Dear Glee, Just Tell The Truth About Finn. Please.

English: Logo of the TV series Glee

English: Logo of the TV series Glee (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Here’s a newsflash, drugs really do KILL young people. Yup, and guess when kids do drugs and alcohol?l Apparently my two started in high school but from what I hear kids are starting younger and younger. I have two kids in college now and I think I’m a very good mom and have good instincts but apparently I trusted my kids too much and I had NO IDEA  that they were drinking in high school.  My son said once, when I asked him about high school:”high school is one big lie.”  Boy, was he ever right. Watch for it, prepare for it, it will happen and yes, it is true.

I bring this up because I happened to watch an episode of Glee on-line the other night and I felt shocked and disappointed. Of all shows, Glee was hiding something? It was hiding something HUGE and from what I read about it when it happened, there were no plans to tell the viewers how Finn/Cory died. Are you kidding me? Why not?  It is an opportunity to TEACH unlike any other. I know during the beginning of the episode Kurt’s character says something about “I don’t care how he died, I just want to remember how he lived. ” Very convenient but truly a big disappointment. Life is not one musical melody after another in the real world. Glee has covered some amazingly wonderful and difficult topics: bullying, homosexuality, transgender, obsessive compulsive behavior, Down’s Syndrome, etc. why are they coping out now?

Cory Monteith/Finn Hudson

Died of an overdose of heroin and alcohol.

English: Actor Cory Monteith at premiere party...

English: Actor Cory Monteith at premiere party of TV series Glee, Santa Monica, California. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is a show that has taken on so many important issues and I would like to see Finn’s/Cory Monteith’s death handled HONESTLY, not for me but for the thousands, millions of teenagers or pre-teens that need to understand the harsh, sometimes deadly implications of drugs and alcohol. This is reality, folks. True, we don’t go around high school breaking into song when we want with perfectly pitched voices but there is bullying and discrimination, popular kids, mean teachers and yes, there is most certainly drugs and alcohol. This is a show that has taken on so many important issues and I would like to see Finn’s/Cory Monteith’s death handled HONESTLY, not for me but for the thousands, millions of teenagers or pre-teens that need to see this. This is reality, folks. True, we don’t go around high school breaking into song when we want with perfectly pitched voices but there is bullying and discrimination, popular kids, mean teachers and yes, there is most certainly drugs and alcohol.

I’m not sure how  the last episode of the longest good-bye in history will go. I’ve heard different things but please, please just listen and let this be a teaching moment for the kids and their parents. Cory Monteith died of an overdose of heroin and alcohol, let Finn die the same way. Let others learn from his tragic mistake. Watch it together, talk about it. It’s a great opportunity to communicate. You owe it to Cory Monteith and those that loved him. Honestly, I think he would have wanted it this way.Giving his life some real meaning for others, saving lives not losing them.

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Free Write Friday: Kellie Elmore “Ivy Covered Gates”

Massachusetts Hall, Harvard University, Cambri...

Massachusetts Hall, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Yesterday, I kept coughing so much that i thought my lungs was gonna burst outta my chest and i couldn’t stop. i couldn’t even string two words without hacking and wheezing but when mama forced me to go to the doctor he said he didn’t hear anything so i had to pay twenty dollars for antibiotics that haven’t done a damn thing except make me feel worse. why do doctors make you feel sicker in the first place. shoulda just bought some of that stuff they show on rv commercials,  the green kind, you know the one where you open your mouth and spray like a mist?

Im my own person now, 18 years old, legal age but I dont understand crap the medical doctors and nurses say, i know they do that on purpose. just to put poor people in their place but not me, no, not me. Cuz, i’m gonna tell them, i am no different than you except i got all A’s and one day i’m gonna be your boss, yep you heard right miss little goody two shoes. I will be your boss. so just shut your damn mouth now before I shut if for you. Mama says i should calm myself but she done the same thing when Papa yells at her so i’m not gonna listen either.

i’m gonna listen to my self, my true gut. The little  voice inside me that says “i’m better than all of you” cause i have dreams and you don’t. Right there is the difference, enough for me to set my goals high instead of my baby brother who just wants to work in the gas factory with daddy.Living in a poor, little town like us, there are not many options except for ME. I’m gonna be a doctor and i’m gonna hold my head high and no one is gonna talk me out of it. That’s right.

