Monday, September 29, 2014

Don't You Tell Me

I know my life. You know yours. 

We as a people are always studying and trying to find out how everything in this universe works. Whether it is the forces of nature or how the mind works, we are always trying to find out new information. 

And that is perfectly fine. This is what people do as their jobs or even as their passions. And then we read about them, if we are lucky enough to stumble upon their findings. We learn, we observe, we try to fit this information into our own lives. And that is perfectly fine.

But don't you tell me about my life and my thoughts and my feelings. 

There is only one expert on me.

I know myself better than anyone else in this world. Others may have known me for a long and have come to find a lot about me, but they will never know me like I do. I'm sure that people have felt similar feelings as I have, but I feel like there has to be differences between in the ways that people feel. I don't think that we can express every feeling that we have, so maybe we have feelings that other people will never in their lives come close to feeling. 

So how do you group me? How do you group me with all women? How do you group me with people I don't know?

Tonight, I was told that women are not able to accept that they don't know how to do something. This came up because I said I couldn't sing. I admitted I can't sing and suddenly, I am grouped with billions of other women. BILLIONS. If even five percent of women were to live up to what I was told tonight, there is no statistical evidence to support that women as a whole are not able to accept when they don't know how to do something. 

Then again, a man told me this. Not even a man that regularly interacts with women. Pretty much a reclusive man told me about women.

If he told me that women get their periods after puberty I wouldn't have cared. That's actually a fact and can be supported by statistical evidence.

Unlike my uterus, my thoughts cannot be explained by my status as a woman. Just like a penis does not define a man's thoughts. 

Not to be rude to all men, but those sporting some extra extremities have been known to think that they know what's best for women. 

Honestly, I don't even know what is essentially best for women. All I know is what's best for me. 

Why should anyone tell anyone else how to live their life? Or tell them how they live their life when they do not even know what's happening inside.

Our society stresses individualism over the community and that is fine. But if we are going to live this way, we need to stop telling people how they should be living their life. This includes grouping people and making asinine assumptions about how a certain person thinks or should think. 

The ongoing fight for women's equality is trumped by assumptions such as the one I said above. I would love to be treated as an equal to every male, but some men still think in primitive terms. Males have been dominant since the beginning of the human race. Or so men keep telling us. But one man has given the women's rights fight a fighting chance. That man is Charles Darwin. Women and men can evolve into equal creatures. Hopefully, the evolution of equality won't take millions of years.

Don't tell me about me and I won't tell you about you. 

This is what I saw on my pier tonight. What will you see on yours? 

Friday, May 16, 2014

I think that I wonder

I didn't watch a minute of Yojimbo. Too much reading involved for a movie.

I sat in class and looked at the screen but didn't see any Japanese guys fighting each other. I just sat there and watched the inner workings of my mind go through topic upon topic for two class periods. 

It's a skill. I am almost certain. Being able to focus in on your own thoughts so well that nothing around you could phase you is in fact a huge feat. I get a lot of serious thinking done, like serious beyond serious. It's so serious that no one would believe that those are my thoughts.

Sometimes I think about the world and how no matter how hard I try, I will never be able to save it. No matter what I do to motivate myself and others, it will always be the way it is as long as we are the people we are. The idea of a massive wave of change is not even possible in my mind because people are the worst. And I dwell on that for some time until I get into another topic.

Often, I think about school, but not the place I go now because there is little reason for me to continue to think of a place where I'm almost gone from. I think of my future school of UCI and whether or not I am going to like it or the people that go there. (There is a UCI page and it is turning me off of almost any person that has posted on it because they are not using the page to have questions answered as it was intended). I feel like the people are going to be weird, but on the other hand I feel like some of them could potentially become my friends. And then I also wonder if I am going to a find a place where I am going to fit in or am I going to be a loser commuter. And I dwell on that for some time until I get into another topic.

