident is amazing. I’ve received wonderful gifts from friends and family who gave me thought and I’ve been able to give people gifts that I spent a long time deliberating or making in hopes that they’d like it. I’ve been able to look forward to this next year with some high hopes of where I’ll end up a year from now.

I guess it just took some time to think to realize that my life is so great! I’ve got so many people who care about me; family, friends, boyfriend, teachers, etc. So many. I’ve got a roof, a job, food. All great things! I can cheer. I can read. I can talk. I can think. I can make music. I can sing. All things that bring me joy. I’ve got too many blessings to be stressed about life. My blessings are constantly outweighing the stresses, even though I fail to recognize it most of the time. I hope everyone else is having a relaxing break as well, filled with yummy food and fun people. 🙂

Something That I Will Never Understand (FC) (SSR) (PB)

I know a lot of angry people. While I am irritable sometimes, it’s difficult to get me angry, or furious. Anger seems like such an odd emotion… if it can be considered an emotion. Looking at various people that are in my life that I love and care for, there are so many of them who become a different person when they’re angry; they forget who they are and their integrity is left in the dust. They’re filled with a hot rage that transforms them into an unrecognizable vicious monster who says and does things that don’t accurately represent who they are as a person. Their anger is visible, and physically apparent. It is and always will be impossible to understand why this happens when I am not a victim.

In the midst of a conversation with my dad yesterday, we talked about anger. I was upset about someone’s angry actions against me, so I was seeking answers as to how someone could be so vicious and hurtful with their words. He explained it simply, like it was something so obvious that everyone is aware of. To him, anger takes over him like a literal physical feeling. There’s nothing he can do to stop it, like an asthma attack. This was hard for me to digest, because when I get angry, I cry. I HATE that I cry… but I do. Sometimes I can be spiteful and rebuttal hurtful and sassy words, but most of the time, I simply cry, and can’t say anything. So I cry, but I don’t go into The Hulk rage I-want-to-smash-everything mode.

Anger can come out in everyone in different ways. Some people are sarcastic and straight up rude when they’re angry, others become physical and seek to smash something, anything. My mother and I cry, others become silent and withdrawn. I will never understand why some can become so mean when they’re angry, and likewise they’ll never understand why I cry. One’s reaction to something doesn’t always makes sense to everyone, but everyone can at least be aware of the fact that someone handles things differently than they do.

So I’ll never understand vicious violent anger. They’ll never understand why I burst into tears when I’m angry. I believe the reason that I do this is because I’m more frustrated, feeling stuck and hurt, not necessarily angry. But again… I’ll never understand the other side.

Work Ethic (FC) (PB)

“Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not: nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education alone will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.” – Calvin Coolidge

It has become common to rely on talent for success. Talent is innate and doesn’t require time to develop – it’s just there. Many people are naturally talented at something when they’re born and it’s possible to completely rely on that talent to take a person places on in life. The downside to this otherwise glorious plan is that this person will likely be unsuccessful in getting to the places they want to go and progressing a talent that makes them good into a skill that makes them great.

Working hard to get somewhere in life is the only way to achieve desired goals. Sometimes, there are steps in this process that are maybe not-so-desireable, but we must do them in order to achieve said goal. For example, let’s say that I would like to become an engineer. To do so, I’d be required to attend college and do well in lots of science and math classes. While I really desire to be an engineer, I do not desire to take Calculus. That class requires so much time and has so much homework, and let’s not forget that it is very difficult. To be an engineer, I must work through this class and do all that I can to do well in it. Passing this class aids in getting a degree which aids in getting an engineering job. It’s a minor piece in the puzzle, but crucial piece nonetheless.

I see this in high school all the time. We’re all taking classes that we think are stupid. When am I ever going to need chemistry if I do not plan on dealing with science at all in the future? But I need to take it so that I meet the requirements to graduate and the requirements to attend the university of my choice. Without this silly and seemingly unnecessary class, I wouldn’t graduate high school, which would severely hinder the plans that I have. This is the motivation I have to show up to school every day and work hard in all of classes; they’re all a vital piece in my process of reaching my goals.

