Anxiety

A constant anticipation

Of everything that exists

Foot shaking, nail biting

My stomach in a pit

Never in the moment, right here right now

I want to succeed but I‘m clueless as to how

I fear failure more than anything

Irritation from everything around

Eventually, I’m defeated

And I simply shut down.

From the outside I seem lazy

Just a girl lying in her bed

But if only you knew the capacity

Of the thoughts whirling around my head

I finally remember to breathe

And ride the bumpy waves

For one moment ill feel defeated

And the next one I’ll be okay

Advertisements

Proud To Be Who I Am

If you haven’t already figured out by the enormous amount of inspirational posts on social media, today is National Women’s Day. At this point in my life, I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up; I don’t know yet what my political views are; but I do know that I’m becoming a young woman, and I know that this young woman is a true feminist.

The concept of feminism is misconceived by many. Some think that being a feminist means believing that a woman’s worth is more than a man’s.

I understand feminism to mean equality of men and women…that humans of all races, religions, genders, sexual orientations, etc. are treated equally, are paid equally, and are acknowledged equally.

Once I was shy, quiet, sweet, sensitive, fearful, and pretty much considered a goody goody. I used to allow people to walk all over me because I was scared of being judged, getting in trouble, and hurting people’s’ feelings. I was insecure. I was nervous to ask questions. I was hesitant to show others my weird, quirky self. I was scared to tell people that they hurt me. I was scared to ask for any favors or ask for any help.

Today, although I am still struggling to find my confidence,

I am feeling the beginnings of strength and power growing as I get closer and closer to being a woman.

I am learning to stick up for myself more and I’m not so scared of other people’s judgments.

I have realized that I just have to be my true self, and then the right friends will come along.

I have been called a bitch for speaking up for myself.

I have been called annoying for being happy and weird.

However, none of these have stopped me from the commitment to be myself. I am currently working on becoming the best woman I can be, and the best version of myself possible, so that I can maybe guide others in doing the same.

So, Happy International Women’s Day! Hope everyone, both men and women, felt their strength and power today!

xo

Jilly

Not One More.

The recent high school shooting in Parkland, Florida has left me heartbroken, and it has caused me to view our society in a much more cautious way than I did before.

On social media, I have been seeing a lot of political views regarding this tragic event. Honestly, I have many opinions about various topics, but whether I am a Republican or Democrat, a conservative or liberal, or any other juxtaposed term that is utilized to divide our nation, well, I do not believe that these labels matter so much in this dire situation. We are all people and we are all Americans and we should all realize that we, as a nation, are in trouble.

What is most important, I believe, is that this shooting, and all of the others, have left me and so many others feeling absolutely devastated. And it has left us children of this country feeling scared and unsafe. I don’t know what the solution is, whether it’s gun control or mental health care that needs to change. How I see it, every solution has some sort of loophole, and there seems to be some sort of argument against any solution presented.

I do not pretend to know how to solve this absurd amount of mass shootings in our country, and I am sure many of you have your opinions and ideas, which is great. However, what I do know is that we, the kids of America, deserve to feel safe and protected in our own schools. But, to do this we have to drop our labels and unite. Yes, it is extremely important to voice our opinions and to find compromise on certain issues, but there should be no compromising, no arguments, when it comes to children’s lives.

This shooting has left a major impact on me. I can’t imagine losing one person at my school, let alone 18. I also think that the aspect of this shooting occuring in a similar community to my own has made think about this situation even more fully. This could have happened anywhere. The community of Parkland is thought to be one of safest in our country. Who could have imagined that this would happen? Those poor kids went to school expecting a normal school day—maybe even better than a normal day because it was Valentines Day. Instead, they heard gunshots and witnessed their friends and teachers getting killed. I cannot imagine the parents that day—sending their kids to school and then finding out that some of their kids would not come home. This is what real horror is. And schools should never be places where kids witness that kind of horror. The thought of it terrifies me, and that this could happen anywhere is even more terrifying.

Like I wrote earlier, I am not sure how to regulate guns to minimize these attacks. I’m only fourteen. But, I personally don’t see a reason for anyone to have an automatic weapon, for it seems to only be effective for these crazy mass shootings. I understand that regulating the purchases of these guns might not help to reduce mass shootings, but the fact that it was extremely easy for a troubled kid to obtain an automatic weapon makes me worry for our country.

I hope that our government continues to work to solve this issue. During this time, I think it’s important for adults to drop their political labels and realize that this country has had enough. Change something now. For the sake of your children. We all deserve to feel safe and secure. This is our childhood. Please give it back to us.

xoJilly

I cannot wait to teach my daughter…

i cannot wait to teach my daughter

to speak her mind

and to set no limits

and to pop the bubble of expectations

that society attempts to trap us inside of

 

i cannot wait to teach my daughter

her unconditional level of worthy

no matter her size, appearance, or status

but of what comes from the beauty of her mind

 

i cannot wait to teach my daughter

that even if she is treated as a worthless little girl

her voice has the capacity to move mountains and crush barriers

 

i cannot wait to teach my daughter

that the independence of her heart and her thoughts offer enough

to alter the ways of the world

 

i cannot wait to teach my daughter

to keep skipping on her own path

darling,

keep on going and i promise you

your impact will be everlasting

What Papa Taught Me

Everyone that lives eventually dies, and that is the way the world works. Some deaths are more tragic than others, which is unfortunate. But some deaths, while still extremely upsetting, are long anticipated, and observing the process allows you to grow as a person. This was my experience with my great-grandfather, Nelson Dembs.