I got all A’s this year and now i’m waiting for my community college acceptances to come in, i was in high school in a special advanced program and i’m waiting to hear if i can get a skolarship to the best school so i can be a doctor and fix people. yes, I will i tell you. Every day i wait for the mail. mama sayz it aint, I mean isn’t, gonna come any faster. but one day i know it will show up. So I may not be standing under the ivy covered gates at Harvard next year but i will be in the top of my class at communtiy school and after that you watch out because then I am going straight, yes, directly into Harvard with my head held higher than high. Because i have something you don’t got, i got my strength and my spirit and I believe in myself and i know, damn well know, i can do it with not one shadow of one doubt.

Signed, DOCTOR to be: Samantha E. Rowland

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Kellie Elmore: Favorite Ending of Song

Nobody Wants to Play With Me

Nobody Wants to Play With Me (Photo credit: tochis)

“And in the end, the love you take
is equal to the love you make “

“Life is a one big circle, that’s what I thought but at fifteen everything seems convoluted. My brain, practically has wires sticking out of it and one minute I was crying and the next I was mad as hell. I could be sitting on the couch with my mom not wanting any physical contact with her AT ALL and then a sappy commercial would come on and I would start to sob and wish that she would just take me in her arms and hug me like she used to when I was little. She didn’t because I didn’t give any sign of wanting to be hugged and I hadn’t given her any encouragement for the past three years to come anywhere close to me. But still, it hurt.

High School for a girl like me is hell on earth, I wasn’t one of those cheerleaders, one of the popular girls. I hated them. Or maybe I was jealous of them, I’m not sure. But I knew this, I would never be a cheerleader ever. My parents complimented me and said I was “wonderfully different” and “independent” “special” but the kids in school talked straight. They called me “weirdo.” That’s what I was, one big, tall nothing of a weirdo.

Sure,  I loved animals and volunteered at the dog shelter every day after school but that doesn’t make you prom queen or Miss Personality. It’s lonely being different, oh heck, I’ve been alone all my life. Even my over-achieving sports-minded brother didn’t care about me. He was too busy winning trophies and bragging about them. You should see his room it was like a shrine to him except he was still alive. You know, gathering more trophies and medals in college.

I guess I thought my life would be easier once he went away to college but nothing changed, In fact we had less to talk about at the dinner table. Except for my homework assignments. My parents always asked about that: For  English our assignment was: Write about every positive good feature we have. My English teacher was the only teacher I really liked and respected but this was going to be one short assignment. I sighed and rolled my eyes just thinking about it. Why couldn’t I write about someone else? Why me? I’d  rather write about my stupid older brother than myself. I put my pen to paper and started writing without thinking:

Dana: good person, helps others, kind, loves dogs, volunteers at dog shelter every day after school, tutors math to little kids, likes to write (but not about me) loves reading, don’t like myself, like my green eyes, hates nose and everything else, maybe not my hair, hair is ok. pretty good daughter, love my parents, don’t like hurting people’s feelings. love to watch people, hate being watched, or looked at, honest, fair.

I handed it to Ms. Wilson the next morning and quickly walked away.  I forgot about it until she had passed the homework back three days later and gave me mine with a big red SEE ME AFTER CLASS written on it. I thought I was going to throw up. I swear, I almost did.

I waited until everyone left and Ms. Wilson smiled,  ” Dana, she laughed, you are NOT in trouble, I just want to talk to you. I’m not Miss Wilson now, I’m Michelle. I wanted to tell you how much I admire you. Actually, you remind me a lot of me when I was your age. She laughed and said “don’t look so shocked I was YOUR age once!.” I couldn’t speak, I just sputtered. “Dana, you are one of the smartest, kindest  and most gifted students that I have ever known. You have a wonderful way with words AND a career in writing if that’s what you decide to do. I want to make sure YOU know that. I don’t feel you really know how special a person you are.” “But, But,  all the other girls…”she stopped me, “all the other girls? What the silly pom-pom girls with the fake blonde hair and blue contact eyes?” Nonsense, you, my dear are an original. One of my teachers taught me this and I’m passing it down to you because, I swear, it works. All you need to do is play the confidence game, smile even if it is pretend, carry yourself like you are the queen.

