The Uncertain Side of Me

October 24th, 2017. 10:30 A.M.

Today I feel very melancholy. If my soul were a sky it would consist of the thick, grey clouds that loom above us before a long storm. That’s how I feel today.

It seems as when things look up, and the world feels a little more balanced than usual, it always ends up taking a steep decline, downhill, all at once, an avalanche.

Days like these make me question if I really know who I am. Part of me theorizes that this is because the weather is changing and I am quite known to change with the seasons, I know this.

I suppose it’s hard to know who you are when you are consistently contradicting yourself, as I do. I am a being built on too many beginnings and hardly enough endings. I go from wanting to stay in this town forever, to calling it “Hell” and craving nothing more than to run away and start all over- because I am in love with beginnings and I never want to stay long enough to see how things will end. Maybe it’s the fear of getting hurt. How can I be burnt by the fire if the flames haven’t caught up with me yet?

Here’s another contradiction, as well as a metaphor in my mind: I’m petrified of the fire, the smoke, the ash, but sometimes I want to force myself into the chaos of life just to see what would happen. I believe this stems from my boredom, from the way my life has never been predictable, teaching me to grow up and loathe normality. It’s rather exhausting, I might add. It leads to many effects, such as myself making spur-of-the-moment impulsive decisions, choices that could be even risky or dangerous or not well-thought out ideas.

Alas, these are only several of the fault lines I possess, each of them capable of producing earthquakes within me. I try to take the time to examine these defects inside of me. Even if some of the answers aren’t those I want to hear, it’s the process of discovering who I am that matters.

“Somehow, we’ll find it. The balance between whom we wish to be and who we need to be. But for now, we simply have to be satisfied with who we are.”

-Brandon Sanderson

E.S., Sweet Spade

Weapons of Your Mind

October 20th, 2017.

11:57 A.M.

“Survival is the ability to swim in strange water.”

Don’t let your thoughts grab your heart strings and control them unforgivably. Don’t you dare let this life get the best of you, alright? Promise me.

Coming from someone who knows- your mind has the potential to do amazing things, but alas, it also has the potential to destroy anything it pleases.

I have been at the point in life where my mind took control of everything. It was on a warpath, fighting until I was hurt in the end. I didn’t even realize what was happening, it was like a movie that I couldn’t pause. If I could go back to that point, I would take myself by the shoulders and say, “Stop! Take a step back and look at you, obliterating yourself with careless abandon..” I would plead for this. But it wasn’t the logical side of me working things, you see. I was thinking the worst thoughts, the worst outcomes and in turn- it took me to a terrible place. A place I had never known, a sort of living hell inside of my mind. This affected everything.

Take a deep breath. Step back, just hold still for a moment. You control your life, and it’s far too short to let the negativity take the reins. Let go of the times you have been injured. Let go and set yourself free. AT least try. For me. Keep trying until you get tired of trying, and you let it happen. You have to hang in there, you have to trust me on this one. You are so alive, so powerful. Find that power instead of refusing it.

E.S., Sweet Spade

What Growing Up Has Taught Me

What Growing Up Has Taught Me

By Eden Smith

Time. It is the one word that possess the ability to single-handedly cause me anxiety.

We have time. We have time to make mistakes, we have time to learn from them. We have time to start a family, to work towards our dreams.

On the flip side, we don’t have time. We don’t have time to make everyone happy, to say “I love you” enough. We don’t have time to waste, because our time is limited. That’s scary.

Growing up is all kinds of things. It’s sad, it’s exciting, its nostalgic. We don’t really think about the fact that one day, the chapter of your childhood in the book of life closes. Once it has, there’s no going back to change anything, no editing it to add in any more memories. After that, a new chapter starts, -young adulthood- and so on.

I am seventeen years old. I have been on this perplexing and vivid planet for exactly 17 years and seven months. In total, that is 211 months, 916 weeks, 6,417 days, and 9,241,775 minutes. Every second of every day, those numbers increase. In this amount of time, I have discovered some things that I believe one can only learn with time.

The most notable thing I have noticed in my life, is that as I get older, I am accepting who I am. I feel like middle school and early high school is spent not discovering who you are, but instead, trying to blend in and survive the hormonal and physical changes that are inevitably forced upon you. Once this passes, you start to worry less about the way people see you.  You begin to embrace the person you are. You acknowledge that you are naturally beautiful and flaws are not as important as they’re made out to be.

