I have always felt as though strings were attached, like I was life's marionette. My name is Ivy, and I’m fifteen. I have medium colored brown hair, hazel eyes, and two older siblings. I’m your typical, yet somehow, not typical fifteen-year-old. Since I was around four, I have had very present medical issues: heat strokes, chronic tonsillitis, and even a dormant form of epilepsy. Not only do I have all these medical issues, I have social problems as well. In Pre-K, I started being bullied for the why I smiled, the way my hair was cut, and even the color of my eyes. The same person continued to bully me until the seventh grade when she moved. On June 26th, 2019, I was diagnosed with JME, also known as Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy. It really took a toll on my life.
I never stopped smiling though. I’ve always been able to find some sort of happiness in my dull world. Music is one of my saviors. It helps me look up from the ground and admire the walls surrounding me. I notice every little detail someone puts into their life. I smile, yet the sadness I try to bury deep within always sneaks up and decides to stay a while. The smile disappears, and I’m back to the cold. There are times within the cold that I still hold a smile. I smile knowing I’ll find my way back to the light. Maybe my girlfriend will pull me back through, or let it be my sister who as always been there for me. Try as I might, I can never bring myself back. I always need help to smile again.
Even though I have these moments, they never last for too long. I’m thankful for that, but the moments of happiness and light never last long either. It’s like I live in this never ending circle, as said in The Lion King in “The Circle of Life.” I wish for one day where my strings break, and I live for myself, not being controlled by the cold. I want to control myself and who I aspire to be. I always think about the future, hoping this circle would eventually break and become a line that ends when I die. I’m not scared of death or the things I can’t control; I’m only scared of things like the dark and heights. I relate my life to Charlie Brown; I’m always down on myself but always find away to look up. I have this goal in life, make everyone I meet smile, if only at least once. Of course, there will always be people who don’t like you right off the bat, even when you first met them. I run into a lot of those people. My girlfriend bases it on luck, and she’s constantly telling me my life isn't as bad as I make it seem. Sometimes, when we fight each other, I make her mad. She tells me I’m an attention whore who constantly seeks sympathy. She regrets it later, because she knows I’m not actually like that. Unfortunately, she only knows the online me. She only knows the pictures of weird faces I make and send to her and pictures of my eight-year-old cat. She only knows what I’ve told her. Even though I’ve told her so much about me, she still doesn't help me through tough times in the cold. She refuses to, but she still manages to unintentionally help. Then again, she has her own problems with her constant fight with depression weighing her down.
One day, I hope to meet her. She means a lot to me. Sixteen hours and twenty one minutes away. Approximately one thousand twenty six miles away. Recently when I’ve been in the cold, it has lasted longer than others. Every time I’m in school, I go farther in. The light keeps fading more. I fear I might lose who I am again. My head is scrambled, like the eggs I eat for breakfast sometimes. My thoughts are everywhere from musical practice to what I’ll be doing May 20th. Writing everything down may help in some way. It’s what I think to myself, so I do. Many of my random writings are found in the notes on my phone. Many of them make the people around me cry. They usually ask, “You truly feel like this?” or “Have you told your mom?” The second is the most frequent question that I’ve been asked. My answer: no. I haven’t told my mom. I’m scared of what she may say to me. I’m scared of what she may think. Will she think of me differently? Will she think I’m more mature than my age? I am going through problems adults in their early to late twenties do--line insurance issues! I get the second most asked question, “What about your dad; have you talked to him?” My mom and dad’s divorce was final when I was four years old. I spend every other weekend with my dad. On holidays, my dad comes to my mom’s house and stays there with us. I can talk to him about this, but he usually just gives me advice. That is what everyone usually gives me. I appreciate and cherish advice, but it won’t help me talk to my mom.
Due to all of these factors in my life, I shut myself out. I don’t show emotion. I haven’t shown my emotions to my peers in years. I don’t cry in front of them. Many days go by, and I wonder, why am I worth people’s time? Why do people care so much about me? No one answers, but I’m still waiting, still holding on to my dreams. I don’t love myself; I put on a facade that says I do to a degree. No one calls me out on it. Everyone in today’s generation is blind. THEY ONLY SEE THEMSELVES! I, and a select few people, see the others around us. I’m not blinded by my own looks, personality, or money. I am blinded by my hair as I look down at the ground when I walk. When I see someone around me crying, I rush over and try to help them, while others just turn their noses up and continue walking. Some of my friends call me a “mom” because of this. They also tell me I help them through more of their hardships then their own parent(s). I guess it’s because of how I was raised. I’ve done this my whole life.
I fight life itself. I rarely fight those around me, but when I do, there is a good reason. When I’m finally happy again, I’ll become a mini sun. Let rays of light shine from my being. I thank all the people who have helped me through my hard times recently. You’ve made me feel like a real person instead of a worthless, unwanted, stupid high school student. I am resilient to what harm life wants to dish out to me. With the people who stand by me, I become stronger. I become more open, no longer closing myself off. I tell people more things that are going on. I may forever be going in a circle, but I know one day I’ll break my cycle. Finally, genuinely smiling.
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You crafted that story so well! Each section could stand on it's own - hopefully you'll write out each section and we will read it in a later competition.
Amy - this is a very well written and communicative piece. Well done.
Thanks Gina for the feedback!
Amy. Keep writing you’ve got lots to share. Good job on this piece!
Thank you for the feedback, I will definitely keep writing!
Amazing story! I could feel your feelings throughout amazing!!