A Letter to Santa | Blogmas Day 5

Dear Santa,

I haven’t written to you in so long. Perhaps it was because any time you wrote back, you used ink from our printer and that added up… not cool. But I miss writing you and feeling all the magic in the air whenever I’d get a response. I really miss how exciting Christmas used to be. But now I’m 20 and I no longer ask for toys under the tree.

This year, I have other things in mind.

With one semester in the books, I’ve run out of a lot of the necessities for a college student- determination and patience. I’d love if you could replenish me. I have a very tough spring semester coming up and that would help a lot.

Also, this crazy weather… can you control that? I’m tired of wearing snow boots one day and rain boots the next. I know Ohio is notorious for the bipolar weather, but maybe just this Christmas we could make an exception. I don’t drive, so I always have to plan my grocery shopping around the warm days that I can walk to the store in. It would be nice if we could have warm weather (relatively warm for winter anyway) before Christmas. But of course we need to have snow on the ground by the 25th. If you could talk to Mother Nature or whoever is in charge, that would be awesome.

I’d also like to ask for a wonderful holiday with my family. I want to be in the Christmas spirit this year. I want us all to be. I want to be able to enjoy the season without my mind being preoccupied this year. So many Christmases have gone to waste and I don’t need it to happen again.

Finally, I’d like to thank you. Thank you for being such a huge part of my childhood. Thank you for giving me something magical to believe in. Thank you for proving to me that an imagination can fight the war in our minds.

Sincerely,

The Heart of a Little Girl

 

 

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An Open Letter to My Ex Best Friend

Dear Ex Best Friend  Hannah,

It’s been a while since we’ve really talked. Sure we’ve exchanged a few words on Instagram, but that’s all. It’s not like how it used to be, and for reasons only a select few truly know and understand. But that’s ok. I like it better that way. I won’t go into detail about what happened between us since you already know. And although this is an open letter, it’s for you.

It wasn’t easy for me to lose my best friend. I felt like I lost my sister. The pain I felt was similar to grieving the death of someone. Perhaps I was grieving the death of a friendship… that would make sense. For weeks after our split (that makes it sound like we were dating), I sat in bed and tried to convince myself that it was only a small bump in the road. But it wasn’t. It was a head on collision.

Time seemed to go by slower once we stopped talking. I know we had distanced a little beforehand, but this was even harder. I remember nights where I was going through something awful and the only words I could get out were “I want Hannah.” But you’re not Beetlejuice so saying your name didn’t bring you nearer.

I’m reminded of our adventures whenever I scroll through my Snapchat memories or Timehop notifications. I remember when we went to the fair for only a few minutes until I got upset over a boy so you took me to McDonald’s. We made fun of the truck in front of us for having their tow mirrors out when they weren’t towing anything. “Gotta look like big tough country folk with our big tow mirrors.” I remember our field trip senior year to D.C. when we bought ice cream and hid away in your hotel room. To this day, the littlest things can trigger memories. Whenever I’m out shopping and see mermaid things, my mind goes straight to you.

Thank you for the nearly ten years of friendship. Each moment we spent together helped build me into the person I am now. I still hear you in my head telling me how dumb I am when I make stupid decisions and I know I’ll have your guidance with me even if I don’t have you.

No matter what happened to us, I will still always love you for being the best friend a girl could ever ask for. You supported me, kept me sane (sometimes, anyway), and gave me great advice. It’s been roughly ten months since we stopped talking, but it feels like a lifetime without you.

I hope you succeed in all that you go after, and achieve all your dreams you’ve had since you were young. I’m still silently rooting for you in the shadows.

 

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To Zachary

My dearest Zachary,

With this special day just about over when I’m writing this, I’ve been thinking a lot about how much you mean to me. We’ve known each other for about a year, and the whole time you’ve been leaving your mark on me. Whenever I slip and say one of your signature phrases, I know that a piece of you is always with me.

You’ve been such an important part of my life for the past year- even when I really couldn’t stand you. You were the one I could always count on to cheer me up at school when I was having a bad day. I always knew that you’d either say something funny or just do something so stupid that it would make me laugh uncontrollably. Once we became good friends, I realized that you were so much more than just a person to laugh at/with. You were someone with aspirations that so few would ever imagine. You’re deeper than what I thought. You were in tough with your emotions in a way that I had never seen any other guy be. You cared for people so much more than I ever could. It amazed me. To this day, I am amazed by all that you are.