Don’t allow yourself to be put into a box. Humans have this peculiar tendency to want to be classified. Maybe it’s a way of having security in themselves, having a place to belong, a purpose. The way I see it, putting yourself in a box is doing nothing but limiting you. Don’t be so easily labeled.

You must stop waiting for life to come to you. Stop making 11:11 wishes and hoping for adventures and people to come knocking at your door. The first step to finding these things is to directly go out and experience them. Don’t sit around waiting for the love of your life. Don’t only date people because you’re looking for someone to spend the rest of your life with. That’s boring. Instead; meet the wrong people. They will teach you what to really search for in the right ones. Date people for the experience, to see new sides of life and love. Who knows, maybe you’ll stumble upon “the one.” The point is, they will all leave fingerprints on your past either way.

Freezing time is figuratively possible, and you should do it whenever you can. As I mentioned previously, time is something that we either have too much of or not enough. There are things, though, that can stop it for short moments. Things like laughing until your stomach is unbearably tight, or kissing the person who means everything to you.  They produce bursts of feelings inside of us, like fireworks. For those short moments, we have no worry for the past, present, or future. That’s my definition of time stopping on Earth.

I am still growing up. Every day I learn new lessons and insights in this crazy, unpredictable life- and honestly, no matter what age you are, I don’t think that ever stops.

E.S., Sweet Spade

 

A Letter to My Future Self

A letter to my future self

June 14, 2017

12:06 a.m.

E,

Life is going to get insane. The tide will rise and fall, the sun will come and go. You will have your highest highs and your lowest lows. Life changes despite if you want it to or not. But this letter is not about the bad parts of life, or even overcoming them (because you will). You will do great things… I have hope in that. This letter is a seventeen-year-old version of yourself explaining what she sees life to be about.

I hope you continue to take risks. To believe without seeing, to jump without being able to see the ground below. That is a charming thing, to have faith in the unknown. I have come to live by the quote by Eleanor Roosevelt: “Do one thing every day that scares you.”

Don’t beat yourself up over the mistakes you make. That is human nature, baby. You are going to tumble and fall and scratch your knees up sometimes. That’s how it is. That’s the only way you learn. Learn from your mistakes, take away from them what you will, and then move on.

Love has a different definition to everyone, but to me, it is the most important thing we have. It is like magic, that feeling of butterflies in your stomach and the notion that you would do anything for the people that you love. It has no limitations, no rules. A life lived without loving to your maximum capacity is not a life lived to the fullest. There are so many different forms of love. There is the romantic love; the kind that gives you a fluttery feeling throughout your whole body. There’s also the friendship love; the one you feel for your friends who know you better than you do. Yet, I am not implying to only fall in love with people. I want you to fall in love with places, with cotton-candy skies, with morning air and with the smell of coffee. Fall in love with the way the old man plays his guitar on the side of a bridge. Fall in love with the way the sun feels on your skin after swimming. The more you love life, the more it will love you back.

Capture every single memory. I live through photography and writing, because they allow time to be frozen. Jot down the little things that make you smile, the things you never want to forget about. Not just the big moments that everyone has, like getting married or graduating, but rather, the small things. The moments you share with those close to you. The moments that produce a certain nostalgia in the years following.

If sometimes you find it hard to live this life (and you will), then live it for others. Live it for your little sister, who believes in you. Live it for your friends, who want to see nothing but your smile. Live it for your dad, who may have not chosen all the best paths… but you will. Live it in your mother’s spirit, and even though she isn’t here to watch you, know that she would be proud of you.

E

A Poem to Those Who Wander

A Poem, to Those Who Wander

BY EDEN SMITH

 

Did you ever want to up and leave

And never turn around,

On all the things you never tried

Just leave, without a sound?

Did you ever want to take a risk

To leave your comfort zone,

To feel your heart beat faster

And scare you to the bone?

Did you ever want to runaway

To freely roam the land,

To watch a west-coast sunset

With your toes between the sand?

Adventure is calling you by name

Begging you to fly,

To put aside your hopes and fears

And sing your battle cry

Eden Smith, Sweet Spade

There Are Two Parts to Your Soul

There Are Two Parts to Your Soul

By: E.S.

