Dear Reader,

I had kind of a revelation tonight. I can’t say no to people, and I think that might be my downfall. I would love to be the kind of person who can do anything. More than anything I would love to be that. But I’m not.

But that doesn’t stop me from trying.

Example: I’ve been dabbling with the idea of double-majoring for a few months now and I just recently finished setting it all up. Then I met with someone from the journalism department who was asking me why. Why would I possible want to be an English Education/Journalism double major with a minor in rhetoric and writing? And I told him that, ideally, it’d be awesome to be a high school English teacher who is also in charge of the newspaper. That’s when he signed my paper declaring the major and told me that’s exactly what he did.

“I’m going to be your adviser from now on,” he told me. “I look forward to seeing how this plays out.”

Fast forward four days later when I’m heavily considering taking 25 credit hours next semester (an ungodly amount for those of you who don’t know) and thinking maybe I should just drop this major before it gets the best of me. 

And by that I mean before it kills me.

But I can’t do that. I don’t want to let him down–this stranger that I just met. I don’t want anyone to think I can’t do it.

And don’t worry, there are far more reasons why I’m keeping my double major, but I’d be lying if I didn’t say that part of it was because I don’t want to disappoint him.

Example 2: This same week when I’m figuring out my schedule and realizing there’s no real way that I’ll be taking less than 20 credit hours next semester, my two student managers ask if they can sign me up for the SMART program. I ask what it is, they explain that it’s just them training me to become a student manager, and I agree. Why not? Sure it’s more hours, but it’s better pay. And won’t it look good on future resumes? Plus I love my managers, and Chloe has been telling me from the beginning that I am going to be the new her. I close three nights a week and she loves working with me because I’m reliable.

And I think that’s just it. The fact that people are now relying on me is kind of heavy. I volunteered to get AIESEC the few contacts that I have that are still forming because, after all, I’m just a freshman. I took on two stories for The Miami Student this week because that’s what they assigned me. I take notes for more than just me at extra credit lectures and guest speaker appearances.

But I love doing it all. I love when I visit my family and I find that I can talk for hours about all that I do. Yeah we just had that tennis tournament, and oh yeah that reading for Sigma Tau Delta is coming up, and no Tuesdays are knitting, Thursdays are when I drive to Hamilton to walk dogs for volunteer work.

I want to leave my freshman year with no regrets. I want to have done it all. But I don’t want a crappy GPA or no social life either. I just need to find balance. And as much as I hate to admit it, I think saying no may be just the thing I need to learn.



PS. I adore The Voice and this battle is absolute perfection. I’m in love with these two humans. Need Your Love – Jessie Pitts vs. Ryan Sill


College Lesson Learned The Hard Way #2

Dear Reader,

Everything in my life is a mess and everything is falling apart.

Dramatic, I know, but let me express my emotions how I want to so I can have the tiniest bit of clarity once it’s all over.

I am a messy person and I hate it. I would love to be clean and organized and punctual but, unfortunately, I am none of the above. First, let’s talk dorm room.

I am rooming with my best friend from high school who is, apparently, an A-type person. She keeps her things very clean and puts everything in their right spot immediately when she’s done using them. We’ve discovered that this is because she studies best in a clean environment. Which sucks for the both of us because I constantly live in a messy environment. So even though I’m not trying to, I’m making everything harder for her. Which is the very last thing I want because I feel that it adds tension to the room and, ultimately, I feel like an inconsiderate prick.

And there’s the whole sanitary issue. I’ll drop a bag of crackers and clean them up later. I’ll do my laundry only when it’s overflowing and I’ll dry it only when it starts to stink up the room. I’ll spill wax, forget about it, and then remember to clean it once it already hardens. But then I won’t know how to clean it so Jaden will clean it herself. Ultimately, I am just an unpleasant person to live with which is awful for my roommate and I and probably everyone else around us. And we’re not even getting into my outrageous sleeping habits right now.

Then there’s the planner: what every college student needs to survive these next four years. I bought one. I also bought a desk calendar and a wall calendar and I have my google calendar set up. But I don’t use any of these consistently. So I miss meetings and opportunities and sometimes I show up to class twenty minutes late because I thought it started at 2:30 instead of 1 and realized the fatal mistake during my, what should’ve been relaxing, lunch break.

