A Red Halloween

“Boys and girls of every age, won’t you like to see something strange?”

The end of the year is coming and soon, Fall will turn to Winter. I love this time of the year, this tone brings people together, there’s good food, memories are made in nearly every event that will occur, I especially am fond of decorating. Thinking up of ideas to display the holiday spirit, seeing the creativity in nearly every house and family. Even the holiday themed movies are interesting, one in particular was the Book of Life.

Produced by one of my favorite directors, Guillermo del Toro, my whole family was looking forward to seeing the movie that was based on the Mexican Day of the Dead. The movie was funnier than anticipated, but it revealed to me, how little exposure I’ve gotten to the holiday. Halloween came natural to me, I get more than a kick at the idea of scaring people, but that’s not what Día del Muertos represents.

This holiday is about family, it’s about honor and memory, ultimately it’s about love. It’s nothing new to hear about Latin American morals surrounding the idea of family, and this holiday fits perfectly in that. Our loved ones who have passed away continue to live on happily so long as we remember them fondly in our hearts. They are insulted when we cry over their deaths but would rather that we tell stories of the best times we’ve had with them. To laugh over the things that make them so dear to us, is the best way to honor them, it doesn’t matter whether or not there were things left unsaid or regrets between two parties, what matters is that Life goes on, that there is love present our hearts.

The love between two people are said to overcome any distance, why not the gap between this world and the next? Isn’t that the whole concept of Christianity? That God’s love is so grand, that it covers the whole whole and people’s hearts, is the message that Christ has been trying to tell us all these years.

Heh, it warms the heart to think this way.

Love. It helps us look back with courage and fondness, but to also be able to look forward, to make the best of our lives and to not be complacent with apathy or cowardice.

I thought about why we never celebrated Día del Muertos and, much to my regret, it was just something that we never really did. Whether it was just too painful or there were no fond memories to reflect upon, I wasn’t introduced to the celebration of it until that movie, The Book of Life. Because now I have someone to remember, someone whom I love and have had good memories with. I’m not sure if the rest of my family will want to participate, but at the very least, I still have this journal.

This year will be interesting for me, to celebrate Halloween and Día del Muertos, to terrify others with the face of death and then to sit with him and, reflecting and laughing. This will be my strange holiday.

Smiling at Death

Memento Mori, Bushido, Y.O.L.O.

It seems that every generation has their own reminder that Death is near by and that something must be done. Personally, I think that the last one was used purely for the sake of doing stupid things.

In either case, there is truth in all of these, “Death is always around.” But what is often mistaken is how this should be taken, some people see this as an excuse to live life without consequences, others that one should plan for as many occasions as possible; but for me, I’ve heard both extremes and from that I’ve found a balance between the pros and cons of both.

Honor.

It’s a bit old-fashioned, but I believe that if one lives honorably, they retain the “no regrets” aspect without perverting it beyond a point, as well as the “be prepared” aspect that the other extreme favors.

I mean think about it, I can live and have fun, but not bang any girl simply for the sake of hooking up, I can train my body and save my money for a rainy day without being scared of every single possible outcome and have days where I can relax as well.

To have honor to me, means to hold yourself to a particular standard, so long as you meet those standards, on any level of your life, then you can honestly say, “I have no regrets.” Even if you just died then and there, that standard helps keep you in check, on any point in your life, even if you’re in the middle of transitions, which is basically more often than not.

Imagine the self that you want to be: courageous, smart, likable, healthy, witty, tough, always says the right thing at the right time, and so on. This is the standard that you have to hold yourself to.

This is who you want to be, but that you aren’t right now, for X reasons, and that’s normal, but that’s the thing, if you say, “I’m not this and this is normal.” You’ve shut yourself down, then and there. You need to say, “I’m not this but I’d like to be.” this is the norm. It should be normal to attempt to make little changes to your current character in order to resemble your standard character. It’s amazing to think that nearly any aspect that one desires can be obtained if they simply worked hard enough for it.

For me, I want to live without any regrets, hence the Bank girl, I don’t want to look back and say, “If only I had asked her out, If this, If that, etc” I’d rather ask her out, be rejected, and then move on. So for me, at this point in time, I need ask this girl out, not for some depressing emotion or for some societal obligation, but because in order for me to remain honorable to myself, in order for me to continue to say, “I have no regrets”; this is what I must do.