Soon enough, others will smile back and it will be natural for you. You are a lovely young woman and you give a lot of love to everything you do, it’s only a matter of time and self-confidence for you to get it all back, and you will, I promise. Do you know the word “karma” she asked me. Yeah, I said sheepishly, my parents are hippies.

“You promise, things will get better? I asked? Pinky swear, she said. So we locked pinkies and I felt better already. Miss. Wilson then  asked me for a hug which I gave her and I tried really hard NOT to cry but when I looked at her she was doing the very same thing. I left with a smile on my face and it was real.

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Leaving Us, Lost

Newborn child, seconds after birth. The umbili...

Newborn child, seconds after birth. The umbilical cord has not yet been cut. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Children will always leave you, from the minute you cut the umbilical cord until the day that you take your last gasp of air. When your child is born you are swept away with joy. Is it a boy, a girl?  You cuddle that dear baby close to your body and cover its head with sweet, soft kisses. Your life has now changed forever. You try to inhale the smells and remember them. Unfortunately, like everything else, we hold precious in our hearts, memories fade.

Babies turn into toddlers and their first independent steps they take away from you are greeted with great excitement and applause.”She’s walking!!” we say proudly to anyone who will listen but we don’t think about this as a step of independence, we are merely celebrating a milestone in our brilliant child’s life.

I can say, with confidence, that as much as you want that uninterrupted night of sleep, it comes with a price. You will miss those sticky grilled cheese hands and arms around your neck and those sloppy grape jelly kisses a lot when they stop. One day you are swinging hands in public, the next your child is muttering “that’s embarrassing.” and they pull away. The rules have changed, your children have changed, now you have to change, quickly.

Childhood is so important and then comes middle school and high school when your children are tweens and teenagers. Groan, I know. It is important for them to grow up and for you to let them. You will go through, as my husband called it “the teenage tunnel of darkness” hang on tight, folks, it will be a bumpy ride. The arguments, slammed doors, taunting, fighting, will probably make you feel like you wish you had the money to send your kids to boarding school, but they need to go through this to become independent and their own person. This is their way of leaving their comfort zone, by fighting and doing things you probably don’t even want to know about and they will lie as well. Your kid? Never! I said that too. Believe me, I don’t condone this behavior, but it smacked me in the face. Once, when I asked my son how he would describe high school he said : high school is one big lie.” I will never forget that. Ever. I was so stunned that I was speechless. Wrong time to be speechless, believe me.

I am grateful that my two young adults, 18 and 20 are so independent and comfortable with other adults.  For that, I thank the strong sense of confidence we instilled in our children and sleep-away camp. Our children begged to go to sleep-away camp where their cousins went, we agreed to give it a try. They LOVED it and so did we. When it came to college, it was easier, for all of us, having been separated before.

How we feel doesn’t matter in this equation anymore. It’s true and we need to accept it. My husband and I like being alone, together. It reminds us of the days before children without all the anxiety and stress. Staying home and watching television is date night, we don’t feel the need to go out, we can relax at home. Our babies are not babies anymore, they are young adults. Do we miss the love that they used to show us? Yes, I know I do. Things change, we have no choice but to adjust. It is not always easy; sometimes it takes a little longer than it should and yes, sometimes I cry in private.  Children will always have you in their hearts but they will leave to find and follow their own lives. When they leave, they are looking forwards to their new lives which leaves us, their parents, looking backwards for sweet memories.

