A Journal of a Lifetime | Teen Ink

A Journal of a Lifetime

January 16, 2015
By Kyle Kan, South Pasadena, California
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Kyle Kan, South Pasadena, California
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Author's note:

Some of the stories come from my own personal experience, including the NANOWRIMO idea regarding the boy with cancer. That boy was me, six years ago, and I decided to write that part of the story through the perspective of my father. I tried to imagine the challenges that my father faced as I went through with my own.

Monday, January 10, 2011
So this seems pretty stupid. I really am not even sure what I am suppose to say. I mean, come on! How am I supposed to talk about my feelings and that garbage? Isn’t that all just useless stuff, I mean, guys don’t really have any feelings; that’s just for girls. Who even writes in a journal? You can’t even call it a journal can you? It’s just a dumb diary, a diary for dudes, but that’s the stupidest waste of time that I have ever heard. So what am i even supposed to talk about. I mean, I had school, whoop-dee-doo. Is that how you even write that, jeez. That’s what’s soooo stupid about this whole journal thing. Why can’t I just talk to myself, that’s way better than having to waste time just writing down how I feel. I can’t believe it though, mom just had to ask me how my day was yesterday, and when I said, “it was fine,” she just went off! What the heck, that’s so stupid, telling me I need to be more “expressive”. What does that even mean!?!  And then I wake up today and mom comes in and gives me this piece of crap. A fricking journal! Why do I even have to do this? I already know who I am, I don’t the need the “self discovery” baloney, jeez.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011
I ate some breakfast today: it was like a piece of bread. Then I drank some water. Then I brushed my teeth. After that, I washed my face.
JEEZ, what am I even supposed to say. There isn’t even a point to this. Am I just supposed to say what has happened? This is literally just me writing what happened. why do I need to waste my time filling out this entire journal? This is literally going to take the rest of my life, this is so boring. I can’t take it, I’m done, I’m done with this.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011
Mom, I hate you for this. Why do I even have to do this stupid thing? Why does she always come up with the stupidest ideas? I bet this is just something to get me to leave her alone. She and her stupid new boyfriend. That guy is just a jerk, super creepy too. We don’t need another person in our lives. Things were fine the way they were and then this creep shows up. Mom must be going senile or something, falling for that freak. What else should I write about, the more random stuff I fill this with, the faster I can be done. Oh, so Cameron came home today from school with a bloody nose. Yeah, that idiot probably fell over in the playground at school playing with older kids. He’s always trying to act tough, like a little Chihuahua, all bark, no bite. That kid needs to find some friends, he’s a loner. Yeah, that’s about it, blah blah blah, ha, that will show mom, take up some space.

Thursday, January 13, 2011
Ok now I’m pissed, who is this Aidan kid! Thinking he can pick on my brother, WHO DOES HE THINK HE IS! Like what the heck, punching Cam in nose yesterday and then taking his lunch today. I swear, if i see this kid, I’m gonna smash in his little fourth grader face. Screw this kid. So mad. I can’t even write about this, so mad.

Friday, January 14, 2011
Today was really weird, I had to hang out with Jake, mom thought it was a good idea, but it was kind of boring. Like, it was a Saturday, so he took me out to breakfast. We didn’t really talk that much. I really don’t know that much about him, just that he works in some office downtown, but like, I seriously don’t know anything else. I guess it wasn’t that bad though, we went to this breakfast place, it had really good pancakes. I’d be willing to go back again, they were pretty bomb. Yeah, Jake’s a little weird, he isn’t as bad as I thought he was, he seemed pretty nice. But, he kept on asking things about me, which was really annoying. After I hung out with Jake, I had to start working on my homework. I had some algebra work to do, which was super hard. I don’t even know why we need algebra anyways, isn’t it just letters instead of numbers, who even uses that! I mean, that’s something for like high schoolers, what is the point of teaching us this now, we don’t even understand any of it. I mean there are some many things you have to remember, and so many steps. Mr. Johnson is such a bad teacher, like he tries to explain something, and LITERALLY no one understands. That homework took like 45 minutes, that is way too long for homework. At least I didn’t have any english homework, now I can actually relax a little. I wonder what I am going to do for the rest of the day? Hmmm maybe I’ll just take a nap or do something.

Saturday, January 15, 2011
I took a really good nap yesterday, haha, I finally got to open the new Halo game that I haven’t had time to play. It is sooo sick, the graphics are awesome. Yeah, yesterday was a pretty good day. I ended up staying up way past my bedtime, and I went to bed at midnight. I slept in until 11 today, that felt good. So Jake offered to take me to that new laser tag place, the one of the corner of Elton and Jasper. I’m not sure if I should go or not, maybe I’ll go, I don’t really have anything to do. Yeah I think I’ll go. Maybe I’ll ask if I can invite a friend. James and I have really been wanting to go, maybe Jake will take us both. I’m actually looking forward to this. That place look pretty legit, like they supposedly have a really sick maze and everything to play in. Yeah, I just hope he doesn’t take Cameron with us too, he is so annoying. And he will probably just get lost inside and then we will have to try and find him. I just won’t bring up that option and maybe he won’t come up with  the idea.
WOW that was crazy! Jake is a beast at laser tag. Yeah, that was pretty cool.

Sunday, January 16, 2011
Why does it have to be a monday! I don’t want to go to school today, I hate all of my teachers. I really hope today isn’t boring.
SOOO, yeah today was like super boring. My teachers just kept on talking and talking and talking, and nothing interesting. My spanish teacher did say something weird, but it didn’t really make sense, something about reality just a perception of the world, or something. I didn’t understand what he was trying to say, it was in spanish anyways. But honestly I feel so tired, PE was super hard today. They made us run the mile, can you believe it, the mile. That’s like forever! When are we ever going to need to run a mile under nine minutes. There isn’t any point, aren’t we supposed to take our time and not rush things, stop and smell the roses, stuff like that. But then my PE teacher goes and makes us run like  laps around the field. I think I’m going to try and get some more sleep.

Monday, January 17, 2011
Heh, so I’ve noticed that mom hasn’t been asking me about my journal lately. That’s pretty funny, Well yeah, this is probably my last entry, sorry mom, but that’s what you get for not reminding me about this, I guess I just forgot to keep on writing. GG mom.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013
So hmm, it’s actually been quite a while since I’ve written something like this. I guess I didn’t really use this journal that much. But yeah, I guess I just feel like I need to write some things down that have been on my mind. So yeah, Jake proposed to mom the other day. I guess I really don’t have any words for it. I’m really happy for mom, but I’m not sure if I’m ready for a change. I don’t have anything against Jake, like he is a great guy, but I just cannot imagine anyone else replacing dad. It’s been nine years since he passed on. I guess I never really thought that someone might try to replace him. I honestly don’t remember much about him, mom says that he was a great guy, I didn’t really get a chance to spend time with him. He was always out on patrol and so he would leave before I woke up, and would come home after I was in bed. There were only those few days where he didn’t have to be on duty when he would be able to spend time with me. But in reality, our lives never really overlapped. So everything right now is a daze, considering that Jake would be my stepdad and everything. But you know, I don’t know if I mind all that much, Jake is a great guy. I guess if things work out, they work out, I honestly just want the best for mom.