Our past few months together have been noting short of unbelievable. You’ve slow danced with me in my room until I’ve fallen over laughing and sang with me at the top of our lungs during car rides. Whenever we’re together, it feels like the happy parts of any Hallmark movie. Sometimes the smiles we have on our faces start to hurt, but we still can’t make them go away. But I really never want them to. Our smiles mean something so special to me. Especially when we’re laughing together. We laugh about the dumbest things until we’re red in the face (which isn’t hard since we both are a couple of tomatoes).

But with every high comes a low. We’ve been there for each other through questions of faith, personal heartache, and so much more. Although it seemed easy at times, we never gave up on each other. Some things we went through were so much more than people our age should ever have to go through, but not once did we leave each other’s side. And I think that speaks volumes about our relationship.

Now, since it’s your birthday (or at least it was before I posted this), I want to thank you for a few things- 18 things to be exact.

  1. Thank you for transferring to my school for my very last semester of high school.
  2. Thank you for giving me advice (even the times that it was about boys).
  3. Thank you for driving me to my senior prom AND letting me have the aux cord the whole time.
  4. Thank you for finally following me back on twitter in SEPTEMBER. SEPTEMBER. No, I promise I’m not mad that it took you nine months to follow me back.
  5. Thank you for having such a cool family that always makes me feel welcomed and at home.
  6. Thank you for rushing to my house in the middle of the night when I’m upset.
  7. Thank you for always motivating me and pushing me past the boundaries I set for myself.
  8. Thank you for having four letters in your name so all my friends could have a shirt.
  9. Thank you for telling me I’m right when I’m clearly wrong, but way too passionate to admit it.
  10. Thank you for listening to me when I share gossip or stories about work.
  11. Thank you for forehead kisses that put a smile on my face.
  12. Thank you for not laughing at me when I cry during The Grinch (or basically any movie. But especially The Grinch).
  13. Thank you for always telling me you’re proud of me.
  14. Thank you for singing Falling in Reverse with me way too loud.
  15. Thank you for not caring when my legs aren’t super smooth (you still crack jokes, but at least you’re not being serious).
  16. Thank you for calling me beautiful when I’m in sweats with no makeup and my hair tied back.
  17. Thank you for making time for me even though you have a crazy schedule that barely coordinates with mine.
  18. Thank you for being my best friend and boyfriend all wrapped up into one.

I want you to know that I am always on your side. I will root for you even when nobody else does. When you feel like you’re alone, remember you’ve got me now, and you’ll have me always. You’re the best thing to ever happen to me Zachary.

Happy (late) birthday.

I love you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To My Small Hometown

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I came to Wellington when I was three years old. For a three year old, anything can become a jungle or a princess’s castle with the right imagination; and that is what Wellington was to me. I grew up in a small village filled with people who encouraged my creativity, and for that, I must thank you all.

I experienced a lot of “firsts” in Wellington. My first friend, love, heartbreak, and funnel cake (my favorite first).  However, I did not respect the community that raised me as much as I should have. I spent years saying “I can’t wait to get out of here” and moping around self-loathingly. It wasn’t until recently that I realized how important of a role my hometown played in raising me. I come from a family of four completely diverse people, and this has shaped me in many ways, but the community we live in has impacted me even more. I learned how to welcome people with different lifestyles into my heart and life. This helped open doors for me that I would not have reached without the help of all the kind hearted individuals I met in Wellington.

Wellington is such a close knit community. Everyone knows each other here, which is both a blessing and a curse. You rarely hear, “hey, who is that kid over there?”  but are more likely to hear, “oh that kid? I know his parents, cousins, grandparents, great grandparents, neighbors, and dentist.” That’s one of the coolest parts of this village. Nobody has to wear “Hello. My name is…” tags around here. Then again, if you screw up, your name could be a headline title in tomorrow’s paper. Since we are so small, our graduating class peeks at around 105. Thank the Lord though, because I don’t know what I would do if we had to spend an entire day sweating through our caps and gowns in the high school gymnasium. But we have been together through everything, whether it be good or bad. I’ve watched our community come together in times of mourning and celebration. The beauty of it all is astounding.