I have had a great year so far, but certain emotions have been overwhelming me. I am at a point in my life where certain questions begin to form regarding who I am and what I desire, and not knowing the answers to these questions has been difficult for me recently. I have always been a very deep thinker, but my mind does not stop racing when certain thoughts come into my mind. Recently I have been attempting to cope with this overwhelming whirl of feelings, by minimizing the depth of my thoughts. By trying to go shallow. In my heart this felt wrong because I knew that my mind was capable of so much more than thinking petty thoughts. I spent many weeks on my phone and online for most of my days, worried about things like social media, Netflix, obsessing about things that really don’t matter, and never truly living in the moment. I was not unhappy; I was numb. I just did not want to feel anything. Maybe this was right for me at the time; maybe I just needed a break from always feeling things so deeply.

But when my Papa passed away, my whole perspective changed. I had a special relationship with my Papa, even though he lived in Florida. I always wished that I could be with him. It’s so strange, because even though I am still grieving over his death, I feel that now he can always be watching over me, and he can now guide me through my life more than ever. The distance between us was hard for me, but now I constantly feel his presence.

Talking with my family about all of the amazing qualities of my Papa, and putting my own thoughts regarding my Papa together in my eulogy, brought me to the realization that my Papa lived a meaningful, fulfilled life because of his morals and desire to live. My Papa changed the world, and he impacted the lives of many, many people. He didn’t do this by keeping himself distracted with self-doubt or fear of not being liked or obsessing about how he looked or what he ate. He chose to live in the moment. Because he chose to live this way he was able make difficult and life-changing decisions– for example–he decided to hitchhike from Rochester, New York, to here in Detroit to provide a better future, not just for himself, but for every one of of his family members. He wasn’t thinking about the “what-ifs”, he wasn’t thinking about what other people thought about his actions, he just did it, and this courageous move of my great-grandfather is why my family is here today, and why I have a good life today.

My Papa lived in the moment, and he did not dwell on the past or the future. He once told my mom and my uncle, “There is sunrise and sunset, and this, right here, is the sunshine.” He chose to live in the sunshine.

Now that my Papa is watching over me, I want to live the lessons he taught me. He taught me to be resillient, through all of the personal and financial battles he fought throughout the years. He taught me the importance of family, and how I should enjoy my time spent with them as much as possible. He taught me to think of the well-being of others as well as myself, and to live for today.

As I begin winter vacation, and head off to Israel, I have really been to trying to limit my time on Instagram and Snapchat. This is because I can be happy and have fun without having to publicize what I am doing everyday, and I also don’t have to spend time on my trip checking up on what other people are doing. I want to focus living in the present, and I want to truly enjoy my time with my family, and to figure out how I may be able to help others. This is how I want to live now—in honor of one of the greatest men I have ever known, my Papa Nelson.

Thankful To Be Me

Where in your life are you wasting your time? This year, so far, has been quite a puzzle. I am trying to figure out what to do with my life. Yes, I know I’m only fourteen years old, but I have let go of some activities through my difficult years of middle school, and initially, that is truly what I needed. I needed time to think, and to process everything occurring in my life. Now, I am in a much happier state (Thank God!) and I am realizing that what once was helpful and necessary to me has turned into me, laying around, wasting my time.

Experiencing depression and anxiety can feel like a viscous cycle. For me personally, this cycle consists of anxiety that makes me worry and tells me to do everything and don’t stop moving and you are wasting your life away….

…While my depression is fighting back, draining energy and not wanting to do anything but lay in bed and watch Netflix. And scroll. And scroll. And scroll.

Recently, I had a very busy school night, which hasn’t happened in a while. I realized that I was so happy that night because it was filled with such amazing events, like my first debate on the debate team with my best friend. That night, I came to the conclusion that in order to feel happier, I needed to be busier, to add things to my life that make me feel good and take away things that don’t. This sounds simple, but it isn’t. Sometimes, I really don’t even know what I enjoy doing! I don’t want to get too busy, though. Been there, done that…

I started thinking about my phone: does scrolling through Instagram really make me a happier person? The answer was simple. Being on my phone has not made me a happier person, and if anything it has done the exact opposite. I have begun to shift my phone usage by leaving it in my backpack for the most part while I am at school, and participating in other activities such as reading, writing, or spending time with my family.

Around this time of Thanksgiving, I reflect on everything. This helps me remember how beautiful my life is, and I am realizing more and more that I shouldn’t be spending my time scrolling out of reality or laying in bed doing nothing when I want to be active and productive. This Thanksgiving I am remembering more of who I am and what I like to do in real time, not on a screen and not in my daydreams. And I am reminding myself that the most beautiful part of life is live (not on a screen) and right in front of me.

So call a friend, talk to that boy, tell your grandparents you love them, thank your parents for everything, hug people, kiss people, take up skiing, skip down the street, climb a tree, whatever you do, love your life to the fullest. Life is so precious and beautiful! Don’t let things that make you unhappy block your view of all the beauty and the goodness in your life. You only have one life! Live it!

xo

Jilly