Granted, my life isn’t hanging on the response this girl gives me, but if I have little regrets here and there, then I’ll eventually have huge regrets later on. If I chicken out at this small incident, then it’s no wonder why I would chicken out at something major, like that accident that happened right before me. I need to test my courage by actually doing something that scares me, in this case, the only two endings this could have are:

  1. She says, “Yes”
  2. She says, “No”

So what is there to fear? Death.

If I don’t live the life in the way that I would want to live it, then I’m scared of Death, because of business left undone and things left unsaid, which are basically Regrets.

In order to not be scared of Death, but in fact smile at Death, I need to live without fear, without hesitation, and ultimately without regrets. Because if I have done this, what is there to fear? I’ve done all that I wanted to do, and I did it by what I thought was right. There would be no reason for me to be ashamed in front of my family, my friends and even God.

And that’s the whole point of this, God didn’t give us Death to scare us, we gave it to ourselves. It came with the knowledge of what is Right and what is Wrong. Being scared of something and not facing, it is simply the wrong way to approach it, you’ve abandoned your goals, and you’ve let the fear control you, and eventually you’ll live Life the wrong way.

It’s only when you’re scared of something and then you face it, does it become a good thing to be scared, to face it, and to live Life the right way.

“I knew a man who once said, ‘Death smiles at us all, all a man can do is smile back.'” – Maximus Decimus Meridius (Gladiator)

The Year of 1987

Day 17: Hop on the internet and search for the biggest news stories in the year you were born.Infoplease is a great resource for this. Think about how these news stories, or even statistics, may have shaped your childhood or who you are today. For example, the year I was born, it was discovered that 98% of American households had at least one television set. I could write about how television influenced my generation, and continues to do so today, either positively or negatively.

OK so for 1987, I got:

World Events:

  • William Buckley, American hostage in Lebanon, reported slain (Jan. 20).
  • Iraqi missiles kill 37 in attack on US frigate Stark in Persian Gulf (May 17); Iraqi president Hussein apologizes (May 18).
  • Prime Minister Thatcher wins rare third term in Britain (June 11).
  • Klaus Barbie, 73, Gestapo wartime chief in Lyon, sentenced to life by French court for war crimes (July 4).

U.S. Events:

Economics:

  • US GDP (1998 dollars):   $4,692.30 billion
  • Federal spending:   $1003.91 billion
  • Federal debt:   $2346.1 billion
  • Median Household Income
  • (current dollars):  $26,061
  • Consumer Price Index:   113.6
  • Unemployment:   6.2%
  • Cost of a first-class stamp:   $0.22

Sports:

  • Super Bowl: NY Giants d. Denver (39-20)
  • World Series: Minnesota d. St. Louis Cardinals (4-3)
  • NBA Championship: LA Lakers d. Boston (4-2)
  • Stanley Cup: Edmonton d. Philadelphia (4-3)
  • Wimbledon: Women: Martina Navratilova d. S. Graf (7-5 6-3); Men: Pat Cash d. I. Lendl (7-6 6-2 7-5)
  • Kentucky Derby Champion: Alysheba
  • NCAA Basketball Championship: Indiana d. Syracuse (74-73)
  • NCAA Football Champions: Miami-FL (12-0-0)

Entertainment:

Events:

  • Though African, Latin American and other genres of international music have been around for centuries, a group of small, London-based labels coin the term “world music,” which helps record sellers find rack space for the eclectic music.
  • thirtysomething debuts on ABC and departs from typical dramas, featuring analytical, self-absorbed baby-boomer characters.

Movies:

  • Moonstruck, Wall Street, The Last Emperor, Fatal Attraction

Books:

Science:

  • Prozac released for use in US by Eli Lilly & Company. Background: Health & Nutrition
  • AZT wins FDA approval for use in the treatment of AIDS.
  • An international treaty signed in Montreal calls for a 50% reduction in the use of CFCs by the year 2000 (Sept. 16). Background: environmentalism
  • Richard Branson and Per Lindstrand make the first transatlantic hot-air balloon flight. 2,790 miles from Sugarloaf Mountain, Maine, to Ireland Virgin Atlantic Flyer (July 2–4). Background: Famous Firsts in Aviation

Deaths:

 

A Punishment to Some; To Others, a Gift; To Many, a Favor

Day 11Memento mori. “Remember that you will die.” Admittedly, this isn’t the most pleasant topic. There is, however, great benefit in meditating on the reality that at some point, you will in fact die. It motivates you to live the life right now that you want to be living. Meditate on this, and write out your thoughts. Does death scare you? Does it motivate you? It’s okay to be honest.