There are times when I think about things I shouldn't think about. I think about napkins that I had drawn cartoons on and where they are now. I wonder if I had kept swimming if I would be better friends with people. Sometimes I think about my favorite night at In-n-Out where I was crazy and tired and you were the only person there to me. Sometimes I wonder how weird we looked on that bus on the way home from that game with our bleach blond hair. I wonder if I had been there the whole time, where we would stand now. I wonder what would happen if I told you that you deserve happiness for the rest of your life. I wonder if you will read this because I don't know if I want you to or not. I wonder if I could think of any other way to say I wonder.

My mind is always running, which is probably why I am always so drained. I think more than I should, but I feel like that is alright because I am alright with that. I think that I wonder on my pier. What will you think that you wonder on your pier?

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

The Fire

There is a fire. It is slowly coming closer. I am moving nowhere. I am frozen.

There is a spark inside of me to do something, but I know that I cannot. I am stuck in my heart. No matter what I would do, I could not stop the fire from burning everything that I love. I cannot put out the fire with a bucket of water because the water is tainted. It is tainted with kerosene. If I were to pour it on the fire, it would get worse beyond belief and nothing would be the same. So I just sit there.

I sit there, waiting for the flames to lick my skin before I cannot take it anymore. Smoke is filling my lungs. It is hard to breathe, but I just sit there hoping that the fire will settle. But I know it won't settle. It is a flame that does not stop because it doesn't wish to stop.

The fire has started to burn my skin. I have blisters forming. They are fill with heartbreak as I could not save the fire from itself. The fire is supposed to burn, but where should the line be drawn? When it has torched everything that I care about? Everything that I know? Everything that used to put the fire out?

I am engulfed by the flames. The fire is not stopping. It does not care if it hurts me or anyone else. The fire is a monster at this point, burning and burning all things in its path. Nothing has a chance. Nothing has a chance to say a last word before it is ashes.

You want to understand why the flame keeps burning. You want to know how to control the flame, but you may never know. The flame is too wild to tame. The flame will never obey the commands of nature. It will burn until it burns itself out. The flame feeds itself and twists your words against you, making you the new kindling. There is no way to extinguish the flame. You know that because you have tried everything.

I am still sitting in the same spot. My body is charred and my heart is well done. No amount of burn cream will be able to repair my sores. How long can I sit here, waiting for the fire to be done burning me? How can I take everything that it is doing to my life? How am I able to breathe anymore with the toxicity of its smoke crowding my lungs?

I do not know.

The fire burns on.

The fire is not me. The fire is not you. The fire is a being that has no control over itself. The fire is fueled by the kindling that he provides. He can use what he will to eternalize his mania. He cannot see what he is burning through the smoke. He is so big that everything that used to matter to him is so small. He is still here.

And so am I.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Tied together with a lie

What if we lived in a world where we could not feel the way the wanted to feel? What if we couldn't think the way we wanted to think? What if we couldn't tell people what we wanted to tell them?

What if we live in that world?

Each time words spill from my mouth, they are filtered. They are filtered for profanity, racism, offensive comments, and for the truth. Most of the time, I speak in a circular lie because there is no way I can tell the whole truth without crossing lines of decency. There are times when I get to be filterless, but those times are few and far between.

I try my best to be considerate. Consideration is a tricky subject. This allows people to walk all over you in the process. When I am driving, I am very considerate (or at least I think I am) but I draw a line to where consideration becomes unsafe for myself and my passengers. Sometimes, this rolls over to my real life. I try to be courteous; I try to not step over lines; I try to keep the peace. Yet somehow, I am unable to achieve those things.

To keep a peace, tiptoeing is necessary. You have to be fully aware with what you are dealing with even when you are not dealing with it. One wrong word can release the missiles; the missiles being aimed at you and every move you have ever made. To avoid this, you lie. The lie to the other person does not hurt as much as the lie to yourself. The lie is to protect them. The lie to yourself acts against your instincts unless your instincts are to lie, which may be so if you are accustomed to lying. The biggest lie is being sorry.

