Katie | Teen Ink


September 26, 2015
By kpainter15 SILVER, Stow, Massachusetts
kpainter15 SILVER, Stow, Massachusetts
6 articles 0 photos 0 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass. It's about dancing in the rain."

Katie stroking the keys of a grand piano, as beautiful music swells to fill the room and a black cat sleeps contentedly nearby. Sitting in a polished office, Katie continually glancing at the clock as she waits for the work day to come to an end. The whoosh of a gentle spring breeze as Katie runs carefree after a butterfly, blonde pig tails streaming behind her. Katie leading her team to victory as she scores the winning goal. Waiting forlornly on the back steps, Katie with her head in her hands. The small enclave in the living room where Katie does all of her best writing. Katie walking in the woods, alone and at peace. Katie posing confidently in front of the camera, hand on hip and grinning. The exclusive party where Katie stains her new dress fifteen minutes after the moment that changed her life. Katie tearing open a letter from Concord Academy on a gray afternoon in March. The unforgiving sun beating down on the village in Uganda as Katie is surrounded by her thirteen adopted daughters. Katie shivering as she flies unchallenged down the slopes of the mountain. The smell of fresh paint as Katie walks through the doorway, frowning and shaking her head. Katie’s hands shaking as she prepares to go on the air for the first time. Katie seeking out a friendly face in the mass of people around her. The stage where Katie used to perform, now dusty and left untouched for decades. Katie puzzling out the meaning of five mysterious characters before her. The exhilaration when she realizes they spell her name and can be arranged with other letters to express other, more complex ideas. Katie in her bedroom, trying to figure out why unfamiliar faces are gathered around her, and more importantly, why they claim to be her family. Katie pulling her hair back and taking a deep breath as she prepares for the grueling but ever so satisfying trek up Vermont’s highest peak. Pale, Katie staring in dazed horror at the words printed in bold, angry print on the sign ahead. The smell of coconut wafting through the sticky Florida air as Katie makes her way home after a long but fulfilling day. Katie feeling blessed, deep in thoughtful meditation. The memory of the dog with chocolate-colored coat creeping into Katie’s thoughts as the anniversary of a grief-filled night approaches.

The author's comments:

In this piece, I chose to write as the omniscient narrator of snippets from my life as well as  those from the lives of other, imaginary Katies. I approached this assignment by searching the internet for images of real-world Katies and placing each in a unique fictional situation based on her appearance, surroundings and other clues derived from context. I then supplemented these with moments from my own personal experiences. In general, my goal was to reflect the diversity of experiences the other Katies in the world and I encounter on a daily basis. Some of us are radiant with joy - the young girl chasing the butterfly, for example - while at the exact same time, others are completely devastated - the girl confronted with the mysterious but undeniably terrible sign. Of course, there are a myriad of experiences that inspire emotions somewhere in between utter bliss and total despair, and I believe my piece captures these as well. Reading, writing and thinking about the self over the past week has allowed me to recognize some of the many things that influence who we are and how we identify ourselves. Reading “Bill” and writing this piece led me to realize the role that objects and experiences play in shaping an identity.

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