And there’s my computer in general. Documents and files everywhere. Tons of folders marked “important” or “organize later,” that I never open again. And there’s all my websites that I go to: tumblr, pinterest, wordpress. Of course, these are, more or less, irrelevant in the grand scheme of things. But, still, I’m so inconsistent it drives me mad.

Then there’s all of these relationships. People who I sincerely want to remain in contact with. People I want to visit or go to concerts with or just talk to every once in a while. Friends, family members, even old staff I’ve been meaning to email for months now. I just never get around to it. And I never get around to texting back and I can’t really explain why. I just don’t know how I’m supposed to keep track of everyone that is important to me when I can’t even keep track of where I’m supposed to be and what I’m supposed to be doing on a daily basis.

And, finally, there’s all these projects. I guess wordpress could count. Decorating the dorm could also count. As could my sudoku-a-day calendar and my write-a-letter-to-your-future-self project. All of these projects end up unfinished. Or I return after abandoning them for a while. And then when I look back at everything–when I open the letters on my 18th birthday; when I read old Sincerely Sammy entries that promise “big things” for the future; when I walk into my ugly unfurnished dorm room, I get depressed because of the failure that is my life.

So I guess here’s the lesson: before you come to college, clean up your life. Life gets a lot crazier in college and if you’re already a hot mess to begin with, every passing day becomes more and more unpleasant.



PS. I’m digging this song: Fences – Arrows (feat. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis)

Everything is Worse at Night

Dear Reader,

I don’t know why, but when the sun comes down and you’re alone with nothing to do but think back and reflect on everything you’re doing, everything that’s happening, everything you’ve done–that’s when everything comes tumbling down.

At night, everything is such a big deal. You analyze everything that’s happened in your day, or some days you only analyze the bad, and that’s when the shit hits the fan. You start to think that everyone hates you or everyone is judging you or you just come to the conclusion that you’re wasting your time. And you think of how these days are going by so fast and you have so much to do! You think about it all at night, and it kind of freaks you out.

But then a miraculous event occurs–the sun comes up.

It happens everyday, folks. The sun rises and the world is filled with light and you walk outside onto the beautiful Earth and something’s different.

Nothing changes, really. You still have all the same problems. You still feel ugly, you’re still not talking to your sister, you’re still running out of time. But something happens. Anything. And it gives you hope.

Yesterday, specifically, someone reached out. It was a girl I had met at a program before classes started who was really cool, but we got caught up in welcome week and sort of lost contact. But we decided to meet up and just the idea that I could be making a new friend, a real connection, very soon, makes me happy.

And then I went onto social media. Twitter, Yik Yak, I don’t remember, but it was funny. I simply looked at my phone and experienced people being their usual hysterical, ridiculous selves.

That’s all you have to do. Find the little things in life–the things that make a smile creep across your face so stealthily you couldn’t stop it if you tried. Find at least one thing every day and hold onto it until another something wonderful happens.

Now, I’m fortunate enough to say that  I’ve never had a suicidal thought in my life and I actually started writing this post because lately I’ve been really down in the dumps at night, and that’s when I write. And I write a lot. So I thought I’d write this entry because I don’t want any of my readers or friends to get depressed or concerned reading my posts and I don’t want my blog to be some negative whirlpool. So I wanted to share this little insight. Advice, if you will.

But the truth it, today is Suicide Awareness Day. Too many young people (and too many people in general) are feeling so hopeless and unloved that they’re ending their own lives. I can’t fathom how people can be pushed to this limit, or how their own peers and “friends” and family can be the ones to push them, but it’s a problem. As human beings, we need to be there for each other and just be nice.

Oh my goodness, just be nice.

I promise you it’s not that hard to smile at a stranger or compliment someone every once in a while. And I promise you that everything is worse at night. So just wait until you wake up and start a new day.



PS. Here’s one of my favorite songs ever (the original and a lovable cover): Here Comes the Sun

The Beatles

Colbie Caillat

College Lesson Learned The Hard Way #1

Dear Reader, 

I learned something today, and it kind of sucks. 

