Wednesday, December 29, 2010

I wish you enough.

"I wish you enough sun to keep your attitude bright no matter how gray the day may appear
I wish you enough rain to appreciate the sun even more...
I wish you enough happiness to keep your spirit alive and everlasting.
I wish you enough pain so that even the smallest of joys in life may appear even bigger.
I wish you enough gain to satisfy your wanting.
I wish you enough loss to appreciate all that you possess.
I wish you enough love so that you may appreciate the heartbreaks.
I wish you enough hellos to get you through the final goodbye. " -unknown
Mom, this is my wish for the world. This is my wish for my life. That I may live a life that celebrates yours. That I may give those in my life enough love to sustain them in their trials, whatever those may be. That I may find the largest amount of joy in the smallest things. That I may appreciate what I have been given and what has been taken away- for I know that this is all for a purpose.

To those whom I love beyond all bounds, I wish you enough.

Let your love always win. Let your light always shine. Let your heart always be open.
Love always and forever,

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Unseen Beauty.

365 days ago I promised to wear the same ring ever day until the moment you stepped back into our house. Its been 366 days since you were home. I want to tell you I'm still wearing it.
This picture is of your beach on the day we let you go. I'm happy that you are celebrating today and are not in any pain. 365 days ago you were in surgery and now you are in heaven. We love you mom, beyond measure. Enjoy the unseen beauty up there in the sky.
 Love always and forever
Your Daughter,

Friday, December 17, 2010

A Life that is Lovely

I can't believe it. Fall semester is over.

Even more shocking for me is how sad I am that it is.

Advanced Placement. Those two words alone terrify my soul. I never have believed that I deserve to be in a class with such prestige. I'm not advanced in any manner, I'm just Britt.

Yet, despite my fears I entered Advanced Placement Literature this fall. Still scared of failure, I contemplated whether my writing could support me and whether I would be able to produce work my teacher could be proud of.

Looking back now I realize neither of those things truly matter...sure writing was 70% of my grade, but writing techniques will never be the answer to the question : Am I good enough for "Advanced Placement"?

 What I gained from Ap Literature, what I gained from my teacher, was a mentality that my life is a lovely piece of work. I learned that despite heartache, difficulties focusing, and my momentary defeatist life is so lovely.

I learned in Ap Lit who to analyze a piece of literary merit. I learned about syntax, Shakespeare, and open questions...At least that was the learning supported by curriculum.

However, in my mind I learned far beyond what my Bedford reader could provide me with. I learned that I am good enough. I  learned that smarts aren't measured in grades. I was able to shape my own definition of what "smart" is.

People who are smart to me: pour their heart into their work, invest in others, use their tools and strengths to make a difference, and they believe in themselves and the power they hold with their words.

I became smart in Ap Lit. I learned how to put my heart out on paper. I learned how to analyze  piece of work, yes...but I learned how to make that analysis mine. I invested in others success by joining study groups at Starbucks with my Ap Lit family members and aiding them when I could.

 I, through my time in Ap Lit, had a moment of self awakening where I realized that in order for my writing to evoke change, I had to believe in the words that I wrote. I had to believe in what I wrote not only when I composed  letters or blog entries -but every time I that I created a written work. No matter the style: expressive, analytical or expository- I still had to believe in what I said. It was Ap Lit where I learned to become passionate every time my pen hit the paper. I broke down my barriers.

It has always been difficult to find my voice when I write for a class because I become overly absorbed in the grade. I would always imagine my teacher with a red pen checking grammar and tearing my work to shreds.

In Ap Lit that changed. I began to imagine my teacher as a friend, a mentor who wanted to watch me succeed in writing. I imagined my teacher with a cup of coffee and a nice, gentle blue pen to write her feedback with. I  became less absorbed with whether a giant 8/9 was pasted on my paper or a measly 5...what mattered was if I got my point across. What mattered was whether I left a new piece of my heart on the page for all to read. Surprising to me, by owning my new mentality I actually received better scores.

I improved. Yet that wasn't what mattered. What mattered was that I slowly recognized that I gave a piece of my heart to my readers.

I will forever miss my Ap Literature course. I wasn't just a student, I was part of a unique family. I was apart of a  family who could write essays and attack prompts during the day, and then go to a midnight Harry Potter showing together at night.
I love my classmates and my teacher... and I love the tools and insights into the world that I have gained by taking this "Advanced Placement"course.

My life is lovely because I love my life. My life is lovely because I am passionate about what I do. My life is lovely because the people in it are lovely.

Live a life that is lovely. Define for yourself who you wish to be and what you wish to share with others... and chase after it, forever.
With Love,

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Scrambling to find bliss

Lately I have felt that my life is somewhat boring. I feel as though my life revolves around college applications, school work, clubs, and actual work. Today I feel as though I’ve made the first step in order to go from boring to blissful. (Don’t you just love that word? Blissful, well I do) I went to San Francisco!
Any who, despite the random introduction this post isn’t going to be a rant of my boring and stressful life… nor will it be an entry on the crazy adventures that the three of us girls had today in the wonderful city of San Fran. In fact, I would actually like to open your eyes into what I’ve discovered the past few days.

I somehow stumbled over this blog “Ramblings”. I don’t know the family, nor have any connection with them, yet I am touched. This blog is written by the mom of a 22 year old boy who because of a motor cross accident suffered traumatic brain damage. I feel particularly connected to this story as most of her posts describe her sons struggle through physical therapy and multiple brain surgeries. It's like a blast from the past for me. Watching as she writes about her frustrations with his inability to communicate and be the person she remembers. The greatest difference between our stories is what makes it such a struggle for me to read… her son, is progressing. He has been in therapy and learning to talk using switchboard communication. He has a trach, like my mom did, but is nowhere as far gone as she was. He will return home in 2 months approximately from a hospital in Boston (where the family lives). I am happy for them. From the bottom of my heart I appreciate her sharing his story…I’m not bitter. It hurts me sometimes to hear of his success…and sometimes I sit and wonder Why can he make it?…and MY mom didn’t?

Yet what I also realize is this: Even my mom’s disease had a great prognosis…there were/ are many successful recoveries from Moya Moya and I have to keep trying my best to recognize that. The way I sometimes think about it is like this...when my mom left this world, she become part of the slim statistic that didn’t make a full recovery…however, by becoming a part of that statistic she also made room for more successful stories. 1 in two million people receive the disease that my mother struggled with and by giving her all my mother did everything she could to prevent someone else from becoming a “1 out of” along with her. For that I admire her strength and courage.

Another thing. Reading this blog is painful at points... but its also a reminder of the things I once have forgotten. It reminds me of those little things and that small progress she had that put a smile on my face. “Ramblings” reminds me of how my mom loved taking on and off my dad’s watch, how she felt building a puzzle had become a game of tug of war, and how she was mesmerized with my sisters hair…it reminds me of the small pleasures, those lost in time and hidden under 2 months of heartache without her.

Find Bliss. Remember don't forget. Your life only becomes boring when you fail to find its small pleasures.Finding meaning behind digression and trials is a never ending battle-but one well worth your time and most importantly, your heart.
Love Always and Forever,