"I'm sorry, but I'm not actually sorry because you are wrong. You hurt me and I don't want to be sorry. I just want to be mad and vent about you to my pillow. My pillow is the only one who supports me these days." This is a feeling that so many teens feel at one time or another. But we cannot say this. If we say this, nothing is going to get better between us and our friends. We lose a friend because we are too self-centered. And then we complain about not having any friends, but that was all because we told the truth. The truth is a heartbreaker. We cannot afford to break our friends hearts because we need them for when others break our hearts. So how can we win?

A battle is won with a surrender. No matter how many bombs have been cast onto innocent people, there is always someone willing to surrender. However, to surrender is to lose and to be consumed with blame. No matter what they do to repair relations, it was their fault. They are the ones that admitted that they were wrong. They bit their tongue. They swallowed their pride. The world in turns swallows them. All they wanted was for the war to end and peace to arise. Yes, they may have done some wrong things, but so did the other side. No war is one sided no matter how hard you fight for that point to be made.

To salvage a friendship worth saving, a sorry can start the healing process. But sorrys lose their meaning when they are over used. A coach of mine once said that he would never say sorry to me because he did not love me and knew that it does not have meaning without love. So each time you say sorry you should ask yourself if you love the person enough to use this precious word. Even if you aren't sorry, the love you have for the other person should be enough for you to be willing to use it.

Sometimes my filter is clogged and has to be let out. Those are where the heartbreaks happen, but usually I can mend them. Hopefully there will be a day where the truth won't hurt and everyone can be real without the fear of tripping a booby trap. Until that day, my filter will have no rest.

This is what I was allowed to see on my pier. What are you allowed to see on yours?

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Meaning without action

It's hard to listen when the words being flung at you have no meaning. People can be told to eat their vegetables, but they don't until they are facing serious health ailments. Life brings meanings to words and that is the only way we are expected to listen.

Laws are written. Some people follow them blindly because that is all they have ever known. When a law becomes enforced, either people start to oblige to it or they start to question it. Most people want to avoid getting punished so they will be a law abiding citizen, but others argue for the justification of certain laws if it in some way offends them or their way of life. The bottom line is that a law is only as effective as its enforcement.

Laws are not the only thing that lack a certain meaning until they are acted upon. Deaths are too. Most people have a feeling of certainty that they will live to see the next sunset, when there is no guarantee in that. But we continue to live that way because we have to keep our lives in order. There is no time for us to live our lives the way we want because the way we want to live requires us give up something else. When someone we know dies, we have a surge of life. We realize that life is precious and that we should not be wasting it.

This befuddles me. Why must someone die in order for us to value our time? Every day is a gift. That means that it was graced upon us and is a mystery until the day is through. Receiving a gift is a great feeling and we should never take it for granted. Why do we think that each day is a natural right when nature can take it from us at any time? It is just heart-wrenching that someone needs to pass in order to make us live our lives the way we want, at least for a few moments.

We should be leading a life we can be proud of at any time in our lives. That does not mean we should just quit our jobs so we can go backpacking through Europe with no money. This means that we should live for the now and appreciate what we have while we have it. If you are working in a job you do not particularly care for, you should remember that plenty of other people who do not have jobs would be more than willing to fill in your slot and take your salary. If you can make the positives in your job bright and shiny, it will be hard for you to notice the dull, lackluster negatives. Life is not measured in possessions, its measured in smiles and happiness.

Life is meaningful and death should not be the only thing that reminds you. Don't live a life that you don't want to live because that can only hurt yourself. Live for love, not for money. Live for laughs, not for fame. Live for family, not for gold. Live for yourself, not for anyone's approval. Life is precious and we should remember that every day. Make your days better by starting it off with a smile at the crack of dawn and finishing it with one too. Life is what you make it and you can make it anyway you please. Happiness is the key to locked doors. Go and open one today.

This is what I saw on my pier today. What will you see on yours?

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The AP side of things

Starting in elementary school, and even in preschool, students are split into groups based upon their learning abilities. Kids in each group grow up with the same people in their classes and create a kind of society within a society. The AP side of these societies are dismal if you shine the wrong light on them.