I went through a phase my junior year where I stopped caring. I stopped showing up to school every day and I was sick of doing homework all of the time when there are other things I needed to be doing. Taking a part in the numerous extra curricula that I took part in last year really stretched me thin and it got to the point where I was so busy, I spent my free time thinking about the hefty to-do list I had ahead of me instead of actually doing anything. The constant stress of feeling like I was falling short in every attribute was overwhelming and I would take time away from school to just take a break from the stress. Little did I know that this was the opposite prescription for my stress; missing that much school caused me to miss an hour’s worth of studying for each class per day. I would spend my time of sleeping or relaxing with my mom. This habit caused me to fall behind in various classes and stress me out even more, especially the week before the end of the semester when I was worried about my grades.

I see this same pattern continuing in many of my friends. Many of us went through this phase last year. While I am coming out of it, I see many continuing to rely on their innate intelligence to pass tests and Hockinson’s ridiculous grading system to bring their grade up right before the semester ends. Hockinson makes is so incredibly easy to do nothing all semester, work hard for a week, and pass with the same grade as those who put forth effort all year long. Lily can testify to this, because she is a diligent student who would never fail to attend class, unless other circumstances prevented her and there was no way for her to be at school. She always did and still does her homework and tries to better herself in the academic field continuously. While she did all this, I showed up to pre-calculus an average of 3 times a week and never did my homework and managed to receive the same grade as her. I knew that I could do it, because I was blessed with a math brain from my father. I knew I could study very little and not go to class and get a good grade. Hockinson’s grading system made that easy for me, and all I cared about was the fact that my transcript had an “A” under pre-calculus.

Like I stated before, I see this among many of my peers. Because we can, we don’t do anything an expect an A, and when we do not receive that A, we get upset, regardless of the fact that we did absolutely nothing to deserve an A. There was a particular conversation I had with Michaela last year that reiterates this fact. We were both upset that we didn’t have an A in pre-calculus and were complaining to one another about it. Halfway through our conversation, we both realized that it’s funny we feel entitled to complain and be enraged about a poor grade in this class when we don’t even show up to it half of the time. We felt entitled to place that blame on anyone but ourselves, even though the poor grade was a result of our poor work ethic.

This year, I have taken a few things off of my plate and am doing so much better. I have only taken one personal day, and it was half of a day. I took the time off to read Frankenstein last tuesday, and missed AP Stats and Career Choices, but I was ahead of everyone by a day or two in both of those classes, so I knew it wouldn’t affect me much to skip. I’ve learned that hard work is the only way to truly achieve the grades that I want, I cannot continue to rely purely on my current knowledge. Showing up to class is such a crucial piece in passing a class. As simple as it sounds and as obvious as it seems, it’s a lesson I learned the hard way. I also learned that I needed to prioritize my time better. Which is more important, my paper that’s due tomorrow or tumbling practice? Watching a movie with my family every night or missing one night because I didn’t finish my math homework?

School NEEDS to be a priority if someone is planning to attended college. All of the little things like doing the math assignments, writing blog posts for english, and showing up for class prepared really add up to the grade in the class which adds up to your transcript which determines if you graduate and where you’ll attend college.  The little things in this case do matter, because they add up to the big things. Wondering why you did poorly on the latest quiz or why you had no idea how to write the last paper we wrote in class? Ask yourself these questions. Was I paying attention in class? Did I do the assigned homework? If both of those answers are yes, did you approach the teacher during focus time to ask for extra help on the assignment? If this answer is also yes, then it’s amazing that you’re trying so hard even though you aren’t receiving the desired results. If the answer to any of those questions is no, then the only one to blame for these things is yourself and you have no room to complain or blame others for this.

While Hockinson doesn’t do the best in teaching this, I hope that all of my friends learn this lesson before they go off to college and have the same mentality that they did in high school, because it’s very hard to BS everything in college. The only way to actually be successful is to work hard to get there, pure talent or intelligence will never be sufficient. Taking action and responsibility for everything is a humbling process, but necessary if success is in the future.