You’re going to have bad days in college and you’re going to feel like crying. You’re going to feel like you’re not good enough or you’re not pretty enough or maybe you just don’t belong here. You’re going to feel all of this and it’s going to suck. 

But here’s the thing–you can’t do anything about it because you’re never alone. You can’t cry in your room because you have a roommate. You can’t work out at the rec center because you think you’re fat or ugly or whatever and people at the rec already look perfect. And you can’t work out in the room because, again, you have a roommate. Who sends pictures of you to your friends because it’s “funny” or whatever. And you can’t tell them that you’re not in the mood today. That today none of that’s funny, it’s all just annoying and hurtful. Because you see this pictures of your ugly self and you hate yourself a little more. But you can’t say that because you’re “overreacting.” 

And you just always feel like you’re being judged. Because you maybe you go to a school like Miami University. A school with a reputation of being pretty and smart. But right now you feel neither. You feel inadequate by comparison. Because one time your brother said you had cankles and you never noticed that before but it’s true, so now you see it every day. And another time two girls in your school with perfect bodies said, “If I ever have cellulite put me down.” And you didn’t know before that not everybody has that, but now you see that that’s true too. And every day you see these girls with flat stomachs and normal-sized calves and you don’t compare. You can’t compare. And in every picture you see of yourself it becomes more and more obvious. And in every picture you see it hurts a little more.

And it gets to the point where you hate pictures. First it’s full-body pictures because you aren’t tanned and you aren’t toned. But then you realize you don’t even have a pretty face. You have yellow teeth with a gap and a chip in the front one and you have ugly hair and weird freckles and are those moles? And the good days are the days where you give yourself a pep talk and you truly believe you look average. Or, better yet, you drink some alcohol and then you think you’re pretty. And maybe everybody else thinks you’re pretty, too, because they’re intoxicated and don’t know any better. But then you’re sober and you’re back in front of the mirror, hating yourself. 

But the worst part is that you can’t tell anyone. They’re not going to agree with you! They’re just going to try and reassure you that you’re beautiful but that can’t change your mind. It’s never changed your mind before so why would it change it now? 

I wish it was that easy. 

I could get a million comments on this saying, “don’t say that, you’re beautiful!” but none of it would matter. Not a single one. Maybe it would make me feel better for a second, but one look in the mirror would change everything. Because what I see is ugly in every sense of the word. And what I see, I believe everyone else sees too. And the only thing that matters is what I see, and what I believe others see. And I guess I just don’t know how to change that. 

The only way to change my view of myself is to change my exterior. That’s what I’ve realized, but that’s a lot harder than it sounds. Because you don’t go to the rec because it’s hard. And you say yes to the pancakes with chocolate chips because it tastes better than yogurt and fruit. But you would give everything to change the decisions you made today. And the day before that. And the day before that. 

But we can only move forward. And I’m stuck with the body I have because of these decisions I’ve made. But because that doesn’t change overnight, I’m stuck feeling like this for who knows how long. But how do you live in a body you hate? 

So you talk to your sister. Someone you think would understand. But you’re too hurt to be kind and end up hurting her feelings and then she says some things and then some things end up on twitter and then you start crying as subtly as you can in your room so your roommate doesn’t see. 

So I guess the lesson I learned is this: Self-confidence is not going to come overnight. And it’s never going to come without hard work. It’s going to get a lot harder in college and you’re going to feel a lot worse a lot more often. And I guess the lesson is that you’ve got to find some way to either deal with it or change. But right now it’s hard to do either. 

And the other lesson I learned is it’s best to cry in the bathroom because no one will hear you over the flush of the toilet. 



PS. Here’s a fitting throwback for you guys: Don’t Let Me Get Me – P!nk

I Don’t Cry In Movies Anymore

Dear Reader,

I’m not sure if I mentioned this before but I don’t cry in movies anymore. And I’ve been trying to figure out what this means. 

I used to cry during anything remotely touching. I bawled in every disney movie from Finding Nemo to Tangled. I cried tears of happiness whenever Jim & Pam’s story would play out. I even teared up during America’s Got Talent auditions because there was a male gymnast or something that followed his dream even though his parents didn’t approve because it was too feminine. But all of a sudden, I’ve stopped. 