This quote was from Seneca, talking about Death. Heh, Death, my old friend. It seems like when I was young, Death was always around me, in such close encounters, that it can’t be anything more than a miracle that I’m still here in this life. But now that I’m older, Death has taken on a different role in my life. My Father’s own death was just… so sudden and unexpected, we never really got to prepare for it fully, save for the weeks when he had to stay at his job to save on gas, and didn’t come home. Here, Death feels like a cruel thief, stealing someone so important to me, but my Faith reminds me that Death has but only one Master, and that is God, Himself. Yet, my Father lived a life how he thought was the right way to live, despite the things that would’ve liked to have seen, he had all he ever needed within us.

So now to think that I will die, this is a rather interesting thing to ponder over, because some part of me thinks that I’m still young, so I’ve got that idiotic idea that I’ll never die,  but it’s mostly because I’m genually familiar with Death, I can remember that day when all I wanted to do was sleep, not knowing that I’d be sleeping for eternity, and how my family tried to hide their fears under their determination to keep me awake. In the years following, I’ve lived life with a flavor that was unique, and yet, as time has passed, that flavor is all, but gone.

Now, I don’t fear Death, I fear the unknown. Death to me, is like I said before, an old friend. I know my life isn’t even CLOSE to being finished, and yet, I don’t fear the idea that Death can come for me at any time. But I do use the death of others as a motivator, at least in the sense of trying to become stronger/faster/tougher: “What if something fell on the girls? Will I be strong enough to help?” etc. But my own Death? Nah, I’m fine. I even sometimes think about my funeral, who would show, what would happen afterwards, and so on. Heh, it’s kinda fun thinking about Death, but that could also be coming from the mixture of my Mexican side, who respects Death; my Youthfulness, who doesn’t think will die at all; and my Catholic faith, which tells me not to fear Death for it will be bringing me closer to God. I guess in the end, I feel like I owe this Life a lot of things before I meet Death, but then again, it’s up to God to determine that.

Hitting the Ground, Running

Oh man, these last few days have been hectic!

  1. On Saturday, I’ve learned that a good friend died, his service is on Friday, He was the head usher, who asked me to be one, I was completely shocked upon hearing it.
  2. My Bro-in-law got a job that’s put him 5 minutes driving from the new house.
  3. The process of us getting a new house, has been progressing faster than we all originally planned, so I’m going to have to start packing more rapidly.
  4. With everyone moving around, I’ll be doing most of the work myself along with JP, an entire house of 5 and only 2 people packing, me being one of them.
  5. All this, along with acting as the Parent for the girls, and taking care of anything else miscellaneous that can occur in the family
  6. And finally, trying to apply to school and stay in shape by keeping with up with my workouts.

Needless to say, these next couple of days will be nothing short of interesting!

Confidence is a bit lacking…

A few weeks ago, I went to confession as a good Catholic man should, and this particular priest, who has a reputation for rambling, was rambling about how I should do things to avoid sin, so he eventually asked me what I wanted to do with my life, and I replied to become a doctor, and he told me if I should consider something else… Now here’s the interesting part…

I know it in my mind, body, and soul that I want nothing more in this life than to be a doctor, with every fiber of my being, and yet, I’ve found that when questioned with even the slightest possibility of doing something else, I become hesitant, my voice lowers, my vocabulary shortens, and it seems like I’m almost scared to defend myself in sticking to my goal…

So I was telling the Priest that I cannot see myself and anything else but a doctor, but to his eyes, it must’ve seemed like I didn’t know what I was talking about, or like I had no desire whatsoever. Well, whatever he thought, I’m certain he couldn’t have thought I was as adamant about being a doctor as I claim to be.

So what is it? Why do I act like a frightened mouse when someone comes even close to questioning my motives for wanting to become a doctor. Or even questioning my character, for that matter.

