College Reflection Letter

Throughout this college research project, I was able to straighten out my priorities to distinguish my goals much clearer than I did before. Before this college project, my main goal was to apply for California State University, Long Beach and attend there for my undergraduate studies majoring in some type of health and minoring in art. This project helped me expand my horizons in that it gave me hope that I may be eligible for admittance to Chapman despite some low grades on my transcript, because I am involved in volunteering and leadership, and I still have a chance through SAT and ACT testing. My goal is still to attend CSULB, but now I have Chapman as my high reach school because it is also local and I can commute there. CSULB is ranked #33 in the western region while Chapman U is ranked #7 in western region schools; I figured it wouldn’t hurt to aim high for Chapman while still having my eye on CSULB. Some surprises consisted of my consideration of different majors rather than art, such as screenwriting and tv production. My biggest accomplishment in putting this portfolio together was being able to use what I learned from my favorite past time hobby in sophomore year (looking up colleges and professions) into a single file and setting my priorities straight: the go big or go home in the field of health. Something I would do differently next time would be to research more schools outside the state, even though my plan is to commute in college. Doing this helped me realize how much I love health and made me eager for college to come around; reality struck and I feel the greatness of (almost) moving onto a new chapter in my life.

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My face when I think of college.

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Writer from Within

This year, I started considering myself a writer through doing these blog posts for TLC, MD. It started out as a weekly requirement for AP English to post something, anything of our writing to our art. I often dreaded the deadlines because I often procrastinated. However, in the times I did not procrastinate, I found myself spilling my thoughts and emotions into the writing in order to write something relatable or something of great meaning. I found a purpose to write and share my story with others. I read works from many writers with works of their own, sharing their stories and experiences, some stories about the importance of writing to them. I found an importance in writing itself, for it was a stress relieving hobby in which I found something deeper. It influenced me to make my own goal, to write everyday- and write where it hurts the most. In the moments that one writes from where it hurts the most, the cliche is broken and the writing is instantly more real. My goal is to write everyday in the summer, whether it be a quote, a story, or a spoken word poem. Like a famous line says, “The pen is mightier than the sword”. Tell a story instead of spreading gossip. Spread words of wisdom instead of spreading trash talk. Change the world with a pen. That is my goal.

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The Perfect Body

I grew up overweight. Carrying a little more extra fat then the rest of my childhood friends took a toll on me. I never was first to be picked for kickball games in PE class. Older people always pinched my cheeks in which I cried a little inside every time. When people talked to my parents about me, my chubbiness was always brought up. I remember being compared to Dora the Explorer. Every time a weight loss commercial came up, a cousin would tell me that I should try it. Jeans weren’t exactly my cup of tea. Nothing fit right.

Insecurity is real. A muffintop with a pair of jeans is enough to spark negative thoughts in a teen’s mind. There’s so much things a girl wants, a “hot body” being one of them. Many girls don’t want to work and wait for what they want; they are drawn in by the romanticism of being skinny with lean abs and a bum to finish it off. Many girls find themselves desperate and lean into eating roughly 300 calories a day to lose weight fast. Most of the time, it doesn’t work. Bodies go into starvation mode, weight doesn’t get shed, eating disorders come out. It’s a tragedy that the image of having an ideal body may lead to so much sacrifice. In the end, is it all worth it? Girls and those struggling with body image should understand that sometimes the slower way is the better way. Eat healthy, exercise, sleep, educate yourself, talk to people. It’s that simple. Below is a video from one of my favorite fitness guru’s/ Pilates instructor, Cassey Ho. Her workouts have sparked a confidence in me that I never knew was possible to obtain.

Confidence is key.

Confidence is key.