Monday, May 20, 2014
So yeah, this week has been hectic, mom and Jake started planning out their wedding and everything. I haven’t really had that much time to write. School and band really take up a lot of my time. Yeah I guess I don’t really have that much time left to myself. Really I wish I could take some time to just relax and think. I remember I got into meditating a while back, but I never really got to embrace it. Maybe I will just take some time to sit and think everyday for ten minutes right when I get home. It’s weird to look back and remember how much time that I had. Even just the stupid things that I did. I really wish I knew that I didn’t really know what to do.
So yeah, today was boring. I didn’t really do that much. Sigh…

Thursday, May 23, 2014
So today I realized how weird some of my childhood was. Just like all of the shows and games I watched and played. Like Mario, you played as a plumber that doubled in size by eating a mushroom, and by somehow picking up a leaf, you could fly. And the Fire Flower, you could run into it, and somehow instantaneously change clothes and acquire the ability to shoot fireballs from your palms. Crazy right, all of those ridiculous “power-ups” that actually used to make sense. How could something so unrealistic make sense. Giant green pipes were used as teleportation devices, I mean come on! And don’t even get me started on the plot. I mean, a giant, green, probably mutant, spiky shelled turtle that somehow is enamored with a princess, manages to kidnap the princess, and the only person capable of rescuing said princess is the plumber. A plumber, yes the guy that is supposed to fix pipes is going to save the day, sounds like a Ratatouille-esque trope, “anyone can save the princess”. How did I even manage to have the patience, or even the attention span, to put up with the repetition. Every single time you defeated a castle’s boss, you were greeted by a stupid little mushroom man who always said, “Thank you Mario! But our princess is in another castle!” Don’t even get me started on Pokemon, that stuff was crazy! Like you enslave creatures and make them battle each other until they pass out. Like, that is illegal! That’s like animal cruelty on steroids. Seriously, we encouraged the youth to capture pets and travel the world along with other teenagers without parent guidance and make them defy criminal organizations with this “pets”. And the lack of creativity in their names! Red and Blue were the original names of the characters! Perhaps the ridiculousness of the entirety didn’t even matter, or maybe it was that very thing that drew us in. Were we really too naive to realize the awfulness of enslaving creatures for entertainment and battle… I guess we were.

Monday, October 20, 2014
SOOOOO, yeah, I really don’t know what I am doing right now. I think I’m having one of those existential crises. I think I used to have these when I was a kid. Like I would just sit in a corner and wonder why I was alive. Yeah, like why wasn’t I some sentient pixel or some animal. Like what made me, Me? Who was I really, why was I so much different than everyone else. I would ask myself what I was really seeing, was I just dreaming? Or was I living? If I stared at one spot enough, i would see red, green, and blue, and wonder what it was, perhaps I should have lived in a video game. I would notice how in the shift between video tapes to DVD’s, the length of blackness between scenes would shorten, until nothingness. And then I would wonder, was that me? Was I just like the blackness, just emptiness, that was waiting to disappear as life progressed around me? Everything before and after me had and will matter, but I was in between, nothing, empty, unwanted, insignificant, undesirable. Hmm, I don’t know why, but it just seemed weird, I didn’t have a purpose, no purpose in life. I just thought, and contemplated, and really didn’t know what to do, and then I would just forget. Isn’t that awful, just questioning one’s existence, and then just ignoring it. Hmm, that led to a lot of problems later on I guess. Yeah, is that scary? Like I still don’t know what my purpose is, why do I exist? Just to live, and then die? Is that all there is to life? To make some eat, sleep, excrete, procreate, maybe accomplish something, and then die. That would be the end. What’s the average life expectancy for Americans? Like 75 years, 80 years? Maybe 85? Does it really matter, would it matter? All we would do is subject the earth to however many years of damage. Who even knows if there is a point to living. I guess there is, because we have been doing it for centuries. But it makes me wonder if there is anyone else who thinks this way. Am I alone in this mindset, am I really the only who thinks that life lacks meaning, or are there others who think the same way but don’t say so. I used to ask people if they had ever felt the way I had. Most of them hadn’t, but does that mean I am crazy? I hope I am not, that would be a sad existence. Are there others who feel like I do? I guess it doesn’t really matter…

I was home alone today. Yeah, kinda boring. Not much to do to entertain myself. You know that feeling when you don’t know what to do and you are really bored, but you don’t actually know what will make you feel not bored. Yeah that’s how I felt today. I probably should have taken some time out of my day to do my homework, oh well. That’s funny, like I would actually do homework, nice one! So yeah, not much else to say. Yup.

Thursday, October 23, 2014
So it’s almost November, maybe I’ll try doing NaNoWrimo, its this thing where you write a novel within the month of November. So I don’t really know what to write, let alone what my word goal should be. I’m not even sure if I will have the time. I mean, its so much to write. Hmm, what should be my writing goal, 15,000, 20,000, 25,000, 30,000, 35,000,40,000,45,000, or maybe even 50,000. What should I write about? Fiction, non-fiction, personal essays, memoirs, short stories… Maybe I’ll just try writing something random and hope it works XD.

Once upon a time… hmm, maybe, in a distant future, let’s think this out a little more, hmm what do I want it to be. Medieval sci-fi? Hm, I honestly don’t know. Oh how about a separate race of humanoids with super powers. Should I have the fourth wall broken or not? Hmm I’ll just try it and see how it work.

Hey there! You probably can’t see me, but I can see you. Wondering why? Well let’s start off with the introductions. My name is, well actually it’s not that important. But I certainly know your’s. I’m just like you, but also very different. Perhaps it may be hard for you regular homo-sapiens to understand, but I am from a different breed. Well sort of. Throughout the ages, there have been those like us, the elite, the special, those who are above the rest. None the same, but special in their own way. Each has either risen or fall to the extremes of humanity. Some that come to mind are Mahatma Ghandi, Nelson Mandela,  Adolf Hitler, George Washington, Fidel Castro, Martin Luther King Jr., Abraham Lincoln, Mao Zedong, Napoleon Bonaparte, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Julius Ceasar, Winston Churchill and Alexander the Great, to name a few. But yes, I am one of these highly superior beings who have come to be despised as well as admired by humanity throughout the ages. So that brings our story to modern day, current time, so where and perhaps even when does my story begin. Well let me set the stage for you. Tokyo, year 2020, and the technological age is booming, and while society is blossoming, humanity is wilting. Crime, disease, suicide, all have risen in the past decade for various reasons. I am here, living in an apartment, a mere 20 year old. I have managed to survive through school, and due to family connections, I landed a job with the government. So let’s get into the more interesting part. I have the ability to see  the true emotions of others. Pretty cool isn’t it. Yeah I’m pretty awesome. Whenever I am in a jam, I can pretty much rely on my powers to get out of it, using my super high intelligence as well of course…

Sunday, October 26, 2014
Hmmm I don’t think this is I know working out, it’s interesting, but I don’t really know what to do  next. It could have been good, but I don’t think know what to do with it. Hmmm, Jack and Jill versus aliens? Or maybe a boy whose best friend becomes a werewolf. Maybe just a novel about a boy with cancer, like The Fault in Our Stars but without romance and probably more boring. But nothing is perfect. But where would I even get the information, internet here I come.
But what would the setting be and what would happen, would he die, would he live, would he be emotionally scarred and suffer from repercussions. Hmm I should think about this a little more. This is so frustrating.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014
So I woke up late today, and I was late to school. When I got to school, they locked all of the doors and I got a detention, isn’t that stupid. Just sitting there, waiting for nothing to happen, The I just waited and waited for  something to happen, but nothing happened… It was detention, I don’t really know what I should have expected or not, oh well! Time to write a story.
A cup of coffee, black, no sugar, a piece of toast, no butter, and a banana, peeled from the bottom. Bananas are what really fill me up in the mornings. Every morning, the same thing, a daily routine, repetitive, a cycle, monotonous, tedious, mundane, tiresome, humdrum, dreary, excessively boring. But what happens when that cycle breaks. What happens to us, those around us, who we are on the inside. The patterns of everyday life are easily taken for granted, sweeping us off our feet and carrying us off into the world that is normalness. But when we stop being normal, abnormal takes over, and from there, anything can happen. So what really did happen to me, what happened that broke the cycle. Let’s start with what my cycle is. Each and every day, the same story, wake up, wake up my wife and kids. Get the kids ready for school, take them to school, get ready for work, go to work, finish work, come home, eat dinner, tuck the kids in, and then later go to sleep. Everything was fine, life went on, I got to grow old with my wife, and I got to see my kids change and grow. But when you are stuck in your own state of normalness, you often don’t stop to think about the possibility of something strange happening, and it never occurred to me that one day my son would get cancer.
Hmm I should research this a little more.