In the "AP Society," there is a social order that is in place, but no one ever talks about it. There are several divisions in our society. Of course, there are the slackers that barely make it through each of their classes. These people are necessary for others's successes because they make the elite look better. There is also a middle class of "average AP students" that get so-so grades, but we know are smart enough to be in these classes. And of course there is an elite power that rules with the power of extra credit, hundred-percents, and 5s on APs. This is the class that sets the ideal roles for AP students that pressures others to be like them. This society is in place and everyone knows, but no one talks about it.

The "AP Society" is pretty competitive. We live to outdo others and get into the best of colleges that the world (which means UCLA, USC, and Cal). No one boasts with a B or below. We save it for the As because those are the only grades that we want. Some of us are only in school to buy their As with their excessive studying rather than for the knowledge. Some of us are willing to go to teachers and kiss them where the sun don't shine so that they will give us a grade that we probably do not even deserve. But we don't care. It's like a businessman who works in scheming ways so he can get paid even more than he should. That is what we are expected to want and expected to "work" our way to.

AP students do a lot of work. We do homework that can be piled up in the most inopportune times of the year. We study at the latest of hours of the night. Most of our work is repetitive memorization of information. We only need to remember things for a few days and then we can forget it until AP tests come up. That is how we work because that is how our societal standards are set and we must comply.

When it comes to college decisions, we are expected to make it into the best schools according to lists that arbitrarily rank colleges on nonsensical standards. If we do not make it into our dream school, we feel like we failed our society. If we got into our dream school, we make sure to let everyone know so they can feel inferior. State schools are a laugh to us because we often think of ourselves as too good for them. Don't even mention community college. Community college is like an excommunication from the "AP Society." You are not allowed back in after your decision to slum it with the average Joes. To avoid this, you must go to an incredibly expensive or highly respected college just to keep in good face.

This society is messed up at times. Outsiders who are in the occasional AP are hardly thought as insiders by the society. If they are an AP test virgin, then they are ridiculed for their lack of experience. If these "outsiders" ask an obvious question, there is a sea of rolling eyes to swallow their self-esteem. The rules are set and if you do not know them, you better find out soon.

I think each one of us thinks that we are not a part of the society. We think we are better than these demoralizing ideals. I look at the elite and think I am better than them and at times can overthrow them with higher test scores and college admissions. Other times, I am replaced. Lately, I have felt as though I am not completely a part of this dystopia. I look at them and think of how they are going to afford the life they want to live. Not only are the schools that they long to attend are beyond the price tag that I am willing to pay, they also are going to be losing their elite status when they go to schools with the rest of the elites in the country. I don't know if I would want to be in that society. I fear it could be worse and lead to an unhappy experience.

I am looking at college in a different way than most of my peers. I look at it as a path that is going to take me to a place where I get to do what I want. And the only way I am going to do that is by looking at the content and not the grade. It's one thing to get a grade, but another to retain the things you need to know and apply them to your real life. I'm looking for life experiences, not for grades.

I'm a dissenter.

This is what I saw on my pier. What kind of societies will you see on yours?

DISCLAIMER: Most of this post is exaggerated and some of it is spot on. Take a look at the "AP Societies" in America and see if the society is prominent in your school. Just remember that the light you see something in paints the picture in a different color. I used a dark brush to connect this to 1984.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Serious to Sass

You would never guess that when I was in second grade my teacher said that I was serious! No joke, she actually said that! Today I would not say that I am as serious as I was then, but at times I can be pretty focused.

I think when I first heard my teacher say that I was upset. I did not realize that I was do serious. My teacher must have mistaken my love of school for seriousness, because really, I just loved going to school. I have journal entries that say that I love school to back me up on that. School was just so fun and I got into it. But apparently my getting into was construed as a sense of seriousness.

