Do you ever think you’re in love with someone or something? Without this aspect in your life, you feel heartbroken. Stop and think for a minute. What is it about this aspect you’re truly in love with?

Many people fail to realize that it isn’t so much the aspect itself they are in love with: most of the time we’re in love with the idea of what this aspect could bring us.

I challenge you to stop yourself from feeling like not having what you want is the end of your life. If God isn’t bringing it into your life, it wasn’t meant to be. He has bigger plans for you than you can even imagine. Patience is key.

Pledge to Love Yourself

Summer is either here or right around the corner for some. Everyone always looks forward to summer because of no school or classes and it generally entails beautiful weather. But what are your big plans or goals for the summer?

If you don’t already have one, well here’s the perfect idea for you! Take this summer to discover what it’s like to completely focus on you. Yes, you can still work to finance this spell of sudden positivity, adventuring, and self-loving. But take your days off to do something new or something you love.

This summer, I pledge to learn new I’ve always been envious of others. I want to practice my guitar, learn yoga, improve my health, run more, read my bible more, listen to every genre of music, and enjoy the little things. By doing all these little tasks, I know my happiness will improve, which will lead to better relationships with friends and family. I want to spend less time crying and more time smiling. Even on the rainy days, I want to sit down with my records and dive into the past through my personal time machine.

By the end of the summer, my goal is to be the happiest person in the room. And if I find someone happier than me, I don’t want to be envious of them. I will be overjoyed that they have been able to find such happiness in a world full of gray.

Make a pledge to yourself: take the time this summer to love yourself more than ever.

Here We Go Again

Here we go again.

You’re laying in the dark.

Everyone else is sound asleep.

Your cheeks become wet.

Small streams form on your face.

You shove your face in your pillow.

You worry your whimpers might wake the others.

You soon transition to the shower.

Maybe the water will cover up the sound?

Once the tears begin to slow, you dry yourself off.

You return to your bed and cross your fingers.

But then it begins again.

Why do it?

Why do it?

Because of all those times you watched the other kids run the mile while you walked behind.

Because you were the only one who didn’t know how to wear a baseball glove.

Because you could never tag anyone else.

Because you hated knowing people were cheering for you to just finish, but not to be first.

Because you never did lose that last bit of baby fat.

Because you were told you’d never be skinnier than that other girl.

Because you never could fit right in that cheer uniform.

Because no matter what, you would never fit in with the athletic kids.

Because you never wear boots and shorts and still feel confident.

Because you never totally felt comfortable in your own skin.

Because you want to prove to all those kids in school that some day, you would be able to outrun them.

Haiti – Thoughts Before

Henry Miller, an American writer, was once quoted, “One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.” We’ve all had opportunities to shine in unfamiliar circumstances when we could prove to ourselves we can succeed at many great things. In this next week, I will be traveling to Haiti for eight short days to study agriculture.

I don’t know much about Haiti: only what I’ve been told to expect so far. They have power, but it may shut off every now-and-then throughout the day as well as the wifi. They are a conservative country. When we go there, we are to wear conservative clothing as to not stand out so much.

I plan to teach agriculture to high school students after obtaining my bachelor’s degree in agricultural education at Iowa State University. I feel that studying abroad and traveling to Haiti would provide me understanding I wouldn’t fathom without the experience. Being in the new environment for the time would humble me and help to understand what it’s like to live in a setting different from my home.

As a teacher, you never know what a student’s background may be walking into your classroom. In order to better relate to each student, knowing how to understand culture and background will help me find a connection to students. Seeing the materials teachers have in other countries will make me feel more grateful for the materials I am provided in my future classroom. Seeing Haitian classrooms will give me insight on how to motivate students to prioritize their education and provide me stories to tell the students about how they should be grateful for the education provided to them.

As Clifton Fadiman, an American author and editor, once stated, “When you travel, remember that a foreign country is not designed to make you comfortable. It is designed to make its own people comfortable.” I am excited to reach out to the people of Haiti to understand their culture and values. I have a strong desire and urge to travel to this unfamiliar country and find comfort in the experiences of meeting new people while creating new connections. I understand the comforts of Haitians are unique from my comforts, and I am looking forward to accept that and adapt.


