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What Are You Thankful For?

It is almost Thanksgiving, so the question rises again: What are you thankful for?

I would first like to direct my thanks at the existence and accessibility of chocolates. They have helped me through so many sulking and miserable hours. The rich and silky sensations that they bring are welcomed as a ray of sunshine at any time, any day. The sweetness warms a cold heart easily. It smooths the cracks and fills it with amiable joy. I heard somewhere that the world is running out of the supply of chocolates. If that is true, the world, at least my world, will truly end.

Next, I want to acknowledge another equally important part of my life and give it, or them, my thanks: the sky, and everything within it. Every morning when I walk out of my home, the sky never fails to amaze me with its gown sewn with the fabric of dawn. Especially on the day of the eclipse, the sky dressed up like a queen for such a grand occasion, gracing the entire cozy town of college station into a land of gold and fairy tale. Then at evening, after a brief retirement during noon, she puts on another dress that is more magical and mysterious and starts to dance. The sky’s shade changes with each passing second, for when she twirls fast around the burning ball of fire, she lures the clouds to joy with her. The sky loves to experiment with different color patterns. Violet, navy blue, baby blue, chrome yellow, aureolin, and floral white shows the sky’s love for the summer beach and the tropics. While cherry blossom pink,, alice blue, and cream reveals her sudden endearment towards vanilla cupcakes and smoothies.

At last, I give my thanks to emotions. Complex sentiment is the biggest flaw yet one of the most defining characteristic of mankind. Of course feelings can sometimes be painful. However, strong feelings often indicate the freshness and the ongoing exuberance of the world. Emotions often die down after a thing is no longer interesting or new. For example, nervousness and adrenaline rush often accompany a newly employed and young EMT. As time goes on, however, experience and calmness will replace his anxious feelings. Emotions are spices added to a dish, they are the electric shock that jostles a heart during defibrillation. Without them, it is hard to feel alive, for when we are writing our history every day, it is the emotion that gives the words meaning and color.

As usual, I have many other things to be thankful for. However, I picked those three since they occurred to me first during my endless list making.

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Rejection

In Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Huck chose to follow his own belief and saved Jim. In order to save Jim, Huck was willing to even fall into the pit of eternal suffering. Like Huck I also have some disagreement over the beliefs of people around me.

Back in primary school, my mom was friend to several families whose kids have similar ages to me. Unlike in the US, primary schools were already surrounded with the heat of competition in Asia. As a result, I was often compared with the others. Every time the moms met, they would start asking each other questions like “How’s your daughter doing?” To anyone else, it might have been the equivalent of “how is she”. However, to their kids, the subtle meaning was very clear: “What’s her rank in class? What sport team is she on? Any awards?”

The inquisitions often made me felt like I was not accomplishing anything comparing to the others. For a short term, the sense of dissatisfaction did no more damage than making me sulk for a short time. However, as time flew, the feeling of inferiority started to develop. The ugly hole would eventually evolve into uncontrollable irritation toward family members, friends, and myself. I was disgusted and annoyed by this anger because I knew that it came from somewhere no more than the parents’ chattering. The comparisons made me question the friendship between my friends and I, for I knew that if my grade fell, my friends’ parents would pull their children away from me – they believe deeply in the bad influence among peers. So was the friendship based merely on grades? It was as if the parents were merely using the kid with the good grade as an example for others to follow like a tool. If he or she’s average suddenly dropped, I had no doubt that his or her “friends” would vanish like a puddle under the sun.

Comparison will always be one topic that I cannot fully agree on with the parents. I think that developing my own goals and doing everything to the best of my ability will lead me much further than surviving solely on comparison.

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Proud(?)

(This week’s blog prompt is a complete contrast against this weekend’s mood, but I will try to come up with something…)

While it is necessary to identity personal flaws and work to improve them, discovering strength and ability also benefits a person. It is important to balance those two sides, for too much self “finger-pointing” will lead to depression. On the other hand, excessive self confidence may result in a arrogant personality.

Even though going to competitions makes me nervous every time, I have successfully developed several ways to minimize anxiety and enjoy the experience. I would prepare hard for the entire year and I make myself memorize my lines so well that they are engraved into my genetic codes. I am proud of my memorization skills, and when it connects with hard work, I can often get brilliant results. I always try my hardest in every competition to express myself fully, especially in categories such as drama and poetry, which requires lots of “stepping out of my shell” type of dedication.

At school, I am impressed with myself for being able to function like a normal human being last year after getting up at four and sleeping at twelve almost everyday to study. I am still trying to get last year’s spirit back into junior year after a whole summer break. I am also pleased that I went back to the violin after almost a year of depressing consideration.

When looking at the social aspect of life, I think that I have become more talkative. I finally started to ignore my comfort zones and try new experiences, such as going to pvamu orchestra to play with them, or contacting volunteer and shadowing opportunities in college. Finally, I am proud that I can stop myself from drowning in depressing thoughts so far.

(After all, I did complete the blog, and I guess I’m quite proud of that.)