If you’re from Wellington, you know I can’t go without acknowledging the biggest event we hold in our small community- the Lorain County Fair. Every summer we break out our piggy banks and take a circular stroll in the big carnival. Concerts, tractor pulls, demolition derbies, and animal shows are what make our summers, well, summer. For those of us who live close enough, we never even have to purchase a ticket to the nightly events. We can hear the Beach Boys and revving of engines from our homes. But for students in the area, we all know that once the fair is over, we have only a few days until school rears its ugly head.

Although we’ve had our differences, I would like to thank my hometown for raising me. I have no shred of doubt in my mind that you did a good job. Thank you for providing great peers that I would eventually call my bestfriends. Thank you for building a community that would inspire me everywhere I turned. Finally, thank you for being Wellingtonians that I will always have a special bond with. I will never forget the town that I grew up in.

 

 

To Those Affected by My Anxiety

Anxiety is a bitch. It not only hurts me, but everyone around me. A lot of the time, it can scare others enough to make them leave. For those who stay, it’s an emotional rollercoaster. The struggles involved are draining on both ends. That’s why I’m writing this. This is for anyone who has been impacted by my anxiety.

I guess I should start off by apologizing. Sometimes it can get exhausting and I recognize that. It takes plenty of patience and practice to deal with me. Anxiety affects me in many different ways, some of which I have yet to master. I know it can get excruciating at times, and I am deeply apologetic for the amount of effort I require from others. There are times when I am fully aware of how ridiculous my anxiety can be, and how annoying it may seem to others. Trust me, I know I’m being a pain in the ass, but it’s not something I can handle. Irrational fears can swallow us alive. We need reassurance almost all the time, and I know for a lot of people that can take its toll. It’s a scary thing for those of us with anxiety. We often worry that asking for the affection that we need may start to feel repetitive to others and maybe eventually ruin the relationship. So for every chaotic moment that we have shared where you have questioned your sanity as well as mine, I am deeply sorry.

Although I’m sorry for the trouble I’ve caused and the seemingly unnecessary chaos, I am also thankful for your constant support. The reassurance from everybody helps more than you could imagine. I’d especially like to thank everyone who has taken time to research anxiety disorders and how to respond to them. I know that it can be scary at times, but having stable relationships with people is extremely helpful. I feel a sense of trust between us and it helps prevent attacks. I owe you all so much for watching out for me.

My boyfriend deserves recognition for his hard work in taking care of me. In our nine short months together, he has learned how to effectively calm down my breathing and get my attacks few and far between. He has become my second home, and even the sound of his voice can calm me down in my darkest moments. One night that I will never forget is when I had a panic attack in my living room. For those who don’t know me too well, I rarely go in my living room. There’s no real reason behind it, but I just feel more comfortable in my bedroom. Once my boyfriend realized that I was breathing heavily, he took action right away. He held me tight and told me, “everything will be ok. Do you want to go to your room? Let’s get you out of here.” I felt my body trembling as he helped me out of my seat. He helped me to my room, where he continued to assure me that things would pass. He rocked me back and forth and reminded me that I had beaten these types of attacks before and that I could do it again. He told me to remember my breathing, and then held me silently until I calmed down. If he hadn’t helped me get to a safer environment, I wouldn’t have moved and things wouldn’t have gotten better.

As I said at the very beginning, anxiety is a bitch. It’s something that I’ve been learning to understand and cope with, however, because without it, I may not have met many of the people that I have. As strange as it sounds, I am thankful for my anxiety and for the doors that it has opened for me. That was such a strange sentence to type. Optimism and anxiety in the same sentence? It’s kind of weird, but if you think about it, it makes sense. It’s taught me plenty about myself and others, and that has helped me grow. So for anyone who has been directly affected by my anxiety, I apologize, thank, and applaud you. You are the greatest friends I could ask for. Thank you for constantly believing in me and for encouraging me to better myself despite my disorder.

Photographer captures anxiety in a new light.