Plinky Prompt: You’ve been asked to speak at your high school alma mater

  • Fun Day 002

    Fun Day 002 (Photo credit: Tostie14)

    You’ve been asked to speak at your high school alma mater — about the path of life. (Whoa.) Draft the speech. See all answers

  • “The Best Years Of Your Life”*
  • Dear Students,
    I am NOT going to give you a long and boring speech. (Pause-wait until applause dies down.)I don’t remember what was said at MY graduation; you won’t remember much here either so I will keep it short. I want you to remember two words: HAVE FUN. (Applause) Actually, make it 5 words because otherwise I will get hate letters from your parents: Study hard and have fun. For those of you who are going to college, the next 4 years of life will be an exciting, amazing, playground. Appreciate every moment, every friendship, every single thing that you learn. It won’t ever be like this again. Think of these four years as the best years you will ever have. Study hard, work hard, and get fabulous grades. Make us all proud, but more importantly, Be Proud Of Yourselves. Try and help make the world a better place. I know you can do it. CONGRATULATIONS!!

*

Quote by Albert Ellis: The best years of your life are the ones in whi…

http://www.goodreads.com/…/64153-the-bestyears-of-yourlife-are…

The best years of your life are the ones in which you decide your problems are your own.

Carry on Tuesday: All the world’s a stage

Dorm Room

Hey, it’s me, Jeff, in my dorm room and I’m in a weird ass mood. Don’t know what’s going on with me but I feel sad and strange. Like yesterday I was sitting in the student lounge with my friend, Ericka, and like everyone else was being so damn pretentious. I hate that. It’s like they were kinda showing off to each other but not in an overt way, more subtle. The girls with their short skirts pretending not to care how they looked, the guys in their fancy striped shirts, mostly unbuttoned, they all think they are so cool. Cool? Dude, they were smoking cigarettes and blowing smoke into each others faces and second-hand smoke into mine. Am I supposed to like that? Hell, no. I can’t help it, not everyone is happy.

I had my guitar and I was playing songs and Ericka was singing along and they looked at us like we were the uncool kids. So not right. I mean I kinda like college, I think, but I just don’t like those stupid cliques, that is way too high school for me. I know it’s just my freshman year but I thought college would be so much better, more grown up but it’s the same old shit, just different place. My mom and dad say to “give it a chance” and you know, I am trying, but it’s not helping. Plus, gotta say I really miss my dog, Denver. That stupid dog followed me everywhere and he knew what I was feeling better than most people. What if he forgets me while I am up here? I don’t think I could take that, I really don’t. Am I like the only person that misses their dog and stuff?

All the kids talk about is how much beer they drank and how many times they threw up. Like it’s an accomplishment or something. I don’t fit in, least not yet. I tell my parents that I am mostly happy which is kinda a lie. I don’t tell them about the really bad grades I’ve gotten. The teachers here they take themselves so damn seriously, Dr. this and Dr. that. Big deal, they have a Ph.d it’s not like they found the cure to cancer or anything.

In my English Lit. class the professor starts quoting “All the world’s a stage” like I haven’t heard that one a million times before; dude, like I am living it. Hell,  I pretend to be happy and well-adjusted but I just don’t feel right here, maybe I’m not ready. Maybe I should have taken a gap year and worked, I kinda think my mom was right but I can’t tell her that. Ericka feels the same way that I do, she misses home a lot too. Hey, maybe we can leave on the same day if we both go home, but I gotta say, I would miss Ericka, and her house is like four hours away from mine.

People assume that once high school is over everyone will go to college with their new shit from Target and be happy. Okay, for real? Not gonna lie, I don’t like it here. Jeez, I wish I did. I’m gonna try to get my grades up, cuz I can’t bear to think of the shit I will get from my parents when I get home and fail like most everything except for Philosophy which I just aced. Yeah, like that. I will “give it a chance” which my parents tell me on every text or phone call. I know what I feel.  I just kinda miss the way things used to be, my old pals, my town, yeah, even my stupid younger sister. Here, I just hang around alone or with Ericka because everyone else is just partying  and doing dumb shit. I’m giving it a chance, I really am, but I swear, if I’m not totally happy here in like two to four weeks, I am so going home.

Carry On Tuesday – If I could have just one wish….

‘Everyone says the same thing,’ she thought as she lay in the darkness, her arms folded above her head, hiding her face. ‘There is no secret, no surprise, no one is original, I’m certainly not.” Clara didn’t care about originality, she didn’t care about anything anymore, part of why her mother and father were always in her face, worried about her, crying over her. Why didn’t they see, she just wanted them to give her space, to leave her alone.