Saturday, November 1, 2014
I honestly don’t really know what to write, like I’m only sixteen, I haven’t experienced anything like this before, but I guess I should keep on writing, I’m not going to hit my word goal if I don’t keep on writing.
I guess it really came to a shock to all of us, no one really saw it coming. My wife had felt that something there was something hard in his abdominal region earlier, but he had insisted that it had been because he was doing sit-ups, so we thought little of it. However, one day, me and my son were camping, he was a part of his local cub scout troop, Pack 77, and I was in charge, the Pack Leader. So we had just gone hiking, it was a hot day and the hike was a decent length, and when we returned my son just was not hungry. It was weird, you would think that a 10 year old boy would be hungry after hike three miles. But he barely nibbled on his grilled cheese before refusing to eat anymore. So naturally, as a father, I was concerned. Why was he not hungry, was there something wrong? And then I remember about the hard spot on his stomach. Two of the parents of some of the scouts who were on the trip happened to be doctors, so I decided to have then check my son. I told them about the hard spot, and they decided to see if there was anything wrong. So the first doctor brought my son over to one of the benches at the campsite, and had him lie down. And he began to feel his stomach, pressing gently on various places, and then his face tensed. He paused, he felt an area, he moved onto another, checked it, and then returned. He looked up at me and told me, “Something is not right, there is something here, that definitely should not be here. You should get this checked out, I’m not saying you need to go now, but you should go to your pediatrician as soon as possible.”

Sunday, November 2, 2014
I’m not sure if it really hit me yet, that there was something wrong with my son, something that was growing inside of him that I didn’t know of or about. It became a panic, perhaps if he had told me what I had wanted to hear, that nothing was wrong, things would have turned out much worse. I didn’t want to believe it, so I took my son to the second doctor. She and her family were at the beach relaxing, and so I took my son with me to go find her. When we finally found her, I asked her to check up on my son. She had him lie down on a beach towel, and to my horror, she confirmed my fears. It only took a few minutes for her to repeat to me that there was something wrong with my son. Only this time, she insisted that we leave the campsite as soon as possible and go straight to the hospital. She offered to help us get admitted into the emergency room faster, however, my wife happened to work for Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and so it was unnecessary. My son and I hurriedly packed up our tent and all of our belongings and we left. Perhaps it was because I didn’t want to deal with the shock, I didn’t even know how to comfort my son. He would ask me questions about what was going on, and it pained me to know that I didn’t have the answers, that I wouldn’t be able to fix whatever he was going through at the moment. It was when he asked if he had cancer that it really hit me, I had no idea what was going to happen. I didn’t know, isn’t that the most helpless feeling, not having the knowledge of what is going on, and having to live through that. Despite the amount of fear that I was experiencing, I cannot imagine my son’s fear. A ten-year-old boy, being told that there is some mysterious mass inside of him, that he did not know about for who knows how long.

Monday, November 3, 2014
Woah, this story kind of took off, surprised myself at what I thought of. I guess I don’t even really know what is inside of my own head. I guess I will just have to see where my story takes me.
I honestly did not really know what to do as I was sitting in the car, driving me and my son home. I called my wife to tell her that we had to come home early and that I would have to explain it later. I didn’t want to scare my son more that he already was. He already knew that having something growing inside of him was bad, he saw my father-in-law experience cancer, and he knew what it could do to someone. Well none of us really knew what it could do, we all just had a small understanding of what was had gone on with his grandfather. So we drove, it pained me to look into the backseat and see him, as he began to nod off. He looked so at peace, but I knew that he felt fear. That 90 minute drive passed by in an instant, perhaps it was because it all seemed too surreal to to believe. I just wanted the nightmare to be over, little did I know that it was just beginning.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014
Hmm, I am not really sure what else to write about, I guess it might be okay for me to take a day off and think about what to write. I guess I am just not really sure what to write about. But what should I talk about today. I guess it just doesn’t feel right to just sit here and not write when I have free time. Isn’t that strange though, that I actually have free time. Even with school being so busy, I somehow still manage to carve out the time to write, and write, and write some more. What should I examine in my life. Do I really need to examine my own life, what is the importance? If I do not reevaluate myself, where can I grow? How many people actually have taken the time out in their daily lives to actually sit and think? How many people spend time meditating?. Even for just five minutes a day, thinking, contemplating about life. I have been really grateful for being able to afford the time to take out of each day to do this journal, it’s actually kind of amazing being able to look back at even  the minimal amounts of info that I have in this tiny little book. But, it’s been interesting even looking at the wall. I was reminiscing, remembering myself being so immature, and even as I continue to write, I am sure I will look back and see immaturity in the things I am writing about. Isn’t that interesting, the changing perspective that comes with the progression of time. But perhaps that is a discussion for another time, another place, when I have the time to actually reflect on what is going on.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014
So now that I got a chance to take a break for a little while, I think I am going to continue my story.
The rest of that night was a blur. I sat waiting at home in disbelief and fear as my wife took my son over to the hospital to be checked up. I guess everything just came too fast for me to comprehend. As I sat there, I got the call from my wife, telling me that I would need to meet her at the hospital to be there with my son. I knew that my son was suffering, every 15 minutes, it seemed like a nurse would come in and take a blood sample. Then they told him that he needed to fast in order to get a CT scan in order to check and see what was going on inside. They told him he would have to fast, and that he could only drink water while waiting for the scan to proceed. It was frustrating, the procedure was delayed time after time, and I was forced to see my son suffer as he was continually forced to go without eating.