I remember an interview with a representative of a medical school, and when he questioned why some of my grades aren’t perfect, I would explain to him that there are more than a plethora of situations that would require my attention, some family, some friends, and I threw in, “I’m the kind of guy that people would come to for help” And he gave me a scenario,

“a Friend asked for your help, but you need to study for a test the next day, what would you do?”

I told him, I’d help that friend, and then he said with disappointment in his voice, “And there goes that test.” I tried to sound confident but it probably sounded like a whisper when I said, “I cannot deny who I am.” but he didn’t look up from his papers.

So, other than scratching that school from my list of potential Medical schools, that moment where my confidence is shaken, despite what I knew was the right choice, has haunted me for some time.

This is a problem I need to focus on.

But that’s the thing, I have MORE than enough reason to be confident, I’d even go so far as say be angry about this career path! Yet, something in me, doesn’t use it, it doesn’t reach into this pool of motivation, full of various things, when other people have just one and they make it work. Here I am, with so much motivation and yet it’s all gone when it comes to defending who I am or what I do.

Maybe that’s the thing, “A man with a watch knows what time it is. A man with two watches is never sure.” – Segal’s Law, this is describing the fact that conflicting information can cause loads of problems, especially when it comes to making a decision… So in my case, I am seeing these things as separate reasons, the Death of my Father, the Disadvantaged Upbringing, the Earning of my Name, The Path for my Nieces, it all adds up to one thing: Sacrifice.

All of these things revolve around Sacrifice. It was Sacrifice that pushed me to Medicine, it was Sacrifice that carries me, it’s Sacrifice that I wake up to, and it’s Sacrifice that drives me to keep going. I’m going to have to REALLY think about this, because this is what will be the center of everything! What brings balance to my universe, the singular method to all the madness that I will experience, the spark that ignites a raging inferno, will be Sacrifice.

“Sacrifice, which is the passion of great souls, has never been the law of societies.” – Henri Frederic Amiel, has spoken the words perfectly.

Even more Changes

Man, these last few days, I’ve been staring at a blank screen wracking my brain, trying to figure out what to write about. It didn’t help when I had a desire to write something. But I’ve come to realize that there are a lot more changes going on in my house, for one, I’m completely re-arranging my room, it’s a bit difficult to sleep  because even my bed feels strange.

But the idea is that of the classic flame metaphor, “Getting rid of the old things to create space for new things.” These last few days, it’s all been about donating the old stuff and putting new things in its place. 

I’ve always liked the idea of donating things to places so that others can get something new from something old. Heh, this stems from the majority of my childhood wardrobe being consistent of Hand-me-downs from my elder siblings, so for me, if it doesn’t bear sentimental value, then I’ll give it to others. But it’s always interesting to see what you can dig up from the past by trying to make a better future. I’ve found old shirts and random objects, but nothing of importance. 

Yet, to change things requires effort and persistence. I mean cleaning up years of junk makes one break a sweat, no doubt, but all changes that are needed, never happen overnight. Even Death takes time to adjust and accept what has happened, tears must be shed first, and the stages of grieving must be performed in order for one to reach the end of acceptance. 

Maybe the changes are subtle, maybe they’re grand, the idea is that one must always try to find a way to change for the better. Granted, not all changes will be for the better, but the choice on who you are is and always be yours, when something good or bad happens, it has always been your choice to take it one way or another way. I’ve always tried to stay optimistic, but I’m not perfect, when my Father died, I was certain that my Mother would follow, due to her poor health and her attachment to my Father, yet here she is, still around, laughing, praying, still breathing with her one lung. 

I guess I needed something of a break from writing into this journal, these last few days, I’ve been to busy to ponder over things, and when the hardest jobs were done, my mind started pondering again. So I’ve got some things lined up, for the future, but for now, I need to keep making changes until I’m at my optimized conditions to work to my best!

So on that note, I’ve got some work to do, submitting papers, filling out things, and just plainly cleaning on all sorts of levels.

Trust lies in Services Rendered

When I first helped my Father on one of our cars, I was not allowed to do anything. I wasn’t allowed to tighten a screw, I wasn’t allowed to hold a wrench, I wasn’t allowed to pour the oil into the funnel, I wasn’t allowed to do anything, nothing but to sit there and watch him, maybe, just maybe, I can hand him a tool he wanted, but that was when I was able to correctly identify which tool he wanted.