Since I developed a sense of seriousness towards school at a very young age, I remained self-motivated throughout my schooling. I usually try my best and it shows through my grades. Not bragging or anything, but I'm doing well in life at the moment. I think I can thank my younger self for loving school and being serious because it paid off, or at least for now.

I was not serious all the time when I was a child and I often was a little on the silly side. And now, I am pretty silly and sassy when I am not in class. On my water polo team, I became the Sass Master. I honestly did not know that every time that I spoke that I was being sassy. Sometimes I was trying to be serious and my coach would call me a sassafrass. At times, it actually frustrated me when no one would take me seriously when I was actually being serious. But my sassing did start at a frustrating time in my life. This year, the sass was toned down and a freshman came to be my Sassprentice. She learned a lot and even taught me some new ways to be sassy. It was a good year filled with sassing, while also being slightly serious.

In my psychology class, we are learning about human development. One thing that we discussed in class was whether our personality stays the same or it changes as we age. Some things do stay the same while others change, either intentionally or subconsciously. I think that I am still a serious person, but only when I need to be. In most classes, I am focused, except for economics where I zone out, draw pictures in lecture, and miss like ten days and still get an A. That is because I am self motivated to learn and do my best, even if I could care less about what I am learning about. I don't mind going to school everyday because it gives me something to be serious about. When I am outside of school, I can go crazy and sass all day. (My terms of crazy are going home and watching dozens of episodes of Friends and then getting my homework done).

I like who I am today. I'm passionate, creative, silly, and serious. I am at a time in my life where I am discovering myself and I am really enjoying where my heart takes me. If it were not for some serious little girl, I would not be where I am sitting right now.

On my pier, I saw a serious little girl turn into a sassy teenager. What will you see on your pier?

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Where the ink flows

Each day I go to school and I write. I write equations, I write answers, and I write questions. But when I leave my school realm, I forget that I have the ability to write.

I do my homework and stuff, but I never sit down and just write. Writing has such a power and I rarely use it unless I am being forced. With the increase of technology, the art of writing in myself is slowly dissipating. Pen and paper will soon be fractures of a memory that I will remember with my computer chip programmed brain of the future. 

Technically I am writing at this moment, but this is not the type of writing that I am talking about. I'm talking about the fluid thoughts coming from the fluid ink of a pen on a paper that is waiting for your thoughts to be shared with only those who are fortunate enough to obtain it. That is the writing that I love, that is the writing that is getting lost in time.

Two weeks ago, I did the unthinkable. I wrote thank you notes. But I did not just write a brief thank you, I wrote a heartfelt message to go along with my thanks. And I wrote several letters to the several people who had been kind enough to give me gifts on my birthday. I think they were some of my best work. That's because I took care with it. When I write for school, I write for the A or at least for the completion. There are very few cares given. And I find that to be alright because is life, you do things you don't care for in order to one day do the things that you actually care for. 

Back to my letters. There is something about writing a letter that makes you more pensive and thoughtful than when you write anything else. When you can write your thoughts with a nice pen that flows from letter to letter, you do not feel like you have to stop. You can write and write until you run out of room. There are no paragraphs required and no restrictions about topics. You can talk about friendship and shift into talking about how you hate to swim. A pen and a paper and a thought. That is all it takes to make something that is you. You may not be a good writer, but a pen and paper can lead to your freedom of self.

I wish that whenever we had to write something for class that it would never be graded, just reflected upon. The thoughts put out there are more important than the grammar, the punctuation, and the possible themes that you just so happened to convey. Writing should be appreciated and not analyzed beyond its meaning. So maybe I will write for the fun of it, maybe I won't. I will continue to value the feeling of writing from my heart when I get the chance to. And pens and paper will always be my favorite medium to do so.

This is what I saw on my pier. What will you see on yours?

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Sorry for the inconvenience

I haven't posted in a while and that is all of my fault. I have been short on time and ideas. But in the next few days, I hope to post a good one. So please stay tuned and see what I have to share :)

Monday, February 3, 2014

Time for a check up

What do you need?

That's the question that started my quest for innovation. It started off with a good idea, but turned into something so much better. 