I recently watched The Fault in our Stars and Rent. Story lines that are heartbreaking and tragic and tear-jerking. But not a single tear of mine was shed. 

So what’s wrong with me? Am I becoming heartless? Or am I growing up? I’d like to think not!

The other day in my journalism class we interviewed a soldier who is in the 82nd Airborne. These soldiers are always combat ready and this particular medic will drop into enemy territory to help our wounded soldiers survive and come back home. This man’s grandmother was in the room and broke down, crying, when asked how she feels about this. All she could muster was how incredibly proud she is of him and how he’s such a wonderful guy. When the pair left, our teacher explained why she had earlier stopped the soldier from describing his duty in more detail. “I couldn’t do that to his poor grandmother,” she explained. “I knew what was going through her mind: the fact that she might outlive her grandson.” 

And there I sat in class, tearing up because of how harsh reality can be sometimes. 

So maybe that’s it. Maybe I’m just having trouble believing in fiction. Sure, a love story between two doomed cancer patients is tragic, but how often does that happen? I’ve surely never seen it. I guess it’s just hard for me to relate unless it’s happening right in front of me. 

Sorry for this probably pointless post. Just another example of how the sole purpose of my writing is for my own clarity. Sorry if that’s not very entertaining. Thanks for sticking with me nonetheless. 



Entirely Unhelpful

Dear Reader, 

I love it when friends come to me with problems. Whether they come seeking advice or just wanting a listening ear, it’s a good thing to feel needed. And appreciated. What I hate is that my friends have these problems. 

Sure, there are the simple cases when someone’s freaking out because they failed their math test or they missed curfew and they just need to be reminded of what matters–a little reality-check and things calm down. Or when my sister comes home from dance, talking a mile a minute about what dramatic episodes happened today. I’ll chime in every once in a while with a helpful tip or a comment to supply as some sort of comedic relief, but the reason she comes to me is because she just wants to rant. And she wants someone to listen. 

I can handle those situations. 

But how do I tell a friend that it’s going to be alright when they’re not allowed to pick their own college, choose their own major, or even live on campus? When they break down on decision day because, while all of the other seniors got to make their own decisions, regarding their own futures, my friend didn’t get to make theirs. 

Or when a friend comes to me, stressed and distraught because both of their grandparents are dying. I can’t say everything’s going to be okay because, eventually, they’ll both die. But I can’t say that either because that is extremely insensitive and unnecessary to mention. I can’t tell them that I’ve been there, because I haven’t, and I can’t say that I know what they’re dealing with, because I don’t. So is it all I can do to say, “aww that’s sucks,” in as many different variations possible? 

Or how about when a friend comes to me with money problems? Stressed out of their minds because college is expensive! And is it worth it? To be in debt years after graduating with a degree that in no way guarantees them a job after the thousands of dollars are spent. How can I answer this question when the answer is so different for me? 

How do I help my friends? 

I try so hard to be a good friend to these people who don’t deserve these hardships, but there’s got to be more that I can say! More that I can do to help them deal with these problems. 

And maybe I’m just unprepared. But how awful is it for me to sulk because I am privileged and blessed with so many wonderful things in my life? My college years are practically paid for and I get the freedom to study what I want. My grandparents are (touch wood) alive and well and I did nothing to deserve this. Just like these good people did nothing to deserve these unfortunate circumstances. 

And maybe I’m not given these burdens because I can’t handle it. After all, I get stressed enough worried about petty problems involving over-scheduling and battling laziness. I still despise having to take ADD medicine every morning, while there are people out there dealing with much worse illnesses. 

In no way am I trying to sound like I want these awful things to happen to me–I am truly thankful for everything I have and everything that I don’t have to worry about. But when I talk to these friends, how do I empathize with real life struggles while I, myself, hardly know the half of it.

I don’t know what the point of this entry is. It just all seems wrong to me. Even me, sitting here in my room, writing about how I’m sad that I can’t help my friends. Meanwhile, my friends are sitting in their own rooms, being sad for much better reasons.

I just want to help them. I want to say the right things to make them feel better and, if they fall apart, I want to be able to pick up their pieces. Sure, I want to empathize and lead by example and be strong enough for all of us, but I shouldn’t spend my nights practically wishing things had been harder.

