Written Works

The Art of Gratitude

“My piece is about the importance of gratitude. I also discussed how it improves our mental health, connects us with others, and strengthens our relationships with the people we love.”

The Good in the Unexpected

“This is a poem to remind me to always look out for the things that make me happy and to never forget to enjoy the world while we still have it.”

The Test

“My entry shows an instance where I am struggling with a test. It shows that I can easily doubt myself. It also shows that I start observing others for a hint towards something when I am not confident in myself.”

Attention

“My entry explains how I feel about this generation’s importance towards mental health. I believe that many people don’t have anywhere to turn to when needing help. We need attention and to be considered. People struggle daily and this has to be noticed. In order to fix this situation, many have to recognize what is happening first. Changing this lack of help can strengthen our future and help our society.”

Skin

“My poem targets generational trauma and the longterm effects it can have on teens through adulthood. I wanted to compare skin to the perception one may have of their personality, their features, and their body. With time it gets easier and you don’t shy away from the figurative and literal mirror so much. I feel teens need a reminder that it is okay to be vulnerable, open minded, and let go. We are our biggest critic but also our strongest support system and only we know how to resolve the problems we have with ourselves. It is a poem about aging, forgiving yourself, and how digging inwards and allowing your inner child to process trauma is much better for your health than continuing the detrimental cycle you may have been a victim of as a child.”

Role Model

This story brings me back to elementary school. With all the discussion about how teachers are being treated by parents and administrators, I wanted to try and see the perspective of a school environment as a teacher and what struggles they face. I have had a love for learning since kindergarten and that would have never been the case if I didn’t have teachers guiding me and nurturing that appreciation. I’ve created this piece to give hope to the future of education and teaching.

Glimmer and Shine

I chose the category Hope because it is one that I have a lot of experience with. My sister is two years older than me and one year sober from opioids. Writing about addiction comes fairly naturally to me; and I think that’s because I watched her struggle for so many years. I want other kids struggling with substance abuse to know that there is hope in recovery, and that getting help is never a bad thing.

A Mirror Worth Your Life

My piece is about some of the struggles that me and countless other trans people experience on a daily basis. It belongs in the justice section of the writing challenge because I am writing about issues that pertain to our society and social justice issues. This poem is my way of bringing light to some of the emotions that come up when I hear people misgender or disrespect me or anyone else that does not identify as cisgender. In one part of the poem I refer to myself using he/him pronouns because it reflects some of the self doubt and gender dysphoria I feel when explaining to people that I am trans. While it does include some dark components, my poem is not necessarily meant to depress or dishearten people, rather it is meant to educate people on how their actions can affect gender queer individuals, especially youth. The second to last stanza of the poem touches on the high suicide rates among trans youth and the last stanza and last line explain my apprehension to being apologized to because it makes me feel like I’m in the wrong. Sometimes an apology is necessary, but when overdone, it actually has negative effects in this situation.

Fighters

My entry relates back to the required submission criteria of hope, as I talk about towards the end of the poem my hope for the next generation, and how I want the standards of society towards girls and women to be changed. A description of my piece is: My poem dives deeply right into the raw realness of what so many girls in today’s world go through partly due to society’s standards. How we suffer to try to fit the mold and the cost of it, and how it’s just not worth it. My piece circles back around to my hope that the narrative can be changed, and that the next generation of girls won’t have to suffer like this one.