Her boyfriend of three years had left, they had broken up over a nasty fight and she had sent him away for good. At the moment it was definitely the right thing to do and she knew that. Max had become different, unreliable at times, unpredictable. She had asked him over and over if she had done anything wrong to upset him and he always laughed her off and just said “Nah, babe, it’s just how I am” and so she accepted it for a while. Other time he was his old self, happy, engaged and loving.

Clara knew that he had a new girlfriend, some girl who rode a Harley and dressed in black leather. It had taken him all of four days to rebound and get involved with this new biker chick and now they were inseparable. It made Clara sick to even think about it much less see them but she also couldn’t avoid it. This was no “Romeo and Juliette” love story. She knew that he was drinking a lot again, and she had always hated when he did that; he called her square and said she was “no fun.” She knew she was fun, she just was strong, strong enough not to put up with all his lame bullshit.

She wasn’t sorry she had broken up with him, not like all her girlfriends who had encouraged her to go back to him, those spineless goats. No, she wasn’t sorry at all. If she had one wish, one wish at all, she would have broken up with him three and a half years ago when her gut feelings told her he was a loser and that this was a relationship that was never going to go anywhere. That, was her biggest regret.

She crawled off the couch, took a shower and got dressed. She gathered her school books together and finished writing her essay for her college Literature class. She was done moping, he had taken up her time and energy, she didn’t need him anymore to prove herself. She went down the stairs, grabbed a cup of coffee, said a cheerful “good-bye” to her parents and headed off to class.

The Object Of Being Left

Dandelion gone to seed.

Image via Wikipedia

I sprayed after shave cologne on my wrists today, it was an old bottle with maybe an inch of liquid left inside it. I found it at my mother’s home, in an abandoned bathroom drawer, where she had hidden it after my father died. They were three odd-shaped bottles left, pushed back in a drawer like teenagers hiding beer or vodka. I took those almost empty bottles home with me and today I used one. The smell was so powerful and so familiar that tears immediately welled up in my eyes. I longed to see my father wearing his  soft plain purple and blue striped shirt and feel his  arms hugging me. I willed it to happen, almost believing it and then reality took over and left me alone with a sharp pain in my heart. I miss the one person in our family who knew me best with just a faint wink of an eye or a hint of a smile. I felt lost; I felt alone.

My dad died ten years ago and I don’t feel this way all the time but the pain goes away completely. I can feel fine for weeks or months and then some memory, a scent, the sight of his old shirt crumpled up in my closet will remind me harshly of my loss. When one is young no one tells you about all the pain you have ahead of you. When you are young you think you want to be grown-up and mature but you have no idea what that really feels like. There are times when it never feels good, not even for half of a single second of any one day.

I went grocery shopping today and met a friend whose son just graduated with my son. We talked about how their graduation from High School was hitting us both hard and in unexpected times and places. She said that once in a while she has to pull off on the side of the road to just cry and then, as if nothing happened, she puts her turn signal  back on and continue her journey. I have been on that road too. While I was in the grocery store I passed water guns and felt that same feeling of loss, I wanted to cry but I wouldn’t let myself. I thought about my son and his friends and the water gun fights, one tiny water gun pistol still sitting in the back of our old, big family car, moving from one side of the car to the other.

I came home and marched up the stairs to get to my room, as fast as I could hobble, to reach for my computer and for a bunch of tissues from a yellow box. The color yellow comforts me; it makes me feel happier. I thought about my son, who is a Counselor, away at camp. He left a week ago; I feel bereft. I don’t want to call him, though eventually I will. I’d rather wait to hear his voice on the phone, starting off with the same low-key “Hey.”I am being widely immature and over emotional, part of me knows that. He is not making the transition from home to camp to college easy for me. I wonder, if at college, will he forget about us as much? When he is at camp, his second home, we really do not exist and while I am proud of my independent son, today I feel sad and lonely. Here I am, at home, opening up the window of his musty room, surrounded by half eaten boxes of cookies. Pain, like accumulated  laundry that sits in the middle of his blue carpet, taunts me.