Because I think we do that sometimes–wish things were a bit harder.

It’s like that line from “Birds” by Chef’Special: “I wish I was from a broken home to explain the fact that I’m cold and alone. But my family is golden so it’s probably just my own fault again.” 

I think we’re all a bit messed up, and we’re looking for any validation as to why. And those of us who can’t find any can’t help but wonder where we went wrong. 

And then I think the media tends to glorify these stories. Stories of struggle and triumph and strength. Jim Carrey and Oprah Winfrey and all these fictional stories of girls and boys who are depressed or ill or scarred. But they become these great characters, and they’re given happy endings. 

Well, I think I’ve strayed far enough away from the point I was trying to make. And it’s too late and I’m too lazy to do anything about it now. So I’ll just reiterate what I’ve been trying to say. 

I’m sorry that bad things happen to good people and I’m sorry that I can’t always help in the way I’m supposed to. But I’ll keep trying. 



Spreading Myself Too Thin

Dear Reader,

I’m a bit stressed.

I am moving into my dorm at Miami University in exactly a week. And yeah it’s stressing to say goodbye to everyone and prepare for a completely different life three hours from home, but that’s not exactly what’s bothering me.

I want to be an English teacher because, in my eyes, that’s the best job there is. I love reading books and studying poetry and writing and teaching and all of it. And I want to make a difference. More importantly, I believe I can. This year I got to be a student teacher in some classrooms around the area and it only verified that this is what I’m meant to do. And I’m passionate enough to be good at it! I could honestly write an entire post about why this is my dream job, but instead I’ll cut to the chase.

It’s a great job, yes, but do I want to get straight out of college into a career so routine-oriented?

I’d work from August to May, and then use my summers to prepare for the next year. Sure, it’s great when you have a family, I would imagine. And I want to teach in a school much like my high school–a nice suburb with a good community and intelligent, inspiring kids (even though you can find those anywhere).

But I don’t want to spend my whole life in the same town, doing the same things, just looking for little pleasures in my life.

I want to travel the world. Return to France and English, and go on adventures in Thailand and Finland and Germany and Luxembourg! I want to live in New York City. I visited when I was a freshman and it’s been on my mind ever since.

But I don’t want to teach there. And even if I did, I can’t imagine that it’d be easy to find a job in the city.

So I’m going to this school for the next four years of my life and I’m going to milk it for everything it’s worth. I’m going to learn everything I possibly can and travel with any group that will take me along. I’m going to leave in 2018 as the most educated, prepared, worldly, leader that I can be.

Which has led to my decision of adding a journalism major.

So far in Miami I will be taking five classes that meet two days a week, practicing with the club tennis team four nights a week, working three nights a week, and auditioning for the orchestra that meets every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

It’s all part of my plan. I have two English classes that I’m very excited about and will, therefore, be excited to study. One is just reading and studying works by major American authors and the other is advanced composition, which I’m assuming will help me when writing my own novels. I then have an Educational psychology class that seems interesting and a journalism course that looks very promising. Then I have a random science class that I may need help with but am nonetheless ready to take on. (Plus it’s required for my graduation)

Then tennis is going to help me stay in shape, meet new people, have fun, and help me if I ultimately decide to coach (I’ve definitely been considering it). And I may not even make the orchestra–actually, I probably won’t. But if by some miracle I do it’ll be great to keep up with the cello and help me prepare for if I become a private cello teacher in the future.

And the job is to help me pay for the winter term if I decide to stay or study abroad (fingers crossed for New York City) or simply give me some money to save for the future or pay back my father for everything he’s done for me. And might I add that the hours are very reasonable.

So I’m planning all of this as the excitement grows inside of me to the point where I burst and spill the beans to anyone who will listen. And then this is the response I get:

“Have fun failing out.”

All I want is for one person to be supportive. Supportive without the condescending comments about time-management and heavy workloads. Because maybe I am spreading myself too thin, but let me make that mistake for myself. I’d rather try it all and be forced to quit a few than not try enough and live with regrets.

I understand that this is going to be hard–probably harder than expected–but this is my life! This is all preparation for the life that I will choose after college.