Thursday, November 6, 2014
Hmm it does not seem like I am not keeping up with the my word count goals, hmmm I guess I should try to figure out a way to write more productively. I guess for now I will just focus on writing for a solid amount of time and just force myself to write those words.
We remained in the Urgent Care Ward for another 48 hours until my son was finally able to get his CT scan. That Monday night, to my disappoint, the results of the scan only confirmed my fear, there was a large mass attached to his liver. In order to prepare to effectively administer the anesthesia, they had to insert a Peripherally Inserted Central Catheter, also known as a PIC line. This would be used to provide intravenous access to the doctors. The original plan was to insert the line starting at one of the veins near the elbow, however the doctors encountered several complications. They decided to begin the painful procedure without giving my son any anesthesia, and due to the fact that he had been fasting for the past several days, he was constantly dehydrated. The entire process involved threading a tube, with a stiff, removable lining, up the vein and closer to the heart. In order to reduce the pain, the staff member attempts to find the optimal vein to insert in, essentially the largest vein available. The problem was that since my son was dehydrated, all of his veins were significantly smaller due to the lack of water and when the staff attempted to insert the line, my son had to experience excruciating pain. I sat next to my son, held his hand, and read a book to him in order to try and ease some of the pain, however, after several attempts, and my sons spat profuse screams of pain, they decided that they would have to put him under in order to establish the PIC line. The next day they had to insert an IV line, or Intravenous Line in his hand in order to give him the anesthesia needed to knock him out so that they could insert the PIC line properly. When he finally came out, it was hard to realize that there was essentially a piece of plastic sticking out his arm that follow his arm all the way to his heart. I am not sure if I was just in shock, but I did not actually realize at the time that that piece of plastic would be there for the next six months. The next 24 hours went by as a blur. My family sat together by his hospital bed that night, and we spent time together in the midst of all of the chaos. We tried not to focus on the surgery that was scheduled for the next morning. I am not sure if we to just ignored what was inevitable, but perhaps it was the fear that made us do it. The next day came like a flash, and before I knew it, we were already in the waiting room. We sat there, and the next six hours were some of the longest I have ever felt. Not knowing the fate of my son, whether or not there would be any complications, or whether the surgery would be successful, When those six hours finally passed, I got to see my son, and despite the fact that he had a random fit of rage, I was just happy to see that he was ok. It was tough to see the state he was in though, he had his PIC line in his arm, an IV in his hand, and a tube that was inserted during the surgery that went from his nose down into his throat. The next couple of days were spent in the recovery ward, waiting for my son to recover after his surgery. It was a sad state to see him in, bedridden and wrapped in bandages around his stomach. He barely had the strength to sit up by himself and they constantly had to check the strength of his lungs by using a small contraption that measured the amount of air that he was able to blow into it. It was weird seeing him crawl back from the near-abyss. We saw him slowly regain his strength to walk over the next week. We would meet some of the kindest people I have ever met during that time, one of the nurses, Daniel, stood out among the rest. He had just been hired by the hospital and he was a devout USC fan, like me, so he immediately asked my son about USC when he saw the USC blanket that I had gotten him to keep him warm. It was amazing to see a complete stranger have such compassion, sympathy, and  concern for my son, whom he had just met. Perhaps it was strange that within the next year he would move hospitals, denying us the chance to visit him later after the entire ordeal was over.

Friday, November 7, 2014
Perhaps there is a problem when you are up at three in the morning, doing math homework and wondering why the heck you are alive. I know I said this already, but its just one of those things that since you can never really understand it, whenever the thought of it comes up, you just get super confused. I mean honestly, I’ve heard some pretty existential stuff, like, “what if oxygen was just making us all hallucinate, and so when we die, and when we stop breathing,the hallucination finally ends.” Following along with that was a theory that, “our ‘drugs’ allow us to see what is really going on, which is why the government has control over them, because they don’t want the public to know what is actually going on.” Some pretty crazy stuff right? I mean yeah, I was up last night, and I kept on thinking that there was a man running at me with a knife, he would appear in my peripheral vision and then when I would look directly in that direction, it would be like a shadow disappearing, no trace, no indication of anything being within 10 feet from me, but every five or so minutes, if I wasn’t drifting off into sleep, I would see this image, and I would freak out. So yeah, but that reminds me of when I pulled that all-nighter, you know it was so weird. Like it felt like I had so much more time to use, I felt like I could get so much done, and I actually didn’t. The amount of sheer determination and willpower that we posses amazes me. The thing that dumbfounds me is the lack of usage of that willpower. In this self-centered world, we have become consumed and sucked into the idea that we are the center of the universe and that we have power over everything. Although on the flip-side, there are also those that always act like the victim, and they let others take care of their problems  or they just ignore them and try to get by. That is another problem, people just don’t show any emotion, at least for guys. Emotions are very powerful in fact, we often let our emotions control us. Acting out in anger or rage or feeling defenseless whenever we experience fear or need. We are often scared of whatever emotions are inside of us, I mean, emotions are painful, they can be controlling. They can take over and control our lives from the inside and we might never be able to get the control back, so it would make sense to stuff these “dangerous” things away into the corners of our heart. So what is better, to allow ourselves to experience and utilize our emotions or do we silently tuck away them away never to see them again and become emotionally deprived. What is the choice that we should pick, what is the best choice?  If we allow ourselves to experience the full range of the emotional spectrum, we can easily be subjected  to pain, strife and depression. It is very easy for us to get hurt in this gigantic world of hate. However on the flip side, those who choose to not deal with  emotion tend to to not get rid of their emotions, but rather they bottle up their emotions constantly, over and over, until one day, the entire thing explodes. What is better? Is it better to face the possibility of pain rather than denying the undeniable fact that the emotions kept inside alter who we are and will inevitably come back to haunt us? Of course it is better, but we choose the worse option anyways, for who knows what reason. Perhaps it was a childhood experience or a traumatizing tragedy. Anything that may have caused us to choose hiding away our emotions is always somewhat justified, but the real question is, what price do we pay for ignoring our emotions?

Saturday, November 8, 2014
Perhaps we really are just counting the days to our deaths. Have I found my purpose in life? Each person goes through their life, they their time on this Earth, and for what? What do we live for, do we just live just to die. It seems like we spend the majority of our childhood and young adulthood in school, being young, stupid, foolish, and ignorant. We almost waste the first 28 years of our life trying to “live it up” and “YOLO it” without any regard for the future, believing that we are invincible. The rest of our 47 years left are spent working. Most of us taking a nine to five job, working five days a week. But what do we really accomplish, perhaps you create something, or you better society, but in the end, when you die, that’s it. There is nothing that you can do to change that fact, whatever impact that you have on the Earth may never really matter to you when you are dead. Like even just imagining how much time is spent on media is astounding. The average 11-14 year old spends 9 hours a day in front of a screen

