What '13 Reasons Why' Taught Me

What '13 Reasons Why' Taught Me

If you're listening, it's too late.
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This past weekend, I gave up all responsibilities and started another Netflix adventure. This time a show that I've heard a lot about, and one that I've been anticipating for a while now, "13 Reasons Why".

Originally depicted in a novel by Jay Asher, "13 Reasons Why" walks through the life and death of the young Hannah Baker (Katherine Langford), who recorded 13 tapes and 13 reasons why she committed suicide. These involve many controversial topics, like bullying, young love, sexual assault, stalking and much more. The main protagonist of this story is Clay Jensen (Dylan Minnette) who struggles with grief and receives the tapes from Hannah's trusted individual.

I originally became interested in this story when I heard about the book from a few of my friends. They all raved about the book, saying how great yet sad the story is, and honestly, I didn't know what I was getting myself into.

I know that when I started watching the Netflix original series, I didn't cry like I expected myself to. Instead, after watching each episode I felt a little bit more hesitant of the world around me.

Being a former victim of bullying and seeing what others have faced, I empathized with Hannah. I felt her pain and I recognized myself in her more than once throughout the entire series. In addition to the empathy and sympathy I felt for each character going through a bad situation, I started to recognize how much our actions really impact others.

I learned that we all have choices, and those choices shape our own life, as well as others, even if we don't know it. Whatever we do, whether it be bad or good, has the power to impact another person. We can say something, we can assume things, and we can even make mistakes that actually hurts someone, but maybe the best choice is to just care about another person.

We don't know what is going on in other people's lives unless we actually ask, so it's better to be kind and caring than to risk hurting another person.

In the series, she says "some of you cared, but some of you didn't care enough." And no matter how cynical or hateful a person can be, if they can care about another human being, they have the power to save a life.

In addition to this, I learned that although this show was a dramatic portrayal of highschool, a lot of the negative mentality and sexist language still radiates through today's society. I know in my highschool, many girls were harassed, and I look around the world and see it's still very much present in college, and in everyday life.

After watching the entire season in a weekend, my emotions are definitely at an all time high, but I really appreciate what this show and novel did.

This series highlights almost all of the topics people are afraid to discuss, like suicide and bullying. But hopefully this show can teach others the truth about victims and how they get to the point of no return, so that maybe, one day, we can actually save them.


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To the guy that shot my brother...

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To the guy that shot my brother,

On January 9, 2019 my families entire life changed with one phone call. The phone call that my little brother had been shot in the face, no other details. We didn't need any other details. The woman on the phone who called us in full panic told us where he was so we went, as soon as possible. I don't think it helped that not even 10 min prior I talked to Zach on the phone.. kind of irritated with him, and the ONE TIME I didn't say 'I love you' as we hung up. Could've been the last time we ever spoke.. I remember pulling up to the hospital thinking 'this can't be real' 'it's not our Zach' 'this is just a dream Sarah, WAKE UP' I'd close my eyes really tight just to open them, I was still in the hospital emergency parking lot. I could still hear the ambulance sirens coming. It was all real.

The day our life's changed was definitely a test of faith. A test of how strong we were, as a family. I sat in that waiting room ready to see the damage that has been done to my sweet baby brother. Because at that point we had no idea how lucky he got. That glimpse of seeing Zach will haunt me forever. How helpless I felt in that exact moment frequently wakes me up from these horrific dreams I've been having ever since that day. That is a moment burned into my me and families brain forever.

You always hear about these things in the movies or on the news, a house being shot up, someone shooting another innocent person, not to care if they died on your watch. But we found ourselves on the news.. We have been confined to the hospital since that day. Running on barely any sleep, taking shifts of sleep so we don't make ourselves sick taking care of Zach. Watching him suffer. Undergoing surgeries, to repair the damage you did.

Before I proceed let me tell you a little something about the man you shot.

Zachary Keith Wright. A blonde hair blue eyed boy. Who could potentially be the most annoying human on the planet (possibly coming from his sister). A man who loves his God first, loves his family second. Perfect by no means, but almost perfect to me. A 19 year old who was to graduate high school this month. After graduation he was prepping to leave for Marine boot camp in the summer.. being in the military has been Zach's dream since he could talk. Literally. Running around, playing war with underwear on our heads, and finger guns. Some would say we looked like natural born assassins.. growing up he has been a country boy. Let me tell ya country to the core. He loves this country like he loves his family. He believes in helping people, taking charge in what's right, and never leaving a brother behind. He's lived by that his whole life. Until now....

The day you shot him. The day not only did you change my brothers life, you changed his families life too. The day you almost ripped my brother out of this world... for what? A misunderstanding? Because you've let something take ahold of your life that you can't let go you're willing to kill someone innocent over? Luckily for him, his guardian angels were protecting him in your time of cowardice. There were 3 times that day he should've died, the time you shot him, the time you tried to shoot him again as he stared you directly in the face, (even tho he couldn't talk I know you could read his eyes, and he still intimidated you. That's why you tried to pull the trigger again) and the time he was running out of the house. But he lived. A man who was shot in the face, didn't lay there helpless, didn't scream in agony. That MAN walked to the neighbors to get help. Why? Because he's a MAN, and because he's on this earth for a reason.

It's gonna sound a little strange not only to you, but the audience who is reading this. I must say thank you. Even in this situation, this was the best outcome we could get. He gets to live. He will make a full recovery. He will graduate. And he will go off into the Marines. You united my family together. Closer than ever. Thank you. You tested our faith and brought us closer to our God. Thank you. Because of your moment of weakness, you showed us what prayer could do. Heal anything. Thank you. This was a bump in the road, and a helluva way to kick off our year of 2019. But here we are.. all laying in the hospital. I'm looking around as mom is sleeping in her recliner chair exhasted but still here, Zach his awake playing his xbox all hooked up to machines, fighting to heal and get better. And of course I'm writing this letter to you.

See you in trial,

From the girl whose brother you shot.

'Fight the good fight' - 1 Tim 6:12 🤟🏼💙

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23 Things That ~Barely~ Run Through A Girl's Mind During Her First Workout In, Like, Forever

Why did I do this to myself?

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It's the beginning of the semester and that means half of the students on campus have decided that we are going to go back to the gym after their workout routine fell through last semester. It's been months since we've stepped foot in the gym, but we are ready to attack it and get fit. That is until we get there and start going.

1. How did I get to the gym? Didn't I walk here? That should count as exercise

2. Why am I here?

3. Are these clothes tighter than they were last time?

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7. Okay, I am going to set this at the easiest level

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9. Is 3 minutes long enough? No, darn it.

10. How many calories have I burned? Only 10 are you kidding me!

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18. Last minute I'm going to go so hard right now

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20. Hallelujah, praise Jesus, I am done!

21. I am so tired

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23. I can't believe I have to walk home now. I've already done my exercising for the day

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