When I finally got my license, I wasn’t allowed to drive for anyone. Regardless that I passed my test, I wasn’t allowed to drive for the family, even to the store nearby, I wasn’t allowed to drive for my brothers to pick up something quick, I wasn’t even allowed to drive myself unless it was absolutely necessary for me to, which it wasn’t until I finally got my own car. I wasn’t allowed to do anything but sit there and watch, maybe, just maybe, I can give the driver some help by telling them whether or not it was safe to turn, but that was only when I can see the road correctly, and only when asked.

This was years ago. And as time passed, slowly I was involved more and more into being trusted upon in doing things.

My Father first let me give him the tools he wanted, then he let me go underneath the car with him to see what he was doing, then he started letting me tighten the nuts and bolts and screws that needed it, then he gave me small jobs to do on my own, then in the end, when a job needed to be done, my hands were right there in the car working along side my Father’s.

Initially, I took the Bus to get to college, but then my family let me take the van to get groceries with supervision, then they let me go without it, then they would let me drive for small recreational things, like pizza, while they simply went along for the ride. When I finally got my car, I was allowed to drive myself to school, then I was trusted to drive myself and others to school, and then in the end, I’m considered the “Patient and Good Driver.”

I was, at first, the one who wasn’t allowed simply because I didn’t know any better, I had no experience, I could have hurt myself if I was trusted with something while not seeing what its purpose is initially. But, my patience and curiosity, gained me the trust that allowed me to not only work alongside my Father and drive my family, but to an effect, display that I am someone to be trusted.

Now, rather than worry about trusting me with things, I am now currently the first person to go to in order to get something done. I’ve become someone that everyone can rely on, a dream of mine that also  has ties to my wanting to be a doctor. But, I always feel honored and glad when someone trusts me, it not only brings said person and myself closer, but it tells me subliminally that I’m still a good man, something that I’m constantly striving to be.

It’s strange really, It’s not being given a thing that tells me that I am trusted, it’s being given a responsibility, a chore even, that tells me that I am trusted, that tells me that I’ve shown maturity and patience, that I’m worthy of being given a higher responsibility. This is solidified by two separate sources, one, a quote: “In order to become a great leader, you must be come a great follower.” I can’t remember who said that, although I’m certain that I have the author in my Quote Book. The second source, the Bible: Matthew 23:11 “But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.” Now, this was spoken by Christ, himself, and I know for a fact that I am not the greatest in this household!

But the idea is there: in order to grow strong in this life, you need to start at the bottom. Heh, something I started saying over at NerdFitness.com “Everyone starts at Level 1.” And in my case, I’ve faced Death in my youth several times, perhaps even more than most people, and all that I got when I remember these near-death experiences, refined by my faith and Catholicism, is a wonderful desire to earn my life here.

I tell everyone, I have to do good, be good, keep trying, try harder, can’t stay still, keep moving forward, keep looking up, keep reaching, pushing, fighting, laughing, smiling. And usually in these moments, that’s enough for some people, but no one asks me “why?” and why I keep doing all these things, why I’m suffering like this with a smile on my face, or why I keep going forward despite the odds, and that’s because I haven’t earned my place yet. If I were to die, right now, my last thoughts would be, “not yet” because, I haven’t done enough to repay my debt to God, to earn this life that was spared from Death’s grip on numerous occasions. This is why, I’ve chosen to live an honorable life, I don’t disrespect my parents, I don’t drink or smoke or do drugs or even sleep around with promiscuous women. I’ve chosen to live a life without regrets and a life with as little selfish desire as possible… Because, let’s be honest, being a doctor is something I want, I don’t know what God has in mind for me… But this is why my mindset is vastly different from other people my age, it’s strange to see them find some ironic sense of accomplishment in doing self-destructive things, while wondering why I don’t follow suit.

My belief is that, I’m not being a good man because I want to, but ultimately for God. This one small belief has an unbelievable large range in various places in my life, from hanging out with friends, to when I’m by myself, and believe me, there are moments when I want to do something, but then I’m reminded of this, and the next moment finds me forcing myself to step away from something I would really want to do, but cannot because said action or thing would go against this belief. And I can’t go against the ideal, because that would be thinking only in selfish terms and I cannot think selfishly because I was given a very important responsibility: A Life.