Sunday, November 9, 2014
I think I am just going to get into the story today.
Near the end of my son’s recovery, our fears were confirmed yet again. The doctor came in one day and gave us the harsh news. He told us that my son had cancer. It just crushed me, it devastated my family. We were shocked, it did not seem real. We sat there, and I’m not sure if it really hit my son, he just sat there and nodded. He knew what cancer was and the danger that it presented, but for some reason he just sat there calmly. When  the doctor asked us if we had any questions, we literally had a thousand questions that we wanted answered. But we wanted to see if my son had questions, we chose to ask the doctor questions in private. My son had no questions, he had complete trust in his family and his doctor. It was scary and encouraging, to see a 10 year old boy who was willing to entrust his life in someone else’s hands. He recognized that there was little that he could do and that by listening and following directions and advice, the quickest recovery would come. So we had a decision to make, to either immediately start the chemotherapy treatment or allow my son to enjoy Thanksgiving and start his treatment in  December. My son chose the latter, and so he got to be with my family on Thanksgiving with all of his aunts, uncles, grandparents, and cousins. My relatives had so many questions for us but I asked them to simply just let him be and then we could talk later when the situation was less celebratory. My son go begin his chemotherapy four days later. By that time, most of our family and friends knew of his situation. My wife and I were working with the school trying to figure out how to continue my son’s education, so that he would not be held back a grade. The chemotherapy cycle was simple yet crippling. He would go through a week of chemotherapy treatments, via PIC line, and then he would spend the next two weeks recovering, either in the hospital or at home, depending on how he was feeling. His first cycle of chemotherapy came as a rough start. One of his friends had given us a canister of caramel popcorn and his friend had been exhibiting some of the symptoms of the stomach flu. On his first day, they began pumping the first of the two varieties of chemotherapy that they were going to give him. They attached the bag of red fluid to the PIC line in his arm, and so began his suffering. That night, he was constantly nauseated. He would spend the entirety of the next two weeks constantly feeling dehydrated and nauseated due to the fact that the chemotherapy is actually poison. There are two main ways of dealing with cancer. Ideally all cancer patients would initially start by removing  the tumor, if there is one, through surgery. The next step in the process would be to start chemotherapy treatment or radiation. Chemotherapy treatment is where the doctors administer a type of non-lethal poison that kills the cancer cells, however there is currently no way of making the poison target the cancer cells specifically, so they end up killing many of the useful cells. The other method is radiation, where the doctors use high energy particles or waves to destroy or damage the cancer cells. Each method has its own harmful side effects, and depending on the type of cancer and progression of cancer, either method may be used, or even both if the situation is dire enough. My son was lucky, we were able to catch the cancer early, so he only needed chemotherapy. But anyways, he was throwing up all night, despite not having eaten or or drank anything. He eventually began to vomit bile, the acid held inside of the liver. But he endured the night. That first cycle was probably the hardest, he was not able to eat or drink anything consistently, he just had to eat and hope that it would not come back up. Each time he would come home, he would be bedridden. He would sit upright in his bed and watch the television. He would memorize all of the commercials. Everything was committed to memory, whether it was a line from a television show or just the scheduled times for each show. He knew it all, because he had the time to learn it all, and that was what made the time go by. He was rarely healthy enough to have visitors. A nurse would come in once a week to check up on him. And we would have to give him a shot of white blood cells weekly as well. He was constantly on anti-bacterials and supplements. He had to take a foul tasting substance called fluconazole, an antifungal that helped prevent fungal infections, to which he was very susceptible to, due to the chemotherapy. His temperature would be taken daily to make sure that his health was not declining and he was constantly hooked up to an IV, where water mixed with glucose was administered to him intravenously through his PIC line. That PIC line had to be flushed out every day. Each day, a supplement would be given through the PIC line, and then it would have to be flushed out using a syringe of saline that went directly into the PIC line. There was always the fear that he would get sick, since he had a lack of white blood cells. After the first cycle of three weeks, he went back into the hospital for his second cycle. That day was December 24, 2008, Christmas Eve. That was the price he would have to pay, he wanted to be able to spend at least one more holiday with family while at least being semi-normal, and that was Thanksgiving. He could not have waited longer, or else he would have risked his own health and wellbeing. So he was stuck in the hospital during Christmas. I decided that I would stay with him, I sat there as he slept. They were in the middle of giving him a dosage of chemotherapy. It is weird is it not, that on Christmas Eve, I was watching poison being given to my son. The next day, he was sitting in his bed recovering, and a kind volunteer dressed as Santa Claus and gave all of the children, toys, books, and all other assortments of entertainment. My son, being 10, was slightly less enthusiastic about the coloring books, but nonetheless, he accepted. The most probable reason being that he had nothing else to do. All he did all day was watch television and play on his handheld video game, a change in pace was what he needed. Later during that cycle, He would later be devastated by his new appearance. As we finished shaving my son’s head, my youngest daughter, who was two at the time walked into the room. he was immediately scared of her older brother, whom she was not able to recognize without hair. He would later be reminded of the fact that he while he was stuck in bed, his friends in school had continued their lives. His class in school had waited to celebrate their winter break until there was an opportune time to have it when my son could come. But he wore a decided to wear a beanie to school, the prospect of allowing his friends seeing him without hair was too much of an embarrassment to even consider. At that party he was able to get back a little of his normal fifth grade life, but it was promptly yanked away when he realized how much that  he was missing out on. He had missed all of the activities, the projects, and the lessons. He seemed to not know how his friends were doing and he felt disconnected to them. He met one of the new kids, whom he did not know had even begun to attend his elementary school. He had to listen to all of the tales and stories that his friends had about what was happening during the school, who got in big trouble and who had done something really embarrassing. He was missing an essential part of his childhood and there was nothing he could do.

That next month, he began his tutoring. His second grade teacher, who had also had a tumor had reached out to my family in order to hang out with my son. He loved her when she taught him, and so it was great for her to support him when he was feeling down. She had originally offered tutor my son if no other tutor could be found. But eventually his current fifth grade teacher offered to tutor him. So he began to be tutored on a weekly basis. He would meet with his teacher/tutor once a week, and she would go over math, history, and science. The bare minimum of the state education standards. He kept up, but there was very little he could do in his time when he could actually focus and actually learn. When the time came around to assign all of the students their state for the “state project”. He decided to choose Washington, because our family had been there that summer because we had been visiting family. His teacher allowed him to modify his project because of the limited amounts of time he had. The next several months went by, vicious cycles, one after another, repetitive, each one taking its toll. Finally in March of that year, he finished his last cycle. The suffering was over, but he still had to deal with the aftermath. He would have to life with his scars and his suffering for the rest of his life. He would forever be reminded of the pain and suffering that he underwent. We went to checkups monthly to make sure he did not have a relapse of any sort. His appointments would eventually become more spaced out as the possibility of the cancer returning lessened. A few years later, he would be told that he would never be able to do any heavy weightlifting and that his heart had been impaired by the chemotherapy. His heart was not able to function as efficiently as it should, and so every action that he did, if not proper, could increase his risk of heart failure at an earlier age. My son had been forced to meet the harsh reality that many others his age had never felt or experienced. He knew that death was real, death was imminent, that it was not to be trifled with.
Sigh, this was not enough words, I thought I would have been able to get more words out of a story like this. But I guess I just could not think of anything else to write. I mean, 30,000 words is a pretty hefty word count to achieve in a month, I still have other homework to do, so I do not really know what to do. Hmm what to do, what to do? I guess I do not really have a choice but give up, it is too late to try and come up with another thing, and it would not really be from me if I just tried to vomit words onto a page. I have better things to do and to write about. Yeah, I need to do my homework, yeah I should really get to work on my essay soon. But I do not really feel like working on it right now, maybe I will just do it tomorrow, typical teenage procrastination, that is a life skill right?