For a project, our teacher told us to be innovative. So with the help of my friends, we came up with an idea that is going to help out water polo program. We are going to host the first Intro to water polo clinic at our school. We are inviting girls from middle schools in our area to give water polo a try. 

I didn't come up with the idea. My friend who is on my water polo team came up with it, but I like to take credit for it. 

So far, we haven't done all too much, but maybe we have. It depends on your definition of much. We had made a twitter, a Facebook page, and a website for our team all in one study session while our team was in San Diego for a tournament. Through these media outputs, we can broadcast our team and let people know about what we are doing. It's actually fun to run the social media sites and see who is following you. But I have felt that our team has gotten more exposure through these avenues.

We had a meeting last week with our athletic director to make sure that we can continue with our project and know what we must do to follow through with it. The only problem we ran into was with us going to talk to the middle schools about our clinic. As of right now, we are not able to go to the middle schools, however, our teacher is working on it even though secretly I don't want to go speak in front of middle school girls. 

The only details that need to be smoothed out are the date and the flyer for the clinic. Oh, and we must also plan what we are going to do in our allotted time with the girls. But that we still have time for. Hopefully people will want to come to our event and will want to continue with water polo in high school. Water polo is fun, they should all join after this event.

This was what I was forced to see on my pier today. What will you be forced to see on yours?

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

How to win without a scoreboard

In my opinion, people are too concerned about winning or succeeding to realize what had actually happened during their quest. This post is not about the journey to winning or succeeding and how you must enjoy the journey. No, no, no. This post is about how you can win even though the scoreboard has told you that your opponent had bested you.

The only time the scoreboard showed we were beating Newport :)

As an athlete, I understand that the object of sports is to win. Winning makes you look good. Winning makes people think of you. Winning makes you feel good. But what winning does not reflect your mistakes. Losing lets you remember what you and your teammates had done wrong. Some will see that as a downer, but I see that as a spot to improve on. Honestly, improvement is undervalued in this society, unless improvements lead to championships galore. On a skillfully disadvantaged team where only I, myself, have played more than 2 years of water polo, improvement is what drives us. Before each game, our coach tells us that she doesn't care what the scoreboard says, she just wants us to play our best and improve from the game before. And for the most part, we do. Some games we regress, but that is okay. The only way we can go is up from here, and we try our best to do so.

So how do you win a game without a score? It's with what you take away from the game. Whether you scored a great goal or had an amazing pass, you can take that and add it to your experience. The only way you can improve is by practicing and gaining experience. The scoreboard from tonight was not pretty, but you would never have guessed that we had gotten about ten kick-outs on the other team. (That is a good thing, just in case you do not follow water polo). That is an amazing feat considering they are all experienced players who know better than to make silly mistakes like they did. The most important thing that I take away from each game is the feel of support that I get from my team. Most of the time we lose our games, but I can count on my team to continue to be the awesome people they are. If you cannot walk out of a game loving everyone on your team, then you might as well have lost. In my heart, every game is a win even if the scoreboard does not show it.

This is what I saw on my pier tonight. I invite you to reflect on your pier about your wins.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Outskirts of success, target of love

Some days you feel like Frankenstein's monster. Unwanted. Unloved. Unfitting. On those days, you need someone to help you stand up and shake off the world's grime.

For me, I have a special group of girls that lift my spirits even when I am indeed sinking in woes. I have my water polo team, or what I would like to call, my family. It's a typical white girl athlete thing to say, but these girls are actually family to me. Let me expand and show you all the love that I am surrounded by.


My team is not as skilled as most of the other teams in Division I water polo. Southern California is where Olympic water polo players are bred. Like no joke, I have played against girls who are currently on the national team. (I made one of them look like a fool with a garbage goal that I managed to score ☺️). So basically, we are in a very competitive area. It makes it difficult to rebuild a team and keep spirits up when you are constantly losing. But the worst is when other teams are laughing at how horrible you are. Or when the announcer(not naming names) is literally  hashtagging out loud your opponents awesomeness and broadcasting that you and your team are practically laughing stocks. Honestly, those are the breaking moments, especially for me. 