Ultimately, my final honor and responsibility, is the very life that I live. I’m trusted with this vessel of vast potential, and it’s up to me to make sure that at the end, it’s as good a vessel as possible. Not because I want it to be, but because God wants me to; without even asking me in some grand vision, I’ve found that I’m meant to not live on what I want, but on what I believe is morally right and just. The best way to repay God for all the times he’s saved this life is to return it to him with as much good works and faith as I can fill it with. And when I do return it, I’ll return it with a smile on my face, because of all of the things I will have seen, the smiles on the faces of the people I will have interacted with, the strength people will say I have given them, and all of the things people will say I have left them, when I imagine that God will have made me a witness to all these things, I can’t help but smile. I smile because I will have been useful, because I will be able to rest in peace, and because I know I will have finally earned my place in Heaven, simply because I was trusted with this one small thing.

I want to face the end of this Journey with the ability to say, “I have no regrets…”

Trying hard to feel bad

I’ve received some news today. An uncle has passed away.

My uncle Manuel, brother of my late-Father died recently.

Such a strange loss. I was never really close to him, to be utterly honest, I can’t even put a face to the name. Yet, he is family, so obviously, this should mean something, at least something more than the words that carried the news.

But you can’t be sad for something you never had, and maybe in the back of my mind, I might recognize his face in some family reunion in the past, but with or without context and association, I’ve got nothing.

I mean, my Grandfather, despite the lack of communication, had a sense of welcomeness about him. I never felt distant or estranged with him, despite the language barrier. With my Uncles and Aunts, there’s a lot more complexity in the way. In my young eyes, I saw them not as relatives but more like they’re family friends of my parents, there was hardly a sign or indication that they– err we were related. Family reunions felt more like a gather of people. Visits had no indication of blood-ties. There’s just nothing there for me to see that I’m related to these people who are hugging me and telling me that they remember me from years ago, or from when I was blank high.

Upon writing this, I’m thinking about how the girls see me. I am their Mother’s Brother, so do I show that? Am I seen as something more than another adult in their eyes? Do I earn that title of “Uncle” and fulfill the responsibilities involved?

Heh, then I remember them saying that I’m their favorite uncle, the last time they were here, and then they leave, and each time, they come back, I’m hoping that I can still be considered their Uncle, I’m not aiming for “The Favorite” but I’m aiming to be simply recognized as to have a bond more than just the word ‘Uncle’, I want something with the girls that I never got from my own Uncles and Aunts: A Bond.

I knew my Grandfather had a Library of Wisdom and Knowledge that I would’ve loved to spend years to tap, and he was gone, and I knew I had lost something when he passed, but now I’ve lost an Uncle, a man I almost never knew on a personal level, I don’t know what he did, what his interests were, or even where he’s placed on the family lineage, or whether or not he’s older or younger than my own parents! Granted, I forget how old my own siblings are, but I can at least place them in Chronological order. And I’m more than confident my own parents can do more than just list them in order, all 14+ Uncles and Aunts on both sides!

But now, there’s something missing. a Bond involves 2 parties, one on each side. You see, my sister and Brother-in-law are well aware of distant relatives being commonplace, especially among Mexican and Hispanic families, so they put effort for the benefit of their daughters, to have them be aware of something beyond the simple family structure, which is also common in Hispanic families.

Neither my parents nor my Aunts and Uncles went above and beyond, like my Sister and her Husband did, for whatever their reasons are, this gap now between relatives is ultimately the result. I can’t shed tears over someone I didn’t know existed. As sad as it sounds, hearing this doesn’t do anything to me, I didn’t even know I had an Uncle Manuel!!

Sigh…

But that’s the problem, isn’t it?

Like my grandfather, he also had experiences and knowledge that I could’ve learned from. Experiences, jokes, a point of view that I could’ve compared life to, lost perspective is a lost treasure. I guess if I was trying to find some sort of reason to be sad of his passing, I would see that I could’ve had something with the man who’s gone. I mean thinking about it, it’s like a cheat to get a new friend, this guy would’ve felt obligated to talk to me because I’m related to him. I mean, how often does someone felt like they needed a new friend or a new perspective on life?