The Moment ( HS Graduation 2011)

Cap Toss

Image by Herkie via Flickr

I never knew how high and wide the big white High School graduation tent was until I stood under it. I didn’t realize how massive it was until I wandered through it.  I walked through the aisles under the tent saying “Hi” and “Congratulations” to people I hadn’t seen in years.

I didn’t know how I would react when my son’s name was read over the microphone yet instinctively we stood and clapped and cheered and roared. I saw a young man walk back to his seat in slow motion; I didn’t realize it was my son; his face  looked so grown up. Teenagers age, I think,  once they put on their High School graduation caps and gowns; he looked six inches taller and six years older too.

It’s all a blur, the speeches and the people you smile at, familiar faces that you have seen in elementary school recitals or a middle-school play. The friends that you hug warmly are the best, closest friends that you have, that you have talked to all year, day in and day out, wondering anxiously if you and your child would ever make it to this grand day. We hold on to each other for an extra minute, sharing this surreal moment, not believing we are actually, finally, here.

They officials on the podium made an announcement to please refrain from clapping until all the students names have been read. Yeah, right. I felt sorry for the first few kids whose last name started with “A.” Those parents were very well-behaved; it just took one family to start…  There were further instructions from the podium to NOT clap for each student so I felt perfectly justified playing my silly game of selection. I did NOT clap for the kids that had ever been especially mean to my son (starting with kindergarten through 12th) and for the mean-spirited moms, dads and kids that everyone knew, were the culprits of spreading ill-will. It was like a silent victory lap for moms and dads; besides we all did the same thing.

I was proud of my self-control, all my sadness, tears, and sobbing began months before the actual event. On the day of graduation I smiled and laughed and was so proud of my son and the amazing young man he has turned out to be.  I was also filled with pride when his three best friends names were called, we shouted and clapped for each one. I will, undoubtedly, miss my son when he leaves for college but also, I will miss his friends, “the posse” as I called them or “The Entourage.” I have no doubt that they will see each other when they come home from college, but this long, lovely chapter of best friends and video games, parties, dinners, dates and diners has ended. I will miss that and my special group of “The Moms.”

Just when I thought the ceremony was over, the President of the High School, told the students that they had officially  graduated. The blue caps were flung in the air with unbridled joy and excitement. There was a deafening roar from the students and all my self-control evaporated in that moment; I burst out crying. It was so emotionally intense; it was captured in my mind and heart forever.

The graduates beamed so much that it looked like they were lit up from inside with joy and pride.  They were shining, like new copper pots or brand new pennies, excitement dancing in their eyes. Congratulations to my son and to all his friends and classmates; Congratulations to the Class of 2011!

Predicting My Future? Plinky Prompt

Brother and sister in the street of Qala-i-Sha...

Image via Wikipedia

  • Congratulations, Pass The Tissues
    Ten years ago my son was eight and my daughter was 6. I’m sure I thought about them graduating one day from High School  for a second or two but I was in a dense fog. I just had NO idea how I would feel. With a 6-year-old and an 8-year-old you don’t have time to think about the future; you are busy every minute with carpools and dance classes and baseball and swimming and lunches and snacks and dinner and shopping and playdates. Endless playdates with an equal amount of driving. My son graduates on Sunday and I have been crying a lot. I try to hide it from him, but sometimes he figures it out, it isn’t hard. One quick glimpse of my face and he knows, he senses it, he sees it. We understand each other without words. I expected him to graduate but I never thought how devastated I would feel. My brown-haired, brown-eyed first-born. I am thrilled with him no one could be prouder; his choice of colleges was fantastic. Change is hard for me and I never was good at saying “Good-Bye.” All my life, I’ve hated to say “Good-bye” to anyone I loved.
    My first-born son is leaving and I have written a lot about that in my blog. A year from now, my daughter, my blonde-haired baby will also graduate from High School. Twenty- one months apart yet only one grade year apart. I feel like I am being sucker punched constantly. In a year, my husband and I, will be “empty nesters” and while I am sure that we will enjoy it, now, it’s a bitter, lemon-sour word, near a very open, raw, wound.
  • Can anyone out there with a graduating Senior from High School relate?
  • Previous Answer