Girl on Fire

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There is a moment, when your whole life comes into perspective. And when it happens, you just have to take it and run.

What if I was born into a strict Afghan family? Married by age twelve, and hoping for a successful childbirth at age 13. Would I be different? Would I still be a fighter? Of course I would fight, and my heart would remain the same. For a hearts a heart, no matter what storms weather it.

But I am not an Afghan girl, nor am I burdened by real problems. I live in the city we call The Big Apple, a privileged girl: unmarried, with food and water and a home. But sometimes I wish people would listen. I wish that my classmates and friends, heavied by wealth, would drop their cares and open their eyes. I think that if one person listened to what I had to say, they would think of me differently.

Instead I am bombarded with imagery so far from the truth I live! The fact that girls' boobs and butts are the only thing holding their place in this bedraggled society angers the hell out of me. I think if our generation of ladies laid of the mascara, and cracked open a book, something good would come of it.

At the same time, we can read and write and learn. We are doctors and soldiers and surgeons and teachers, and we not only educate the dumb, but provide for the wealthy. We are what hold this place we call Earth together. I think that if one person realized that, we could all live happier lives.

This is nothing new, nor is it a new problem, or a small one. A change does start with one girl, but one girl cannot change the destinies of others instilled in a lifetime of ignorance. This seems hopeless, but nothing is. One girl may not be able to change the world, but the billions out there can. It only takes one realization, one moment for the pieces to fall into place. And a girl, a girl on fire, with a fighting heart, for these changes to be made.

We girls, we try so hard to be heard, but we are silenced. Veils are placed over our heads like privileges, instead they are burdens. People expect us to fall, but we get up. To fail, yet we prevail, and soar, and fly, until our crafted wings of hope and promise burst into something more: reality. If life is a dream, then dreaming is living. So let us dream.

My survival may not be a constant threat, and the idea of an education simple, but I am a lucky one. One who has tasted the bounty a city can offer. The life of an expensive school, and the simplicity of a loving family.

Some might say that this is the way of life. Some girls are born to be sold and bought and violated. But it isn't true. It wasn't always this way. Somewhere back our male predecessors assessed knowledge through muscle and power through voice. I know where I stand, which is higher than most girls dream of, but for me it is not high enough. I want all girls to be at my level. And the I want to keep on rising. To the next level. And the next. And the next. Until I am unstoppable.

So next time she tries to speak, let her. And when she wants an education, teach her. We are begging for a brighter future: so make it happen. I am not a God or a messenger; just a girl with a fighting heart, repeating what countless others have said before me. If you just listen, you might find:
she is worth it
she can do it
she is IT!

I am going to be the first women Navy Seal one day. And no one is going to stop me.

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This article has 19 comments. Post your own now!