Monday, November 10, 2014
So let’s see, what was my prompt? Oh yeah, it was what do you think is the purpose of life?
Haha, I have a bunch of experience in this area. Well there is so much to talk about, but I think I will start off with a quick stream of consciousness writing. Time to just write, write, write, without any regard for quality or ideas.
So yeah, people often think of their purpose of life, however they never really determine what it is? Is that question not the quintessential question of life. I mean, whether or not you find yourself. I mean, who are we without our purpose? Can we truly find and discover ourselves without our purpose? Well I guess you, the teacher, already knew all of that, hopefully, I mean what would the purpose of this assignment be if it were not for that. Well I guess there is the whole, it is thought provoking so do it. But there are some things that I do not get about some homework assignments. I mean, I remember last year, the teacher would assign us an essay and require us to write at least three pages. I mean, it seems to me as if that is limiting our creativity. By giving us a minimum requirement for length, the teacher was exchanging quality for quantity, and when is that ever a good thing? When should we sacrifice all of the brilliance that is contained within our minds for the sake of three one-sided pages filled with ink? Is that a problem with our schooling systems? That is another thing, this Common Core that is beginning to take over the school systems across America. Common Core has begun to not only standardize education nationwide but also standardize people nationwide. Students will no longer be able to accel the way that they used to. They will be hindered by the rigid, dry cut, standards established by Common Core, and for what? Equality? No, equality is fine and dandy, but Common Core is not education equality, it is making clones of every single child from ages five to eighteen. What is even more puzzling is the way that education is now approached. Children are taught to be skeptical of everything, disregarding any premise of a fact. Students are taught to question and compare everything, effectively increasing their judgemental nature. There have often been pictures around the internet of the new “Common Core questions” that seem to confuse and befuddle even the smartest of minds. The questions are so poorly worded that it is a wonder that the children are even learning anything. How can the United States even hope to compete with some of the other world leaders if its education system is going down the drain? Perhaps we will just have to spend another trillion dollars on the military in order to raise the next generation of intellectually deficient children to become soldiers to intrude on other countries’ problems that we have absolutely no business in because we are the self-proclaimed policemen of the pacific. But I digress, so have I found my own purpose in life, most certainly not, I have spent many hours awake, staring at the ceiling, pondering what was to come, what has been, and what is now. What is now? Time is constantly moving, nothing we do can really be in the “now” because as soon as we do it, it instantly becomes the past. There is a time-frame that is variably considered as the “now” but truly, there is only the future and the past. Only what has been and what is to come. So what do we do with ourselves. In all actuality, is not everything a consequence of our instincts and natures? Is everything not already set in stone due to our past? Since the beginning of time, would it not make sense that everything has simply been a extremely long chain of reactions that will continue until the end of time? But what actually began the beginning of time? Was the Big Bang just spontaneous? Now I begin to question the Big Bang theory, where did that small, miniscule, microscopic, well you get the point, but where do scientist propose that the matter that ended up creating the universe originate from, and what made it explode? Is the universe just a cycle? Will there be a “Big Crunch” and if so, will the universe eventually reform through a second Big Bang” or are we just another iteration of the universe in a never ending cycle universes?Do people often take the time to ask themselves these questions? It seems confusing that in today’s self-centered American culture that people would not be willing to ask themselves questions. Interesting is it not, how self-centered and self-seeking America has become, or rather people in general, but America especially. Even examining some Nordic cultures today, their goal in life is to become educated, find a good job, maybe have a family, amass stuff, and then retire, and then pass on. Is that all there is to life? Can we truly enjoy life as it is? It seems to me that people are in a neverending pursuit of happiness. I mean there is nothing wrong with that according to the Declaration of Independence, basically every other important American Document that is plastered with this ideal. So people take this ideal of pursuing happiness, and they assume that that means to get as much stuff as possible, because for some reason, many people just assume that by getting more stuff , they will be happy? Where did this ideal originate? I was once told that there was a remote island, I cannot remember where, but the important part was that the inhabitant of said island had no accessible modern day technology, in fact, they had no electricity. In a survey of some sort, almost all of the inhabitants of this small island that were questioned said that they were happy and satisfied with the way that their lives were at the time. They were content without many of the modern day possessions that would by today’s standards would elicit happiness. So when they were finally provided with some of today’s normal amenities like electricity and access to the internet, some time later, when they were again questioned, the people of the island responded that they were less satisfied with their lives, possibly because they had  seen everything that they had not possessed. So what happened? Perhaps it was jealousy that overtook them but it doesn’t really matter does it? Consumerism has overtaken the world, it is an infectious feeling that has been destroying the happiness of the world. So if our purpose in life is not to “amass stuff” what is our purpose? Well to each his own belief and to each his own purpose. But how can we discover it? Do most adults even know their own purposes in life? It is of utmost importance that an effective method of discovering one’s purpose is found. It is my own belief that without a purpose, it can be easy to slip into depression, a terrible  state of being that claims and has already claims many lives. Well I am not sure if I have gotten any closer to actually answering the prompt, well oh well, I will figure something out eventually.

Thursday, November 13, 2014
So let’s see what happened today, nothing much really, I actually slept in really late because I spent so much time writing last night. Oops. Haha, oh well, sometimes you have to pay a price to get your creative juices flowing, am I right? I mean, sleep is just an “if you have time” kind of thing. I mean, that’s what school implies right? Gee, isn’t that stupid. School promoting sleep deprivation, crazy right? Well it’s true, with all of the homework, projects, extracurriculars that are expected or else you aren’t considered competitive in the college game, they all promote sleep deprivation. They encourage students to just disregard themselves just so that they can have even a slight chance at going to a good college. Is that what we should be promoting? These students are pushing themselves far beyond their limits, and for what? In China and Japan, where school is extremely rigorous, far more rigorous, the number of student suicides is on the rise. Sure, they have become more educated, but for what? They stress out kids and push them, for what? What is the point of taking away some of the most important developmental years in a human’s life and just cramming them with information and stressing them out beyond belief. So is there a solution to be found? Honestly I have no idea, all I know is that if the way that things are progressing, we will have a surplus in technology and an increasing necessity for emotional support.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014
So Thanksgiving is coming right around the corner isn’t it. Man time flies by so fast, it feels like just yesterday that school started and we are already almost three months in. But I suppose some people do not find Thanksgiving as important as the activities that occur on the proceeding day which have somehow managed to creep and crawl into the festivities of Thanksgiving that should be reserved for family, friends, and well, thanksgiving. But for some reason, large companies have begun to think that it is ok for them to just allow for stores to open on Thanksgiving. This takes time away from the familial gatherings that millions across the United States should be celebrating. Employees are working in stores and people are taking time out to go shopping, all for “a great deal”. But what is it that makes so many people think that this commercial action ok? Does consumerism have that much control over us? If it does, what are we to become? We are being sucked into the claws of the big businesses. Perhaps it does not bother them to trash the tradition of Thanksgiving with what some are now calling “Black Thursday”, but why have we become complacent when dealing with something like this? Should we just give our wallets and bank account information to big businesses now and just stop celebrating Thanksgiving all together? There has to be a breaking point. Black Friday used to be a way for stores to break out of their financial shortcomings and start their holiday season with black ink on their financial statements, basically a way for businesses to start the holiday season with some actual earnings by providing some extremely lucrative deals for the consumers. But these irresistible deals are opposing a long standing American tradition and holiday. Who will win? Will we begin to realize that we are losing an integral part of the “American Culture” or are we just going to let this “Black Thursday” slip by and allow for the “American Culture” become synonymous with consumerism. So what is the next step? Well that is up to us I guess, is it not? I mean, who else can stop this commercial revolution that started only a couple years ago but the consumers? Sigh, what is there for us to do, are we really just hopeless? I mean I honestly cannot think of anything that can stop something like this from happening. I mean, I guess really bringing people’s attention to this growing problem, just basically knocking some sense into them. I mean my dad already got his black friday shopping done even before Thanksgiving, and then there is Cyber Monday that extends the shopping craziness to online deals, but I guess Cyber Monday maybe irrelevant just because even now a lot of Black Friday, Black Thursday or whatever you are going to call it, well basically a lot of their deals are already online. But back to consumerism, do we really get sucked into this growing epidemic that is sweeping across first-world countries?  I mean, it is quite obvious that we are beginning to become more and more obsessed with the new and the “cool”. We have adopted this “gotta have it” attitude that is breeding dissatisfaction and ingratitude. There are some crazy stories about people just arguing and fighting over a good deal. I mean there were some crazy things people did to try and get ahold of some of those Walmart deals. Tales of pepper spray and in-store brawls. Thankfully some workers have had some sense when it come to things like this. Apparently Walmart workers in six states are planning on striking on Black Friday. Too bad the motive was only for higher wages as opposed to more appropriate store hours on holidays. If only people realized that some things are more important than money.