In the depths of each of us, there are two people. It’s a challenging thing, because if one outweighs the other, it causes problems in our lives, and we must find balance.

The first person, the more significant one. The one who works hard and is self-sufficient, who gets favorable grades and a place in the world. A pre-determined spot. The one who wins, the powerful one. The one who has a steady stream of friends and hope. The one who is responsible and a role model to those who surround them. The one who saves their money and the one whom you have worked your whole life to achieve, the one with the steady mentality and substantial heart.

But then there’s the other.

The one woven deep within your soul, because something is aching through your bones, and it calls to you like a siren.

The one who roams and runs, wildly and freely. The one who goes 130 down the highway in the middle of the night screaming hysterically with a packed car of friends and strangers. The one who doesn’t have to meet and “get to know” their type of people, because you just feel them already. You can sense it, the night owls and wild ones like you. You can get in a car with these people and be best friends by the end of the night. It’s magical… but the thing that hurts about these people is that they make memories that the other type of person can’t, and never will.

It will take a while to find an equilibrium between the two, and it’ll likely tear you apart trying. But you must try.

You will have people wondering about your mystery and how you do it. How you tie these two lives together without being foolish. It’s art, because your soul is a canvas and how you decide to paint it is all up to you.

E.S. , Sweet Spade

The 4 Stages of Losing Someone Who’s Alive

The Four Stages of Losing Someone Who’s Alive

By: E.S.

 

Stage 1

The absence

On the outside you tell yourself that their absence is temporary and they will be back and things will be back to “normal” and you’ll smell them again and hear their laugh and things will be okay and you aren’t worried or scared to death

But on the inside, somewhere deep within your soul you have a feeling that maybe you’ll never see them again and maybe the last time you saw them was the last time for good and then you can’t even remember the last thing you said and, oh yeah, it was I love you

And at this point their absence stings but it doesn’t burn

Stage 2

The begging

You send so many text messages, and they start well-thought out and then they turn impulsive, your pride doesn’t matter anymore and you call again and again, so much that you memorize how many times it rings before you get sent to voicemail, exactly six, and you wonder what you’ve done and if it’s repairable or not. And then your own heart starts screaming at you, what have you done?!, what have you done to lose their love, why don’t they love you anymore?

You beg them and you wait and wait and you wonder, what if you died, would they care then? And you know you would never do such a thing, but still you wonder and it tears you apart and nobody knows

Stage 3

The memory

You tell yourself not to look

Not to look at all the pictures and videos and letters and notes from the past nine years, and it takes everything you have but now and then when you’re alone, you’ll find yourself reading the old emails, the funny ones, and they still make you laugh and then you cry. Into a ball on your bed, crawling under the covers and trembling and hiding from it all. Why won’t it stop?

And one day you see them in a shopping center while you’re with other friends, and you make eye contact for two seconds and you feel a spark of something in your heart, and you start shaking and your throat closes and you look away.

Stage 4

The mending of yourself

It will come in small bursts, but you will notice your spirit reviving. You find things that you never found while they were with you, and you will bloom just like its spring and you are a daisy and you will lose the numbness and the tears will lift from your cheeks and they won’t be able to hurt you anymore. You will find light and life within new people, and new hope, and new adventures, and they will be nothing but a memory

Eden Smith, Sweet Spade

Forgiveness is Freedom

Time and time again, we find ourselves holding grudges somewhere inside of us that seemingly cannot be mended. No medicine, no words, no tears could fix the hurt that this person has inflicted onto us. Maybe, rather, we are angry at them because of the hurt they’re inflicting upon themselves- and we love them, and it’s painful to watch them destroy themselves in the way they do.

Nevertheless- we must come to the realization that this only leaves things at a stalemate- and here’s 12 reasons as to why forgiveness is the only  option you’ve got to win the war.

  1. Forgiving someone who hurt you is not you letting your guard down or withdrawing your power- it’s not you showing weakness. It’s you deciding to direct your greatness elsewhere.
  2. “If you can’t forgive and forget, pick one.”