Trials

There’s many trials in life. Trials are there to define a person. Some trials are harder than others, like getting over a loss. Some trials are from within the person, to accomplish a goal or become the best he/she can be. It’s easy to see trials as big giant monsters out to get you, easy to give up in. I am facing a trial right now. The trial is the result of laziness and procrastination. I came into junior year motivated with an goal to get straight A’s; here I am mid second semester withe the worst grades I’ve ever had. They result from laziness. Too lazy to wake up and finish an online assignment on time. Too lazy to type a whole legit essay. Too lazy for my own good. Too lazy to work on AP Art. The truth is, laziness builds up into its own consequence. When the consequence is made, out of it comes stress, lots and lots of stress. One starts doubting his/herself and there is no definite solution to the problem. I have dug a hole for myself, accomplishing not much in AP Art, so now I have about 16 art pieces in the time span of two or so weeks. I will be spending about 6-9 hours each day on art alone. I have never done such a thing in my life, but I believe that this is a trial along with balancing my other classes and raising up grades that I know my former hard-working self would be capable up. Now that I’m in a hole, I have a reason to get out. I made my own problem, and with about 2 months of school left, I gotta work hard and fix it. Trials will be there. Trials will be out to get you. But if you keep you head held high and work your butt off, it’s going to end better than you expected. Trials will come and go, and it is you that will change.

Trials will be worth it if you make them worth it.

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Living Out Life

Two weeks back, I played “Never Have I Ever” in a group. It is a game where people go in a circle, saying “Never have a ever *insert an experience they have never done here*. If someone in the circle has done that one thing, they have to put down one finger. If a person loses all fingers, they are out of the game. I was the first to get out in the game. That was the moment when I realized that I have experienced a lot in life, and that is a good thing. Cliche to say, but life IS short. I was happy to know that I had done a lot of things in my life that many people have not done, like travel out the country. Diverse experiences are what have made high school worth the work. In the past 3 years, I’ve been able to help out those in need and the community around me. I’ve been able to start my own club at school. I’ve been able to lead groups. Sure, my GPA is not the best and I am not in the top 100 in my class. But I know from that “Never Would I Ever” game that my experiences will take me far. While others may be in their room working and studying towards that 4.6 GPA, I am out in the community talking to and assisting elderly people. I am not the smartest book-wise, but I know the experiences are more important than the knowledge and harder to come by than those in the books

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Father Augustino, New Light

Yesterday I went to Orange County Youth Conference with my youth group. I didn’t know what to expect of it, since it was the first year the Catholic diocese would hold such an event for the youth. Coming into the event, it seemed upbeat just like the spirit at my own church. However, my real conversion did not start until the end when a Franciscan priest by the name of Father Augustino Torres gave his talk. He is Mexican and used his race as a humor, cracking jokes right and left. He had the audience at the edge of their seats, every word he said like it was carefully scripted and fool proof of not laughing. His energy that he brought into the conversation brought life to the orthodox roots of the Roman Catholic Church. He talked as he was excited of living as a Catholic. I had never seen a priest so passionate with what he was talking about. St that moment I realized that the Catholic Church wasn’t some Orthodox religion that is solely based on a bunch of old laws and the Old Testament from the bible. There was something special about the Catholic faith; it was the spirit that was brought out from the grace of God. There should be more priests like Father Augustino.

Only Exception

“And that was the day that I promised
I’d never sing of love
If it does not exist”

For the majority of my life growing up, I was questioning what love was. My dad was diagnosed with cancer when I was in the second grade. The treatments, chemo, and medications he went through made him someone who I did not see as a lovable creature. To be honest, cancer wasn’t really a big deal and I didn’t know what it was until my father showed signs of pain. It’s a normal human instinct, to not believe until it is seen. Growing up, my parents were fighting a lot mainly because my dad got mad a lot. I tuned it out, but as I grew up, I realized that the anger he put out wasn’t him. It was the pain from cancer.

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Tough Love to Love

I love my life. There is nothing I dislike. Everyday when I go to school, I have someone to talk to in each class. I am constantly surrounded by people from all walks of life with stories each different from another. There are people who do not like me, and I am okay with that. I have dreams that I have doubts about. All. The. Time. I stutter sometimes. Sometimes so bad that I make a fool out of myself as I try to get the point across that I participate in class. But it allows me to value what I say much more. I am sixteen and I’ve never had a boyfriend or had a boy confess his feelings to me like the way how media romanticizes it; I’ve seen all my friends around me get into relationships, third-wheeled one or more than a couple times.. and I am glad I am able to say that.