Maybe I’ll be a suburban teacher, maybe I’ll be a tennis coach, maybe I’ll be a journalist, maybe I’ll be an author, maybe I’ll be a cello teacher, maybe I’ll be all of the above! But this is just me trying to prepare for anything and everything and this is me pursuing my passions and following my dreams.

So just stop trying to stop me.



A Late-Night Epiphany


Dear Reader,

To live a creative life we must lose our fear of being wrong.

As much as I hate to admit it, I have a lot of fears. And these fears hold me back every day–more than I’ve let myself realize, actually.

I constantly fear that I won’t be good enough. Or that I’ll fail to meet expectations. Anyone who’s met me can vouch for me when I say that, typically, people don’t expect much from me–and that’s how I like it! Or how I liked it at least.

Every day I would come to school in t-shirts or sweats or yoga pants or athletic wear of some kind and, most every day, I would show up with at least one homework assignment incomplete or one assessment unprepared for. And, yes, my personal issues of laziness and low self-confidence had something to do with those habits, but a much bigger driving force was the expectation I was creating for myself.

In some instances, life is INCREDIBLY easy when people don’t expect much from you. All I ever had to do to win compliments or momentarily impress people was show up in a cute outfit or complete an assignment fully and on time.

And I would think “hey, this rep is the best thing I’ve ever done for myself.”

But then it got hard.

Because do you know how much it sucks to be unreliable? To be the one weak link in the group and be aware that everyone else is just preparing to pick up your slack? Or for someone to come to school looking like they just rolled out of bed and for them to come up to you and say “I decided I’d dress like you today. We’re so ratchet!”

Do you know how much it sucks to not be able to take an advanced class in your favorite and best subject because you didn’t complete enough homework assignments or read enough of the required reading your junior year? How much it sucks to not have enough potential anymore?

Well all of that suckiness happened to me because I created this reputation for myself because I was scared. I was scared of the possible stress and failure that comes with high expectations, so I forced those around me, my teachers, my friends, my family, to expect automatic disappointment. And I didn’t realize it until it was too late.

And I’ve already decided that college is going to be different. No one is going to know anything about me so I’m going to prove myself immediately and then just keep raising my expectations higher and higher as I go.

I’m done selling myself short.

I’m done being afraid.

And writing these novels (for those of you who don’t know, I currently have two in the works) terrifies me. Because I’ve been writing them, thinking of how the publisher or how the audience will read them. Will they think the plots are boring? Confusing? Cliched? Does it look like I’m trying too hard? Is none of this working?

These questions run through my mind every day, but I’m now going to make a conscious effort to shut them out.

These stories are the most creative outlet I have right now and, if I do say so myself, I think they’re good. Really good. And once they’re done I’ll share them with the world.

I’m not afraid of rejection anymore–of being wrong. Because I am confident that I am right.


Being The Protagonist

Dear Reader,

This all seems familiar. I’m up much later than I should be and I have to wake up much earlier than I’d like to tomorrow. And I’m feeling the urge to write. To bring some clarity into my life. To ramble on until I find my point.

Yes, this same situation happened on one of the first days of my summer, June 16, when I wrote my first blogpost about “my story.” And now, on one of the last days of my summer, I am experiencing an epiphany.

I mentioned in said post that I see all people as characters. And because it is in my human nature to be narcissistic and self-centered, I see myself as the main character of a story. My story.

But oh my WORD would that be an awful story. I’ve had, what, maybe two love interests in my seventeen years of life. I’ve spent countless Friday nights skipping football games and social events to stay home and kill my weekend either on the internet or simply daydreaming. And I’ve had an embarrassing number of awkward encounters and situations that I cringe when I look back.

And I looked at all of this–all of these reasons why my story sucks–and I thought, why? And then I realized the common problematic factor is me. Maybe it’s because I’m too young to have truly lived, but I think I’ve mostly just missed opportunities to grow. To learn and to live.

So my plan was to cram it all in this summer… but that didn’t happen.

The main reason why is because I completely over scheduled myself with two jobs and I underestimated how much time and effort it takes to prepare for college. The other reason, though, is something that was obvious but I chose to ignore.

It is hard to change. Not impossible (I haven’t given up yet), but really damn hard.