Thursday, November 20, 2014
So social media, it seems to me that people are just obsessed with it while others want nothing to do with it. So let’s discuss the obsession with it first. Well, there are people who spend hours of their day, every day, scrolling through their news feed and looking at what’s up and what’s happening. So people have immersed themselves in this realm that is social media. It is often astounding to realize that most people have more “Facebook Friends” than actual friends. This idea that communicating through a screen, through instant messages, emails, text messages, will create growth in a healthy relationship. I wonder why people think this? A relationship without actual real life conversation, is hopelessly doomed. Because if the basis of the relationship is based off emotionless words of text on some lighted screen. Oh but wait, emojis show emotion, yeah right. Those do not do squat. The real connotations of words are easily misinterpreted. But why have we adopted this obsession where we are drawn to social media like flies to a bright light. We have been consumed by this idea that we are the center of the world and social media fosters this idea. The amount of “selfies” that have been taken is astounding. Why do we do this? Are we that concerned, that we just the need to post every single thing about every aspect of our lives either revealing the entirety of our lives or painting a false picture of our lives to put on display for others to see, and so that they would believe that we our lives are that perfect when the most often reality is that our lives are so screwed up that we are trying to convince ourselves and those around us that our lives are perfect. Wow, instead of putting all of that effort into posting what’s what, or rather anything that will either get us to pity points or to have the lime light shine on us for that little moment, up until we post that next thing. Looking at Twitter, showcasing aspects of our “normal lives’ or just following celebrities to get a glimpse of what their lives are like. Social media has a tight grip on youth today, absorbing their time and efforts and producing egotistic, emotionally depraved humans that think that nothing is wrong with their lives because they are supported by the millions of others, and the hundreds of Facebook “friends” or “followers”. Why do we not believe the fact that there are harsh realities in the world? Sigh, just another problem in the world that people are trying to ignore. There is also the flipside where people just avoid social media. Now do not get me wrong, there is nothing inherently wrong with social media. It is a useful tool that can provide a way for people to connect with others when they cannot physically meet. However, when that privilege is abused, we become easily consumed.

Saturday, November 22, 2014
Technology, anything that can be used to make a task simpler. There is a large difference between modern day technology and that of the past. Technology has been what separates us from the primitive. But like social media, we have become immersed in technology. something that is supposed to help us but can actually prevent us from developing. We have become so dependent on technology that some of our skills are being replaced by the abilities of machines. But even looking at the large amount of smart phones in American culture, it is evident that they are creeping into the family life. Even within my own family gatherings, one look and it is almost a guarantee that everyone over the age of 13 will be on their smart phone. But seriously, handheld technology is putting the internet at the fingertips of the youth. It is very easy for people to become sucked into the internet. People spend hours a day on their computers surfing the web. It becomes so easy for people to procrastinate when internet is there as a distraction. Many teenagers just spend hours of their day disregarding homework in order to watch television, search the web, or go on social media. Even examining those younger than 13, young children are beginning to spend more and more time playing video games on handheld devices or on cell phones. My little brother literally spends hours of his day playing on his iPhone, which have become so available in America these days. I remember when I was in fifth grade, it was a big deal when someone got an iPhone. Actually, people had cell phones in fifth grade! That’s insane, what would a fifth grader do to ever need a cell phone. I mean, there is literally no reason a fifth grader should have a cell phone. And the ingratitude in America I have seen these days annoys the heck out of me! I remember hearing a sixth grader complaining about her phone, you know what she said? She said, “Jeez my parents are so stupid, they got me a phone that does not even have internet connection, they are so retarded!” This little girl, oh my gosh, I wanted to punch this little brat. She was so ungrateful for something that is a privilege. She had no reason for even having a phone, yet she had the nerve to trash talk her parents behind their backs over something that should have never been given to her in the first place, and based on the way that she was acting, something that should be taken away immediately. I mean the amount of sass, backtalk, and disrespect that is present in today’s society is astounding and horrifying.

Sunday, November 23, 2014
So I have been ranting a lot lately and I think that is something that I need to adress for myself to be able to accept what I am doing. I guess you could say that I have a lot of negativity that is backed up in my heart and mind. It is very sad, the fact that I have all of this lack of appreciation for the world as the way it is. I feel a little sad about the way that I view the world. Why is it that I am so cynical? Have I just lost hope on our society as it is? Is that not sad that I have such little faith in the people today? I feel kind of depressed that I cannot find some good in the things that are relevant today in America. But am I the only one who thinks that way? I feel that there are others that think away the same way as I do, and if not, they are the happy-go-lucky, no care in the world people. Maybe I am being subjective, but I guess that is the way that I think, is there  a way for me to change my state of mind? Well I have no idea, so I guess I will just have to live with it no and so I think I will keep on trying to show people the error in their ways and maybe one day someone will show me the brighter side of people.