Robert Brault

  1. To forgive is to let go. How can you stand tall if you have a merciless weight on your shoulders?
  2. It’s time to stop waiting for the person who broke you to come back and fix you.
  3. Not a single living being is flawless and we all miss a beat sometimes. It is our nature, it is in our blood to make mistakes and it’s up to us whether or not we grow from them.
  4. Brave people do not hold anything against those who have wronged them.
  5. Building trust and love with others in our lives becomes nearly impossible when we cannot forgive.
  6. You do not need to hear an apology in order to offer your forgiveness.
  7. Forgiveness lowers anxiety, blood pressure, depression, and improves pain tolerance.
  8. Whenever you are angry with yourself, you always end up forgiving yourself again and again. It’s like that with everyone else, too.
  9. Think of all the wrong things you’ve done, all the mistakes you’ve made. What if you were never forgiven?
  10. Forgiving people doesn’t have to mean letting them back in– it just means letting them go without hard feelings and tension.

E.S. Sweet Spade

A Dream of You and I

Let’s sit outside in the green clover patches and whisper flower words to one another. Let’s sit there and lie to make the pain less painful.

Tell me you love me and that I’m the only thing you’ve ever wanted, tell me that if you could have anything it would be me. Pick a dandelion and blow it at my cheeks, turning them pink for you.

I’ll tell you that I still think of your eyes when I see the grass start to come alive again in the springtime, and of your soul when it’s foggy in the mornings. I’ll declare my everlasting fidelity to you, because I grow relentlessly tired of everyone else, and your intelligence matches no other.

Let’s sit out there until the sun sets, and with it, all of the complications of our lives. We can pretend that we aren’t real and that we are dreaming. We can let the darkness obliterate the walls that time has built between us, and all of the nights I wished my heart wasn’t achingly connected to yours.

Let’s look at the stars and construct our own constellations. We can chase each other around, running like we have nothing else to lose, until the pitter-patter of our hearts becomes audible, and our rising breaths force our chests to touch the sky.

Sit outside with me in the clover patches and say what you never got the chance to say. Let’s whisper words that don’t have any significance and make promises we won’t ever keep.

E.S. Sweet Spade

Stormy Uncertainties

 Wednesday, March 1st, 2017

3:41 a.m. storming outside

Hi,

So as I sit here typing this, I am doing the only thing I possibly know how to do- the only thing I am good at, and that is writing when my heart wills nothing else. Sleepless, tossing, turning. The only light in this dark room is coming from the screen on which I type, and the only sound coming from the rain beckoning from outside my window, relentlessly.

Here’s the thing keeping me awake. I am terrified to pursue writing in my life.

Because, (and I know you can’t start a sentence with “because” but who cares, its almost four in the morning), I think I’m scared to fail at what I love best. Journalism is founded on truth, and I have to be honest with myself, to myself. I mean, if I can’t be honest with only me, then I shouldn’t even be trying this. So here.

From the time I was little- and I’m talking 2nd grade little- I wrote stories. I would staple together handmade books and pretend I was a teacher, reading them to my class. Growing up, my father had my sister and I write one short story a week, and we kept them in folders in the downstairs desk drawer. I loved that.

I always said I was going to be an author, a writer.

Then, by the time I reached high school, that’s when it struck me that this was not what I wanted to do- it was something of my destiny. The words that I scrawled into journal after journal, each year as I grew into a young adult, were woven into my veins and writing was in my bloodstream. It became my safe-place, my escape, my drug. When I was hurt, or heartbroken, or tremendously elated, I would take the things inside my head and orchestrate them onto paper, like my thoughts were music notes and I was the composer.

Photography is another evidence of truth. through it, I can travel back in time, and I take photos to remember the way I felt in that moment.

When I was in 1st grade, I got my first camera. It was a strawberry shortcake, pink little camera, a disposable, with no screen. I had the time of my life taking blurry, chaotic photos with it.

When I was in 4th grade, I got my first digital camera. It was a pink Polaroid that I took everywhere with me. I documented my elementary and middle school life and made videos on YouTube to remember the way life was back then.

When I was 16, I got my first professional camera. This changed my life, because it gave me a portal to another planet. When I am sad, I leave the house with only it, myself, and a watch. I leave the neighborhood, leave people and pain behind and explore. I see beauty in the small things, like abandoned silos and small spider webs. The other day, I found a clover patch that smelt of fresh earth and I sat there for maybe an hour, loving up the seemingly millions of them. They reminded me of hope and my old house in the springtime, and so I took photos of them.

I suppose this is my rambling of why I do what I do. I suppose this is my subconscious mind speaking to me, telling me that i must keep going despite the doubt. i must keep blooming.

 

E.S.