As I look on my Twitter feed, I can’t help but feel anger for everything that causes the insecurity and romanticism of sadness in this world. Teenage girls with posts that say “I’m lonely” or “all I want is a boy to like me back”. The posts I read on Twitter reminds me of what I like to call, my “Freshmeat phase”.

The “Freshmeat phase” I am talking about does not refer to freshman year of high school. Even though I experienced the phase in freshman year of high school,  it can relate at any age. My “Freshmeat phase” was a phase in which I was constantly insecure. I filled my insecurities by having crushes on boys.It sounds lame and completely normal, but let me emphasize. Every time I had a crush on a guy, I devoted my time to thinking about him, constantly distracted from everything else. When I liked a guy, he was the center of my life. He was solely the only thing I was interested in.

My “Freshmeat phase” was a phase that I didn’t know how lost I was as a person. I didn’t realize it until I told the first boy I liked in high school that I liked him and he told me that he didn’t like me back. It didn’t hit me until I realized that I was friend-zoned for the first time in my life. It didn’t hit me until I got over it six months later.

After my “Freshmeat phase” I changed as a person. I stopped having crushes on boy after boy, while every other girl around me talked about who they liked. As I was changing as a person, I felt left out from the hype of liking somebody and talking to best friends about it. Soon I found out that I didn’t mind it . It was a peaceful feeling, not letting a boy take over my life and emotions.

So why is this blog post called “Tough Love to Love”? It’s because the “Freshmeat phase” was the turning point to how I viewed love. I am so glad and blessed that I got friend-zoned freshman year of high school; it prepared me to be protective of my emotions for the years to come. I no longer looked for love just for the hype of it. I was learning to take the energy I would put into crushes and put it in myself.

Sophomore year, the year following the “Freshmeat phase” was the best year of my life. The acne that was caused by stressing out cleared away. I found myself super happy every single day, smiling everywhere even when no one was around me. That year, I third wheeled more than ever. I hung out with friends from all walks of life.  Felt left out from the hype of crushing on a guy more than ever. But that loneliness made me feel whole again. I was learning, and never have a felt more free.

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The year after, present day now, I don’t think about guys constantly. I can proudly say that I have gone a long way since freshman year. I’ve made goals that I know I will reach if I dedicate myself enough. My Spanish teacher once told me that everything happens for a reason, and the past two years have made it possible to see that what he said is completely true. I was friend-zoned in freshman year so I could enjoy the rest of my high school career, finding the love I was worthy of and capable of spreading.

A Blarb About Huntington Beach

The Huntington City Beach is one of Southern California’s most popular tourist areas, consisting of “909’ners” to surfers, runners, lifeguards, savvy ocean swimmers, and hipster teens who self proclaim themselves beach lovers. The Huntington City Beach is a place where any type of person can find something to enjoy themselves.

 The ocean never ceases to stop waving and greeting the guests that come along. The icy cold water at 8 am are a treat to the surfers, as they dive in it feels like a whole new world. In the sea, all problems and worries are washed away as one goes with the flow.

The service road resembles the path to the middle of nowhere; it is a place that unites bikers, gym rats, and beach hamburger and fries lovers all alike. People honk on their bikes, spreading an urgency to go down the whole west coast service road. Some people walk barefoot, the cement and gravel pressing on soft feet that causes them to get a real feel for the beach. One must be careful for nails and sharp edges though, cuts are common.

 

The endless stairway up to the pier gives a leg workout to whoever wishes to endure a little challenge and run up and down the steps. On the pier itself, one can sense something fishy for the fishermen are hard at work and reeling in catches, big and small. Once in a while, a loud “HURAH!!” comes out from a fisherman. Families take walks with each other for breakfast at Ruby’s, the diner at the end of the pier that overlooks the vast ocean.

Little kids dig holes of big and small sizes. Once in a while, a stranger does not pay attention to where he/ she is walking and sprains his/her foot when accidentally walking into the hole. beach