Pass The Flame From Wick To Wick (FC) (PB) (SSR)

Hey friends. I love you all more than you realize and more than I show sometimes. I pray that you can all remember the things that these photos speak to and hope that you can all be content with your life; family, friends, relationships, and all. Don’t hold onto things that aren’t bettering the world and yourself. DON’T SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF! (Read the book – buy it here) Seriously. Don’t stress if it’s not something that will matter a year from that moment. Don’t argue silly things or take things personally that aren’t meant personally. Don’t be too quick to get defensive. (But hey, we’re all guilty of these things! No one is perfect and gets it right all the time. But try to be aware of your actions 🙂 ) Instead, if you MUST stress, stress about real issues, like which schools you’re applying to and what you’d like to do for a career. Still don’t argue, but maybe be expressive of things that you truly believe in and stand for without shame and offense. Realize that someone may be trying to stretch you as a person and grow you in a positive way; their criticism isn’t something that you need to defend yourself against.

Upset that people seem mad at you? Upset with you? Maybe they’re mean to you? Just remember: treat people like you’d like to be treated. If they don’t respond to friendliness with friendliness, does that mean stop being friendly? No. Do what you can to show others what being a friend is all about. A kind word, hug, or smile can change a person – maybe for a moment and maybe for a lifetime. You have an impact… use it! Be the reason that someone will come to school. Be the friend that they go to when they’re broken. Be the person that you’d like to have in any situation… even if they wouldn’t do the same for you. Be the friend you’d like to have. BE KIND. Don’t joke around with someone’s insecurities or failures. Sarcasm is a fiery whip that stings because it always stems from somewhere. Even “just a joke” can be the reason that someone isn’t happy. That’s bullying. So again, you have an impact. Make it a positive one.

Remember that forgiveness isn’t for the other person. Forgiveness is a selfish act and the first step to sucking the bitterness out of your heart that has been injected from an interaction with someone else. If you have beef with someone, don’t let it build up in your gut before it festers into the biggest thing in your life. If someone is hurting you (physically, emotionally or spiritally) LET THEM KNOW. Use kind words and a non-accusing tone, but TELL THEM. They probably don’t even know that they’re hurting you, and if you don’t let them know, a big monster will grow inside of you and come out in the worst way with the worst possible timing. Don’t let that hurt monster become you. Tell them. If they decide that your hurt isn’t important to them… forgive them anyways. Maybe find someone new to hang out with. But forgive them and move on with your life. What someone’s opinion is of you really doesn’t matter – good or bad.

So back to where I started… Don’t sweat the small stuff. AND IT’S ALL SMALL STUFF! You guys, it’s SENIOR YEAR! As if you didn’t already know that. Let’s do what we can to be positive and enjoy these last bits of high school life that we have together. Don’t let bitterness, sadness, and hurt feelings overtake you; you’re stronger than that.

Sorry for a similar type post, I’ve just had a lot laid on my heart this week. Is it possible to attempt to create a world of love without hate? I know where it starts. It starts within us. We must make the choice for ourselves to be loving, and if everyone does the same, we will have peace. Be an example. Spread the love!

Here are the lyrics to a song that I sang with Katie Steiner and many of you in the second grade. Remember these child-like words and apply them. ❤

If I light just one candle and you light just one, too, and we pass the flame from wick to wick, from us to you and you..

And if we keep it going around the world, you’ll see the world is glowing with the light that came from you and me!

duet:

With one candle, just one candle. .. Yes, one candle burning bright. With one candle, just one candle, we can fill the world with light.

all:

If we light just one candle and pass the flame to you,

all our light would glow from place to place, ;and we would glow there, too.

And when we keep it going, the light will show the way to touch the people ’round the world by shining night and day!

all (opt. div):

With one candle, just one candle. Yes, one candle burning bright. With one candle, just one candle, we can fill the world with light.

all with duet:

With one candle, just one candle. Yes, one candle burning bright. With one candle, just one candle, we can fill the world with light.

solo:

With one candle, just one candle,

duet:

we can fill the world with light. With light.