As I pull into the driveway after a two and a half hour drive, I notice many changes. This once familiar, green, bursting-with-life place is now empty of people. All the trees and corn are turning. Leaves are covering the drive and yard. Back by the shed, the beautiful trees with orange, yellow, and green leaves engulf the border of the buildings and old vehicles. Seven vehicles always used to be parked up front, but mine is the only one home now.

I walk into the house after scoping out the landscape. As I walk through the garage, I notice it’s still just as cluttered with shelves of paint and other random items that collected as time went on. The smell seems different in the garage. It smelled more like fall. I wondered if someone put some candles in the garage as I walked into the house.

My fear was everything would be different. Much worse is what I saw though: everything looked the same. It still had its homey mess in the kitchen, living room, and dining room showing that this house was lived in and still used. However, as I walked through to the bathroom, it didn’t feel the same. I took one step into the bathroom and turned on the lights. The bathroom was a mess. Clothes were all over the floor and make up was all over the sink. This bathroom was definitely getting its fair share of use. I walked out and went straight to the room at the far end of the hall. I walked in to see an empty bedroom with no life. All the pictures were gone and the room was clean.

Nothing like it used to be. That’s when it hit me: the difference in the whole property wasn’t that people weren’t present, but it didn’t feel like home anymore.

Seemingly Immortal

I arrived at the mechanic’s shop full of people. Everybody there was always bustling around to hurry and finish his business. This place was always busy, so they wanted to get through as many jobs as they can in a day. My intentions there were not to fix my car. My car always had it’s own character and that was fine with me: it made it unique. I’ve been to this shop too many times to count in the last 18 years of my life. Most of my childhood memories were in this shop all because of one person.

I need to find him. I’m about to leave for a while, and I want to say my good byes. He’s an intimidating man with a scruffy face. He looks as though he has a beer-gut when in reality he just drinks too much Caffeine-Free Diet Pepsi and eats too much ice cream. He has a bit of a sweet tooth, which fits a sweet man perfectly. He’s the one man I can always count on to be there for me no matter what the problem is.

I check the office and find he’s absent. I walk out into the main shop where Mikey, the mechanic that’s been a worker for the shop as long as I could remember, directs me to the new edition. I walk over to see him sitting on a tractor tire just behind the library of tires he owns. He sees me walking towards him, and I can see a twinkle in his eye that I’ve seen before for a variety of reasons in the past. He knows why I’m there.

As I walk up to him, he tells the person on the phone he’ll call back. He has a few things to finish quickly. He pulls me in for one of his famous bear hugs where we see who can hug tightest. We just sit there hugging until we both know I need to leave. He attempts his persuasion of trying to get me to come home next weekend, but we both know he’s prolonging my departure. Once we say our good byes, I look at him one more time. I notice how much he’s aged recently. His crow’s feet are becoming more prominent. His once-dark-brown hair and beard are becoming peppered. He walks a little slower. It’s then that I realize my seemingly immortal father is not as immortal as I once thought as a little girl.

Trust vs. Mistrust

Trust versus mistrust. According to a developmental psychologist, Erikson, children develop by having one outcome versus another. We were discussing how by the age of one year, children will have learned trust versus mistrust according to Erikson. As I was leaving class, I was thinking about how I knew trust more than mistrust. Based on this theory, I should have no problems trusting people throughout the rest of my life. But then I thought of the example of how in this generation, this is no longer true.

Teen girls generally end up learning not to trust guys no matter how much they trusted people before. I put this into perspective with my life. I trust my dad with my life, which means I should have no problems with guys. However, I have very little trust for a guy who is searching for a relationship with me. The reason for this is because they guys I’ve had relationships with in the past have made trust difficult. Even though I always steer straight towards a relationship (no matter how much I wish to be single), I can’t bring myself to trust any guy 100%.