What on earth could make me even continue playing when things like this happen? Well, my team is the only reason I still play. This years group of girls is the best team I have ever played with. We aren't very good and I have played with better teams, but this team is my all-time favorite. And I love them with all of my heart. 

We are the Frankenstein's monsters of Division I water polo. We lie on the outskirts of success, but right on the target for a perfect team. A perfect team does not have a perfect record; they have companionate love for one another and are all striving to improve in ways that they had never even thought possible. At a sports conference, I heard a quote that really struck home with me (a former UCLA softball player presented it to us). She said, "It's easy to play on a winning team, but to be a true athlete is to play on a losing team and accept that you played your absolute hardest and lost." My team is experienced in losing, but you will never see us able to walk properly after a game. We play our hardest the entire game through, and I am sure of it. We are a team of athletes according to this quote. Not many other teams are, nor are they as close as us.

Our team bond is probably the weirdest thing out there. Very rarely do we quarrel. We stick up for each other when needed and we support each other with love, compassion, and dedication. And we are the weirdest people around! I am proud to call these girls my teammates and my sisters. No matter what, I can count on them to help me in anyway that I need. I hope that for all of them, they see me as their crazy big sister. I hope I am giving them everything that they need to improve and thrive in this world. Because they are providing me with so much more than they know. They give me an outlet. They give me a safe place. They give me love. They give me the hiccups because they make me laugh hysterically. I love these girls and would do anything for them. 


I don't think very many athletes can say that about their teams. Within most teams, there is competition to be the best and I think that increases tensions and decreases closeness. On some teams, people are much too concerned with their own play that they forget that in order to be better, the rest of their team has to improve as well. And it is an easier task to improve a team when everyone is helping each other. Some people see their teams as temporary and don't desire to even become a part of their team, which I do not get. If you're gonna be a part of something, you must give it your all. Competition between teams might make teams too focused on the game and forget that they need to be a team, not just a group of athletes with a common goal. This is my opinion on other teams being not as great and close as mine and my opinion might not be valid and that's ok.

So my team is my family. I actually just led a team meeting where we discussed what our family means to us and how we can improve. I think it was a successful meeting, if I do say so myself. I believe our chat brought us even closer than we were before. 


My coach tells us before each game that what the scoreboard says doesn't matter, and that she only wants us to improve and implement what we have been working on. That's the only mind set we can have when we play nationally ranked teams each week. The only way I can come out of these games and feel good is by looking at my team and at how far they have come. Each one of them have improved immensely from the beginning of season and I couldn't be prouder. They can frustrate the hell out of me in a game, but I know they are doing their best and learning from their mistakes as I learn from mine own. I rarely see them look discouraged before, during, or after a game. They are all so positive and life affirming that they could make the sun shine in the dead of night. I can't believe how lucky I am to have a team that I can consider my family. I wish I was a better, more eloquent writer so that I could properly glorify them. They make me so happy and I am going to miss them so much next year.

My teammates are the wooden planks of my pier. They allow me to be who I am, and even better sometimes. They will always be with me as I sit on my pier. Who is with you when you sit on yours?


Monday, January 13, 2014

Keeping me up

I hate going to bed past 9:30. It is unnatural to me. But some nights, sleeping is a hard task to do before 1 AM. Kind of like tonight, or should I say this morning.

Victor Frankenstein was kept up for his quest to animate his monster. I am kept up by my thoughts. If only they were as productive as Victor's findings. But they must be significant if they are keeping me up.

I have to be up in 5 hours to go to morning practice. Tonight I will have fewer than five hours of sleep. I usually run on 9 hours or more of sleep a night which is a rare phenomenon for high school students. It's starting to become a dream that I wish to obtain. 