Monday, November 24, 2014
So I am on Thanksgiving break, just thought I might clarify that. So I am actually at the beach right now. It is actually very calming. The sun is in my face, I am listening to music and the songs blend together with the peaceful white noise of the waves that creates a very calming atmosphere for me. It is very relaxing to just sit here and admire some nature. Too bad there are so many man-made structures everywhere. I look out onto the ocean and I see giant cargo ships out in the distance. And I see structures that appear to be oil rigs, but I actually have no idea what they are. Then the beaches have the giant metal lifeguarding posts, which I guess are not that bad. But when you really think about it, in California these beaches are not true beaches. With real beaches there is the ocean then there is the sand and then there is greenery. In California, the majority of the beaches consist of ocean, sand, and concrete. It is kind of sand that we are not experiencing what a true beach should be. I look at the sand and I see trash strewn everywhere. My little brother exclaimed, “I buried a pen!” And to my confusion to his statement, I asked if he had taken one of my pens and put it in the sand. But when I walked over, I discovered that it was just some random pen that someone had just left on the beach. Why is it that people feel that they can just leave trash on the beaches, let alone anywhere else? Does it just seem easier to not walk to 20 feet over to one of the large trash cans placed on the beach? It is a shame that so much of nature has been contaminated by human creations. Take a look at the rainforests that were being cut down however many years ago. I am actually not sure if that is still going on or not, but I remember that it was a big deal when I was in fifth grade or something. Or was it perhaps that they only teach stuff like that to fifth graders and then no one else is ever obligated to teach about it again. Well that I have no idea about, but it seems like the problem has not disappeared, as if it has been solved. However, there is still a lot of work to be done, whether it is stopping the deforestation or trying to salvage what is left of the forests in order to try to restore them to their former glory. I remember that really big oil spill back in like 2009 or 2010. Man is it weird that I do not even know when something so devastating happened. But anyways, I remember being in summer school and I was in a class called World News, or something like that. But that was what we ended up talking about for a majority of the class, how BP or British Petroleum had screwed up and was trying to fix what they had done wrong. The results were terrible; it polluted the waters and devastated the marine life.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014
Dang, I really need to start studying for my SAT. Sigh, all of my friends have already taken it once before, and they got insane scores. Like I seriously feel bad about what I have been getting on my mock SAT’s. I mean, I have one friend who got a 2390, jeez. I know this guy is smart and everything, but seriously! Well people are always telling me, well it is just a test, and you know, it does not really count for all that much on your college applications. Yeah sure, but when deciding between a person who has a 2000 and someone who has a 2390, the college is going to pick the guy with the higher score, I mean, you have got to know that that is going to happen. Any other conclusion would be me just kidding myself. Sigh, I guess there are just some things that you have to accept are going to happen. As much as I want to do better, it just seems that I have hit a wall with this entire thing. It is just so frustrating to think that one test may decide whether or not you get into college or whether or not the test actually affected the decision or not. You see, one thing that I hate is not knowing something. That is literally the thing I hate the most. That is the reason why I never plan on going into the medical field. Not being able to know whether something that you did was the absolute best decision. I mean there are simple things where you have simple solutions. But what if you mess up, what if you think that something is minor when it turns out to be a really serious matter in a second opinion? I mean that responsibility on its own is enough of a turn off for me. I do not want someone to willingly entrust their life in  my hands, if the situation comes down to it, I will not try to throw someone’s life away, obviously, but the fact that people would be entrusting their health and wellbeing in me daily would be too much stress for me to handle. Imagine if I had a patient with a serious condition, so I authorize a specific treatment. And let’s say that that specific treatment had ended up saving the patient’s life, but also had some serious side effects. For me, I would be stressing day and night, wondering if there was a better solution. What if I had given the patient the worst possible choice that would have still saved his or her life? What if I gave that person the worst circumstances possible? Or what if I gave that person the best circumstances possible and I had been able to give that person the best possible solution? I know that both options are extremes of the spectrum, but the fact that those outcomes are distinct possibilities scares me to death. Honestly that is why I prefer math and science over English because I enjoy knowing whether I am right or wrong, I do not like the idea that there is no right or wrong, and that there s always room for improvement, because if there is always room for improvement in, let’s say the medical field, there is always a better option, which would mean that I would be constantly failing to provide the best for my patients, and to me that would mean that I am a failure to myself and my patients. I seriously like cold, hard facts much more than ambiguity. So yeah, I mean, math, physics, chemistry, those things are almost all exact, except for the estimations, and the uncertainty principles and all that, but for the most part, those things are exact, which I like. If I screw up on a math problem, I will eventually know that I screwed up, unlike an English paper where you can never be perfect, and that you will always need to improve. For me, I might just be too lazy to put in the effort to improve, well at least in the field of English. I mean, it can seem like such a pain to go back and read something you already wrote once before. I already wrote it once, and now I have to go back, read it, and then fix things that I found wrong, the problem with me is that I take my answers and I feel too lazy to double check their validity. So that screws me over on tests, but sticking with the English paper theme, I get too lazy to accept that there are some serious fallacies or breaks in logic in my papers. Laziness is such a dangerous trap isn’t it. Sigh I wish I was more disciplined. Then I would be able to actually get more than 5 hours of sleep a night, but alas, I never learn my lesson and always end up going to sleep past 2 in the morning. It is a sad and hollow existence, seldom getting the required amount of sleep necessary for physical, emotional, and mental growth. Oh well, there is nothing I can do about it now, I think my work ethic has already been set in stone. I have been this way since the seventh grade, so I guess I might be like this for the rest of my life, but I sure hope not. Man, these journal entries have sure gotten really random recently, it just seems like it is really easy for me to just go off on a tangent and talk. I mean, I am not sure if this journal thing is helping me express some of the more random thoughts inside of my mind. Being able to write things down has really given me a chance to examine myself and the unique way that I think and the way that I view the world that is completely different than everyone else.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014
So I was sitting in the shower today and I was just thinking, what if we were not able to see our own faces? Like, we would  be able to see other people ,but we just would not be able to actually see the way that we look. How much different would society be? Well I was thinking that if we could not see how we looked by ourselves, the things that people said would have a lot more weight. The only way to know if you had good looks or not would be from the opinions of others that are expressed to you, otherwise you would just be left in the dark about how you look. But let’s say that we actually could not talk about how people looked and we were not able to see ourselves. I guess that could easily turn south because people would treat each other based on looks. But that is what we do right now, that is our first impression, the way that somebody looks. It is often the first impression that determines the fate of a relationship. Sadly the first impression is most often solely based off of outward appearance. Why is it that we are so obsessed with the outside of people, when it is really the inside that really matters. The inside of a person, their character, their thoughts, opinions, motives are what should be the first impression, because someone is only truly rotten if their insides are rotten. Any opinion of someone before getting to know someone should be maintained as a blank slate. It seems unfair that people who seem to be born with better looks are often the ones that are more well received in society while those “cursed” to live a life without aesthetic features are doomed to be the social outcasts. But I guess there is not that much that I can actually do to change this. After all,  it is a basic thought process, I guess that is the reason why people are scared of monsters like Frankenstein, vampires, and the undead.

Saturday, November 29, 2014
So I have been really tired lately, I do not think that I am getting enough sleep. It has been really hard for me to be able to actually get some sleep. It seems ironic that despite always wanting to get more sleep whenever I actually have the chance to go to sleep early, I disregard that and end up staying up super late anyways. I know that sounds counterintuitive and stupid, which it is, but I end up doing it anyways. I find myself falling asleep whenever I try to work on my homework. Even while I am writing this, I am falling asleep. I can easily get distracted and I really do like going off on tangents, but I think I am starting to use up too much of my time that I should really be spending on my studies. I think I might need to take a break from this journal thing for a little while.

Tuesday, July 16, 2019
So this is kind of difficult to talk about but it is something that I need to get off my chest. So I know that I have not written lately. Things just kind of got busy, too busy for me to continue writing, but now, things have kind of calmed down. Well not really, but I have not had my normal obligations. So I went to the hospital the other day because I had been having these intense headaches for about five straight days. At first I had thought that it was not much, but after it would not go away, I decided that it would be best if I went to get it checked out. So I went to the urgent care. There,I was given a shot by the doctors and I was also prescribed a pill that was supposed to help stop the headaches after the shot wore off. The shot worked and my headache went away. The next day, the shot wore off, and although I took the pills, the headache came back. It turns out that the pills did not work and so I had to go to the emergency room. There they ran several tests, though I actually had no idea what they were doing. The doctor opened the door slowly, with a grave look on his face. I picked up my gaze from my book as I heard the squeaking of his shoes on the tile floor of the hospital. He asked me if I had a minute to talk and said that it was important. At that point I knew that something was wrong, but I did not know how serious of a problem. So long story short, I had a deteriorating heart, and so the lack of circulation had been wreaking havoc all over my body. But I honestly did not know how to react to the news. The doctor told me that they did not know how much time was left, but that knew there was not much. So now there is a slight picture of where I am at right now. Just sitting in a hospital bed, knowing that my days are limited. Ironic is it not, that even though we already know that our days are limited, something that shortens our life-span terrifies us. Each and every life has a limited number of days, but some people fail to realize that, or rather  they would prefer to believe that their impending deaths are far off into the future, when in reality, tomorrow is never guaranteed. It is weird that people just seem to take the time that they are given for granted; People are always either living in the past or the future, it seems. People rarely ever enjoy the present. People are often caught up in what has already happened, obsessed with what has been and being dragged down by their own baggage. These people are unable to let go of what has happened and are either too bitter, or too enamoured with the past to look  and see what is happening right in front of them. The other group of people are those that always have their gazes set on the future. These people are obsessed with progress and the plans that they have, they become so busy preparing for the future that they cannot enjoy the present either. So how do we make the most of whatever amount of time each of us have? We must start by making the most of every single day. I mean, what is it going to take for people to realize that they might not have as much time left as they think. People do crazy stunts, extreme sports, and watch horror movies to distance themselves from the reality of death. Because we all know that horror movies are fiction, it makes death seem unreal as well. But as I sit here, I know that my time has been shortened and I guess that I am not alone in my predicament. Each and every day, live are lost, and each one has value. Is it weird that we reconcile with each other when someone is dying? Why should it take someone on their deathbed to mend a broken relationship? Honestly, I do not know, but what I can say is that this will probably be my last entry. I cannot say if I will be able to write again after this, but for now this will be it. Interesting that after I am gone, this book, this journal that I am writing in will be one of the remaining mementos by which people will remember me. It is regrettable that I was so immature at the beginning of this journey of writing, but there is no use in changing something that has already happened. I guess there isn’t much left for me to say. But you know, I really do want to make these words that I write count. When my days truly come to an end, when I take my last breath, I hope to have lived a good life. I want to make sure that I truly enjoy every day I have left, despite the obstacles and limitations in my life as it is right now. So I guess you could say that I am signing off. Well, I guess that is it, I bid myself a farewell.

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