Mckay This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
May 15, 2013 at 6:18 pm
Few grammatical errors here and there. But whatever. Let's get to the good stuff.  Very powerful piece. I think it doesn't only motivate girls but guys too, even if it was written primarily to girls. It gives hope for a better tomorrow. We are that future that can change society's stereotypes and those standards that prevent women from accomplishing those goals that they want to achieve. Great movie to be inspired by also. I believe in you, Liv. I know that you can become ... (more »)
Laugh-it-Out This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
May 20, 2013 at 12:42 pm
Thanks, I never really thought about writing it for guys, I mean i did write it primarily for girls. But I guess it can motivate guys. Are you giving the guy perspective. Haha jk sorry to be creepy. Anyway when you see me on the news being al famous, haha, you can be like "I know you" haha keep rockin :)
Shagun This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
May 5, 2013 at 2:50 am
Really inspirational. Although the grammar was a little off, i know that's what happens when you write about something you feel passionate about. Your hands can't quite match the speed with which your thought flow ;). Great job, keep writing
Firelover said...
May 3, 2013 at 4:43 pm
All, i can say is that this is wonderful, absolutely inspiring and amazing  
Cutey-Beauty said...
Apr. 23, 2013 at 6:37 am
Very inspiring, thank you so much :) Go FIRST LADY NAVY SEAL EVER! Hurray! 
MyApocalyptic This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Apr. 22, 2013 at 5:57 pm
This is truly inspirational, not to mention well-written. You have a fire in your spirit that I know will go far in whatever you do, be it writing or living your dream of becoming a SEAL. The essay itself has some minor grammatical errors, but other than that, I can't find a flaw. I believe in you, man! Keep up this attitude, and you will not only go far, but inspire many of our fellow girls to do so as well :)
tuckertwin12 said...
Apr. 17, 2013 at 9:58 pm
Amazing! I think the same thing and I don't think I could have said it better myself! That was truly inspiring! Keep writing! And I hope you become a SEAL! (I think my new favorite quote might be "if life is a dream then dreaming is living" :)
laurengerhard This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Apr. 9, 2013 at 9:30 pm
This is beautifully written.
mollybug13 said...
Apr. 9, 2013 at 7:25 pm
Very inspirational I love how you put If life is a dream then dreaming is living.
WhenItRains21 said...
Apr. 3, 2013 at 9:44 pm
Very inspirational! I loved that you pulled inspiration from a movie, and also how you compared life to that of an Afghan girl. There are some little grammar issues, but nicely done overall!
LexusMarie said...
Apr. 2, 2013 at 7:45 pm
Hi! This is really well written! I love the fourth paragraph! So, so true! More people need to stop by and give this strong, beautiful piece a read!
SarClark said...
Mar. 31, 2013 at 9:51 pm
I agree with Holly! This piece was very strong in the style it's been written in and I liked your thought process. It all flowed well. All in all great job.
holly1999 said...
Mar. 31, 2013 at 2:32 pm
Wow! Great writing, so inspirational and I can feel the passion behind your writing. I loved this, it was brilliant. I have no doubt that you will follow your dreams and become the first woman Navy seal. Great work :)
dagnytaggart said...
Mar. 31, 2013 at 1:24 pm
With the amount of passion behind your writing, I have no doubts that you will become the first woman Navy seal. Very good work, and I am super inspired right now. Girl power!
Literature_Darling said...
Mar. 31, 2013 at 1:17 pm
It was OK. I liked your topic, but it needs a lot of work. Your grammer was quite off. You might want look up some rules for commas, fragments, colons,  and the proper use of the word "nor". For me, that is my biggest  issue with your grammer. If you are going to use the word nor in a sentence there has to be the word neither! Neither (blank) nor (blank). Also there were quite a few errors with complex and compund sentences! Be careful next time.
SaphiraBrightscales This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Mar. 29, 2013 at 10:26 am
Firstly: WOW! You know what good writing is to me? Simple decent words put together to write something meaningful. Something that matters. Something that gives my heart a warm feeling. Something that when I read that passionate fire ignites in my chest. This one did al that. The only teeny tiny thing I can point out is typos and some punctuation, Otherwise the writing is really good. I am not a big fan of flowery language, that doesn't stand upon some solid ground facts and beliefs so this w... (more »)
JettaWintryThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Mar. 26, 2013 at 8:44 pm
I love your attitude towards this subject!! I really love it. You're so passionate, and it seems you'll do anything to get your way (not in a bad way; it means you're ambitious). I really liked your essay as well. You connected to all areas of the world, not only our insignificant country, and you displayed a well-thought-out system of principles and reasons. I loved this. I really did. And I absolutely love your ambitious, fighting spirit. The last line was very touching as well. Gr... (more »)
Lisa_Scars said...
Mar. 18, 2013 at 9:13 pm
Nice article, your invoking spirt is inspiring. I imagined drum playing  in my head when i was reading this. 
Laugh-it-Out This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Mar. 19, 2013 at 3:22 pm
thanks!!! As you can tell I'm kinda passionate ;)
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