I had this idea at the beginning of summer of the “character” that I wanted to turn into. I wanted to be intelligent and healthy and beautiful and funny and charming and maybe a bit introverted and shy, but altogether a good time and a good friend. The true list was much longer, but those are some of the main points.

So I was going to become this character–this ideal person that I’ve always wanted to be–and then my story would start. I would attract all the right supporting characters (don’t worry, I wasn’t planning on ditching my current friends and family or anything, I’m just looking to expand as I move onto college) and go on these novel-worthy adventures. Or, at the very least, live adventures that are worth telling my children some day.

But here’s what I forgot: the best characters are dynamic. They change and grow as the story reveals itself. Look at A Tale of Two Cities! This is a favorite book of mine so I’ll skip any major spoilers, but Sydney Carton is basically a loser turned hero. But it’s because of the plot, the adventure, the characters, that this happened.

So I may not have all of the qualities that I want, and I’m not going to stop working on my own to get smarter and healthier and all that, but I’m going to stop letting the qualities that I don’t possess stop me from doing, well, anything. Because maybe stepping out of my comfort zone every once in a while and partaking in adventures that I would have once declined for various reasons, maybe that will help. Maybe those experiences will make me funnier or more interesting.

At the very least, I’ll have more stories to tell.

In other news, I am moving into my dorm in exactly two weeks and plan to keep up with “Sincerely Sammy” by writing once a week. With five classes, club tennis, a job, and the desire to have a social life and live these adventures that I have talked so fondly about, I may not have a ton of spare time. But this is something I really like doing and I feel bad for neglecting it.

Thank you if you’ve made it this far–I know it’s been a while since I’ve rambled on like this. You can look forward to a review of the book Paper Towns, a recap of my July/end-of-summer bucket list, and possibly a letter to incoming high school freshmen. Or you can not look forward to them. They’ll be on my blog regardless.



How Do You Write With a View?

Dear reader,
I departed from Detroit’s airport about an hour ago and I have been in the air ever since, wondering what I should write about.
At first I thought I would write about why I hate taking pictures. Or why my self confidence is so low. But I decided that, ultimately, that wasn’t a good idea because it would be pointless and negative and it would probably be better to write an entry like that once I’ve changed. But I’m not ready for that yet.
Then Macklemore’s “10,000 hours” started playing through my headphones and I heard my favorite line: the greats aren’t great because at birth they could paint. They greats are great because they paint a lot.” This line was enough to inspire a spark inside me and I prepared to write when I looked outside.
We were just beneath the clouds, close enough to the ground that I could see the buildings and the cars clearly, but far enough away that everything looked fake. It was as if everything was a set piece on a child’s intricate playtable. It was hard to believe that everything was lifelike and real. It was hard to believe there were actual people living in these items. Driving their cars around. Sitting on their front porches. Going about their daily lives as unique individuals, just like everyone else.
So I started to write about that. About how I love flying. How I love noticing these people and realizing they have their own story. And how some of the people I see in the airport are about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime!
But after a few minutes of writing, I looked up again and what I saw was breathtaking. Everything was completely white for a few moments. I could see the wing but the entire plane was covered in a strong, white mist. And then we emerged. All of a sudden we were above the clouds–what looked like puffy cotton balls from my windowseat. The sky was different shades of blue and there was a soft pink in the far distance. I tried to take a picture but, of course, my iPhone and the dirty window can’t recreate the beautiful sight I had in front of me for a few moments.
Which brings me back to my question: how do you write with such a view? I couldn’t look away for a good 5 minutes and that was only because I decided to desperately jot down my fleeting thoughts. I agree that views like this create wonderful inspirations, but I wouldn’t have been able to write more than 100 words, even if I wanted to.
But why would I want to? I knew the view would only be there momentarily, so I looked out into it and lost myself. I lost my train of thought and I forgot I was using a public form of transportation. I was alone with my thoughts, and I just had to trust myself to remember them after the moments passed.
So I don’t know what the point of this entry is either. And because I’m typing this on my phone, I don’t know what it’ll look like on my blog. But I feel like I need to leave you, the reader, with something. So maybe don’t feel the need to capture everything. Or maybe just look up and outside every once in a while. Our earth is truly beautiful, as are our lives. And sometimes all it takes to see it is a few moments with a bird’s eye view.