Maybe too much is changing. I'm deciding on where I am going to college next year and I constantly think about that. Also, I only have a few more weeks of water polo left and I'm thinking more and more about that. Finals are coming up in a week and let's be honest, I'm probably not ready for them. There is also a boy on my mind, but let me not bore you with that notion. Yet there must be something more that's affecting more than I realize...

But I cannot speak of it even if there was something else going on in my life that is causing me to stay up into the wee hours of the night. I am not allowed to, or rather I do not trust anyone enough to tell them. It's hard living with something you cannot share with those that you share most of your time with. 

Sometimes I just want to break down and leave my life for the beach or drive all the way to Hayward to see my sister. But I can't. I have to live my life on fewer hours of sleep and keep a strong face. People look up to me to lead them through the roughest of waters, literally. I'm probably making this sound worse than it is, but when you are awake at 12 in the morning you tend to be a little more dramatic than you need to be. 

I'm okay. I'm dealing. I'm just tired and want to sleep for a couple of weeks. That's not gonna happen though. I hope that with each passing day, things will get better. But recently, they do not seem to be doing so. Some days are better than others, there's no doubt. Then there are days when the gates of Hell are opened and a parade of demons are lighting up your mind at night provoking thoughts upon thoughts. Some of these thoughts scare you and make you sit up in bed. I just want to sleep without worries. It's a lot to ask, but I'm hoping I'm worthy of such a favor. 

If you're reading this, don't worry about me. All I am losing at this moment is sleep and I am grateful that is all. I could be losing so much more. This is what I saw on my pier on this morning, what will you see on yours?

Thursday, January 9, 2014

How a monster is unleashed

Victor Frankenstein was excited when he figured out how to animate a creature. But right after his monster was created, he was terrified and felt that what he did was a huge mistake.

Animation was what released the beast from his worst fears. But how did he figure out how to animate his creature? What turned a lifeless gump of body into a moving monster? No one knows how everything can drastically change in a moment.

There are many things I don't understand and will never understand. My ponderment for the day is how a person can turn into a monster in a matter of moments. When a person makes that change, their actions are irrational and hurtful. All we want is peace and all they want is war. Only time can calm the beast.

There are people who snap when the littlest things go wrong. To most people, they are considered dramatic and irrational. To the very few, they are understood to be troubled. When little things go wrong and you react in a way that makes you a monster, there might be something wrong with your way of thinking. In psychology, we learned that depressed people have a smaller scope on life and that even the smallest things can have the most detrimental affects on their days. This is not only a matter for depressed people, but also for those who are stressed or in an off mood. I remember I had a meltdown once because I had forgotten my Chapstick. I know that sounds ridiculous, but it happened. That morning I had an upsetting discussion with my coach which made me angry and I couldn't just slam lockers. I held in my frustration for a couple of minutes and then when I had realized I had forgotten my Chapstick, I broke. I slid down my locker in tears. But I needed that emotional release in order to feel better. But is that why others become a beast over insignificant ordeals?

I cannot answer this question. For me, crying is a better release than yelling, yet I continue to do both anyways. Sometimes I transform into this monster that you would not dare touch with a million foot pole in fear of creating a ferocious beast that will devour your soul with all of your hopes and dreams. It's a little dramatic, but I'm almost certain that everyone has those moments. 

So how do those moments happen? I've probably asked this question ten thousand times already, but I really don't know the answer. Monster moments can be terrible. The only way to stop them would be to first understand them. It is so difficult to understand someone who is in a monster state because they don't want to talk, they want to unleash their inner frustrations. 

Maybe the only way to help reduce the severity of monster moments is through preventative action. Just talking to a friend about frustrations could help or even seeking professional help if needed. Getting a person to talk is much easier than getting an upset monster to talk. If you know a monster, talk to them and ask them how they are. Crack a joke or watch a funny movie with them to lighten the mood. With studying this in English classes over the years, I know that the mood carries the scene. 

Monsters are mysterious and at times harmful. Let's tame the beasts inside us to prevent is from hurting the ones we love. A moment can change us, let's hope for the best. This is what I saw from my pier today, what will you see from yours?