The Awakening Dream

October 17, 2008
By kailey kaneshiro, Honolulu, HI

It was a silent and cold night in December as we walk across the frozen plain. The only warmth brought is by dreams of the green grass beneath the snow, and the welcoming smiles of family waiting for us back home. The chill of these past nights have slowly clawed its way into our hearts, and the blood that still stains the pearly white ground, haunts us all. The memories of the way my heart pulsed in my ears threatening to burst through my chest, of how my body shook with the earth as bombs laid waste to the land, and the sight of my comrades wrought with pain taking their last breath, flash across my mind’s eye like a movie. I see myself walking on a thin line of rope wavering between sanity and insanity, and the only thing keeping me balanced is a long stick I hold in my hand; faith, love, and hope that I can make it to the other side.

With a jolt I wake up from my dream, and quickly looking around I see that a video of the Civil War is playing, and my teacher across the room fervently writing at her desk. I turn my attention back to the screen and the mysterious dream replays in my head as my eyes take in the scene of a man pride fully holding a red, white and blue stripped flag. My heart jumps as I remember the intense emotions I felt in the dream, as if I were one of the soldiers depicted in the video, and I shiver at the memory of the cold. Respect beats away the chill as I gain a new understanding of what exactly those soldiers did for our country. I look around my pristine classroom, my freshly pressed uniform, the various faces sitting around me and realize that this was all fought for, earned and paid for at the highest of price.
Those noble men and women, ranging from very young to very old gave their lives for me, for us, for a country. To think of a life without freedom, education, and the mixing of cultures and races brings another shiver up my spine. I bask in the freedom to work and elevate my status in society, to speak my mind, and hold inalienable rights. I value the knowledge and experience I gain as I attend classes five days a week, and the opportunities that soon follow. I gladly embrace the new faces I see and say a silent thank you for the friendships that blossom, and happily dance in the diverse cultures I’m exposed to every day.
A myriad of feelings swirl within me as I reflect on all this. I am astonished and mystified because for so long I have overlooked the lives of the people I should have recognized the most. A stripe of sorrow slashes at this thought of all the times I have taken things for granted, not knowing the price that was paid. Enlightenment tingles in my brain as the bell rings and I walk purposefully to my teacher. It is there I tell her of how thankful I am that she chose to teach us the history of our nation, and explain how I’ve gained a new perspective on the value of things. As I leave her with a bewildered look on her face, my heart remains smiling and thanking the veterans of our county’s past.

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