I should’ve taken the opportunity to at least try to get to know them, but even now my Spanish is shaky and broken, I don’t know if that’ll be seen as disrespectful or just plain ignorant. Not to mention that I would be representing my own family, and that includes whatever bad blood that lies between them and my parents, so if they had any reason to be against my parents, they would place themselves against me. My being the one left outside the loop, I would’ve been subject to hostility from an unknown source. It’s a risk either way.

So, as I try to find sentimentalism in nothing, I will see that this, in of itself, is a cause for sadness. Because there is nothing to be sad over when someone of my Kin dies, that will be the reason for my sadness. I will mourn him because I have absolutely no reason to. And that itself, is a valid reason to miss him.

All the Help I can get

One week from today, I will be going to a class at 8:30 PM at UCR, It’s a class that helps you by teaching you about the MCAT, and preparing for it. From the Princeton Review company, I will attend their class from Monday to Thursday, for the next several weeks.

The class costs $2099, and how was I able to come up with the money? I asked for help.

At the intervention of my sister, I was reminded by her and by my Mother, that it’s ok to ask for help, especially for things that will assist me on my path to Medical school. The money is no problem, but for me, I’m hesitant, extremely hesitant in asking for help, particularly in asking for money.

Heh, to speak the truth, it’s irrational, completely irrational, but let me try to reason it out.

I have this fear that if I asked for money/a Favor, and I don’t keep up my end of the bargain, ie. I fail the class or I can’t pay them back at the agreed time, then they get disappointed, people who trust me, get disappointed in me, I feel as if I’ve violated their trust, regardless of the fact that it’s something over something trivial or not.

I think it goes back to high school, with an old friend of mine, who I can honestly say I was in love with at the time. We lived close together, so we hung out a lot, we were really close as friends, and for the life of me, I have no idea why I didn’t ask her out. Meh, that’s for another time.

Well, when we were in the middle of hanging out, I had to cut it short because of my curfew, and needless to say, she didn’t like it. Although she would let me go home, she often expressed her distaste of my having to leave. And I think, that is where I got this irrationality from, because well, since I liked her so much, I didn’t want her to be disappointed in me. So, my mind has tried to prevent this, altogether by avoid situations that bear the possibility of failure, when someone has placed trust in me.

Now the irrational part: It’s purely ridiculous to have this state of mind, when my dreams and ideals are to be the one that people depend on in serious, life-or-death situations! I want to be the one who’s the man for the job when trying to save lives, and I know that I won’t be able to save them all, so there will be dark times when people will look to me for answers that I don’t have. And they’ll be disappointed in my ability to save their loved ones, disappointed in me.

So in the end, I’ll be faced with this situation anyways! But I think that, it’ll be easier in the later scenario because in the end, I will have walled up my heart so that I can continue working, and trying to help others. But with family and friends, people close to me, people that I will see everyday, to disappoint them, is far worse because they don’t disappear at the end of the day, they’ll forever have that memory associated with me, that I’ve failed them, in one way or another.

“You’re human, let it go.” comes to mind, but, I know that I’m meant to be better than this, it’s not like I’m trying to deny my humanity, but I cannot let myself mess up like this, especially over trivial things. It’s not the compulsiveness of a perfectionist, nor is it ideals of obtaining a perfect track record, but it’s the idea that I HATE disappointing people. And so I find myself doing things that I don’t want to do, hanging out in study groups, when I study best on my own, refusing to hang out when I really want to, and so on.

I’m getting better at it though, I’m starting to accept the fact that I cannot do everything on my own, and that I will need help from time to time. Especially since my assistance will come from other doctors, nurses, PA’s, Anesthesiologists, Hospice, Lawyers, RT’s, EMT’s and even janitors and volunteers, people that I will have to learn to get along with, learn to depend on, and they will depend on me.

We will learn to work together, especially when the moment comes when someone’s life hangs in the balance. I will need their help, and there will come a time, when they will come to me for help. Sure, it takes one person to start a revolution, but that revolution requires the movement of the people of the world.

And that’s what I’ll need to remember, that I am not alone in this fight in trying to become a doctor, there are others who want me to be also, and they’ll help me in my endeavors when I need them.

There’s always a helping hand when one really looks for it.