How To Let Go And Say Goodbye

How To Let Go And Say Goodbye

How writing can impact those around you but only after you help yourself first.

I decided to start writing for the Odyssey during one of the most turbulent times in my life. At 19, I was being forced to reevaluate myself as both an individual and as a member of the community around me. Needless to say, things were not great.

I work as a Writing Tutor here at ASU, and the only place in which I felt utter calm and unemotional was at work. Assisting other students with their papers, diving from my world into theirs, was such a fantastic escape that I wondered how to carry that escape home with me. I hadn’t written anything for myself since middle school and, when I first sat down to write, I felt burdened with the enumerated amount of things I wanted to say.

I truly got my voice back. I traversed through the various topics and avenues that writing can take on, and I pushed myself to write unlimitedly; not bogged down by research backed arguments, but rather stories I knew – the things that only I knew how to say.

After my hospitalization I was faced with two options; I could tell everyone about it all or I could keep it to myself. While I didn’t want to run and scream from the mountains shouting what had happened, I wanted to be able to control the narrative. The truth always comes out, and I figured if I addressed the situation immediately people would understand my perspective and maybe I could assist others in similar states of mind.

Writing for the Odyssey has been a freeing experience, but the way that my voice has adapted itself is no longer fitting with the personal narrative voice. The way that I am best able to express emotions (something I am very bad at) is through poetry, which is ironic because I absolutely detest poetry.

So, while I have thoroughly enjoyed my time here at the Odyssey, I do believe it’s my time to say farewell. I think I need to spend more time pursuing what will further my mental health and, while writing about it has been beneficial, I think some of this journey must occur behind the scenes.

I hadn’t truly realized how public my writing would be and that I’d be subjected to the views and opinions of people I’d never met before. I was, of course, aware that others would be reading my writing, I just hadn’t grasped the true scope of people that my words were reaching.

I truly hope that my writing has positively impacted you. I love finding new avenues with which to express myself, and I hope that writing honestly about the things that are impacting me or the globe in general has had some benefit to your life. I want to continue to help those who are going through their mental health journey. I want to be the voice of reason and an advocate for mental health reform, but I cannot truly do so right now as I am still working on finding balance in my own recovery.

I wish you all the best, thank you for reading what I have to say. As always, I hope to remain a person that people can go to if they are struggling mentally or at least someone who can send you in the right direction. Until we meet again.


Cover Image Credit: Marii Krueger / Instagram

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An Open Letter to the Person Who Still Uses the "R Word"

Your negative associations are slowly poisoning the true meaning of an incredibly beautiful, exclusive word.

What do you mean you didn't “mean it like that?" You said it.

People don't say things just for the hell of it. It has one definition. Merriam-Webster defines it as, "To be less advanced in mental, physical or social development than is usual for one's age."

So, when you were “retarded drunk" this past weekend, as you claim, were you diagnosed with a physical or mental disability?

When you called your friend “retarded," did you realize that you were actually falsely labeling them as handicapped?

Don't correct yourself with words like “stupid," “dumb," or “ignorant." when I call you out. Sharpen your vocabulary a little more and broaden your horizons, because I promise you that if people with disabilities could banish that word forever, they would.

Especially when people associate it with drunks, bad decisions, idiotic statements, their enemies and other meaningless issues. Oh trust me, they are way more than that.

I'm not quite sure if you have had your eyes opened as to what a disabled person is capable of, but let me go ahead and lay it out there for you. My best friend has Down Syndrome, and when I tell people that their initial reaction is, “Oh that is so nice of you! You are so selfless to hang out with her."

Well, thanks for the compliment, but she is a person. A living, breathing, normal girl who has feelings, friends, thousands of abilities, knowledge, and compassion out the wazoo.

She listens better than anyone I know, she gets more excited to see me than anyone I know, and she works harder at her hobbies, school, work, and sports than anyone I know. She attends a private school, is a member of the swim team, has won multiple events in the Special Olympics, is in the school choir, and could quite possibly be the most popular girl at her school!

So yes, I would love to take your compliment, but please realize that most people who are labeled as “disabled" are actually more “able" than normal people. I hang out with her because she is one of the people who has so effortlessly taught me simplicity, gratitude, strength, faith, passion, love, genuine happiness and so much more.

Speaking for the people who cannot defend themselves: choose a new word.

The trend has gone out of style, just like smoking cigarettes or not wearing your seat belt. It is poisonous, it is ignorant, and it is low class.

As I explained above, most people with disabilities are actually more capable than a normal human because of their advantageous ways of making peoples' days and unknowingly changing lives. Hang out with a handicapped person, even if it is just for a day. I can one hundred percent guarantee you will bite your tongue next time you go to use the term out of context.

Hopefully you at least think of my friend, who in my book is a hero, a champion and an overcomer. Don't use the “R Word". You are way too good for that. Stand up and correct someone today.

Cover Image Credit: Kaitlin Murray

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News Flash: 'Building The Wall' Is Still A Dumb Idea And Always Will Be

The government is still partially shutdown because of funding for the wall. Really?


A man who is a strong supporter of building the wall told me this metaphor: If you don't want the wrong people walking into your backyard, you put a fence up. We don't want the wrong people coming to America, so we put a wall up. I respect people's political beliefs, and because of this, I want to share mine.

I believe that President Trump demanding money to build a border wall is dumb.

It's hard to believe so many people really think that this "build a wall" has everything to do about border security. It's just inhumane and wrong.

Literally, the most notorious drug lord of Mexico has shed light about how he smuggles the drug into the U.S. They have brought it through fishing boats, trucks going through the legal point of entry, underground tunnel, but not through unwalled parts. The half of million pounds of narcotics that were secured at the border? They were all al legal points of entry.

I'm saying this because I am a proud daughter of immigrants who crossed the border. The media has portrayed immigrants as these horrible people infiltrating our country. They just want somewhere safe to live to raise their kid.

The conditions of Latin American countries are inexplicable. Communist have risen from the ashes dominating these countries letting people rot on the street starving. There are little to no job opportunities. I haven't seen my family in three years because it is dangerous to go.

The media doesn't tell you this. They don't tell you how many people have gone to the border and returned to Mexico because ICE agents tear gas them.

They tell you that they throw babies over fences to distract border patrol agents. They tell you children are dying because of malnutrition of trekking thousands of miles to get the border. They don't tell you that those same children have been eating unmonitored food with thousands of microorganism some mal some good.

Not all immigrants are not bad people. The notions that all immigrants are criminals is "fake news." It has been a hook, line, and sinker for the Republican Party. There are studies such as one from the journal Criminology showing that places with high undocumented immigrant population does not equal high crime.

Should undocumented citizens attempt to become legal residents of the United States? Absolutely, and that is a problem if they are evading taxes and other legal notions with more consequences.

However, we should not lie to ourselves and act as a wall is to help border security against drugs and crime. It's just a physical quota like 1920s immigration laws. There is a better solution then sacrificing 5.7 billion dollars. Let me translate that: 5,700,000,000 dollars. That is our taxes. As a college student, I rather have those 5.7 billion dollars be translated to scholarship, grants, financial aid, and helping us, the future of this country become the best people we can be. Why build a wall when the future of America, who I personally think is more important can be helped.

I don't come from a rich family, and I don't have the means to afford a college education without loans, so when I hear that the Government can afford to give 5.7 billion dollars for a wall, I have the right to be upset. Tell me I'm wrong, and call me dumb, but this is my unpopular opinion.


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