[Book Revew] True Believer by Nicholas Sparks

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True Believer

Nicholas Sparks

Jeremy Marsh is the ultimate New Yorker: handsome, almost always dressed in black, and part of the media elite. An expert on debunking the supernatural with a regular column in “Scientific American,” he’s just made his first appearance on national TV. When he receives a letter from the tiny town of Boone Creek, North Carolina, about ghostly lights that appear in a legend-shrouded cemetery, he can’t resist driving down to investigate. Here, in this tightly knit community, Lexie Darnell runs the town’s library, just as her mother did before the accident that left Lexie an orphan. Disappointed by past relationships, including one that lured her away from home, she is sure of one thing: her future is in Boone Creek, close to her grandmother and all the other people she loves. Jeremy expects to spend a quick week in “the sticks” before speeding back to the city. But from the moment he sets eyes on Lexie, he is intrigued and attracted to this beautiful woman who speaks with a soft drawl and confounding honesty. And Lexie, while hesitating to trust this outsider, finds herself thinking of Jeremy more than she cares to admit. Now, if they are to be together, Jeremy Marsh must make a difficult choice: return to the life he knows, or do something he’s never done before–take a giant leap of faith. A story about taking chances and following your heart, True Believer will make you, too, believe in the miracle of love.

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My Rating: 3.7/5

Nicholas Sparks is considerably one of the most famous romance authors in the world with his famous works The Notebook, Dear John, A Walk To Remember, and The Last Song to name a few. Out of his seventeen novels, eight have been adapted into feature films.

True Believer follows the love story of Jeremy Marsh and Lexie Darnell, wherein they are both met with a miracle that surprises them both. A story that will make these two characters learn how to trust, whether it is themselves, others, or something else.

The story, for me, started out pretty slow for it concentrated on the character development of Jeremy Marsh. Though it was needed, some of those who I knew read the book got bored and stopped reading.

It took me a long time to finish this book because I was looking for something magical, for something that would make me go all “DAAAAANG.” I was trying to understand also what made Nicholas Sparks so famous in his genre. I did not realize it until I got to the end of the book.

What makes True Believer so special, is that it’s very relatable. It’s a story about real people, about you and me. It does not have someone so special (even if the summary seems as if Jeremy Marsh is all that, he’s very introverted and whatnot). What it has is you and me, and the real life challenges that we all face. There’s Jeremy who secretly handles a lot of insecurities, and there’s Lexie who’s afraid to fall in love. And there’s this push and pull thing to their relationship that’s like a challenge that couples have to go through. Even if their issues come out early in their relationship, it’s there and it’s real and it happens. And, let me put a little story of mine here. When I first started reading this, I was single. Then I was dating someone, and it hit me that one’s issues about relationships could really come out just a day after finding someone you’re really attracted to.

Though there are times when this book would seem to be so slow that I would discard it somewhere in my room to be untouched for days, I was smiling when I finished reading. So if you’re someone who’s interested in reading this and you’re looking for fast magic, I wouldn’t recommend this. However, if you’re looking for a dear friend who’ll take you through things slowly, then I would recommend this.

True Believer, a story that will make you believe in miracles, not that of the supernatural but that of ourselves, and that there is hope no matter how thick and high our walls are.

 

[Book Review] Hollow City by Ranson Riggs

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Hollow City

Ransom Riggs

The extraordinary journey that began in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children continues as Jacob Portman and his newfound friends journey to London the peculiar capital of the world. But in this war-torn city, hideous surprises lurk around every corner. Like its predecessor, this second novel in the Peculiar Children series blends thrilling fantasy with never-before-published vintage photography to create a one-of-a-kind reacting experience.

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My Rating: 3.9/5

Ransom Riggs has captivated the hearts of his peculiar fans with just his debut novel. Since the release of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, its readers have been anticipating the release of Hollow City, the second book, and now those who finished Hollow City are patiently (or not so patiently) waiting for the next book to come out.

Hollow City, for me, had a lot more adventure to it. The first book had more mystery, though. Anyways, Hollow City was a very interesting read. There was a vast use of imagination. Though some would say that the book was messy because the plot revolves around random pictures, I believe that those random pictures made the book unpredictable when it comes to its characters. I have to admit, however, that there were parts that were predictable but I don’t think that the normal reader would notice that. If you let yourself loose into Hollow City, you’ll experience more of its peculiar mysticism. 

The book started off where the first book ended (obviously), and it felt as if you were climbing a mountain. The first part was rather slow (but I believe it is needed to build up a story), but once the challenges were brought to the children, the pace just slaps you in the face. There are remarkable characters and tragic events that take place in the book, giving this so-called children’s book a more mature vibe.

*Just a side comment… I don’t really see why this book was considered to be for kids. There was cursing in the first book, the tragic events (like the murder of Jacob’s grandfather), and the romance between Jacob and Emma (think of it this way… you’re dating your grandfather’s ex-girlfriend)

Hollow City, a tale where children are forced to grow up, fills its readers with spellbinding characters that each have tragic stories. Despite the horrors, though, that happen in the book, Riggs maintains this light feel throughout the book that you can still smile when you put the book down. So don’t be swayed by its seemingly dark cover and peculiar summary.

Missed prince

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We all have that lost love. The one who we know as “the one that got away.” Someone who made our heart race and made our world stop moving. Someone who could make us smile by standing beside us and someone who could make us shed a tear when he leaves. If we’re lucky enough, we marry them. If not, then they slipped away from us.

This is for that special someone who I once loved dearly.

We met thru a friend while I was at a foreign country because of my education. He was more than everything I could ever wish for. At that time, I was a romantic with big dreams. Now, I’m neither. Anyways, while there, I was chasing after a dream when I met him. He was your typical good looking foreigner with that beautiful voice and accent. He lived there, of course, so I guess I was the foreigner.

We lived in different cities that were an hour apart. I was studying in a college and he was too. Our interests, however, were so different. While he loved the typical masculine stuff such as sports and drinking, I was very artistic, spending my time on the arts and whatnot. However, I felt as if we matched.

My schedule that time was very hectic wherein I literally only got 2 hours of rest at night for I would up and going from 9am to who knows when. And my schedule would be seven days a week, barely getting a break from everything that I was doing. Despite all of that, he tried to adjust himself to my time. We would meet late at night even if his classes would start at 7am, and he would travel to my city as often as he could. Most of the time, we just talked through the phone or through skype. Whenever I had to stuff with work, wherein my work that time was very emotionally draining, he would be there but albeit only on the phone. I did not want him to come to me even if he offered to accompany me. Also, our schedules just would not meet. Whenever I texted him, tho, telling him that I was scared or nervous, he would try to escape his duties even if it was for five minutes just to give me the support that I needed.

He was everything to me back then. Since I was alone in that country, he was literally everything to me. After practice, after school, after work, it was him. In the weekends, after meeting with my managers and agents and producers, it was him. But I never adjusted to his time. It was always him. He adjusted. He went to me. He respected my dreams and he was my number one supporter. When I  cried on the phone because I opened up to him, he was ready to go to my place with a box of tissues. At night, he would text me to wish me some sweet dreams. In the morning, I would wake to his simple message of “good morning :)” and even if it was just that, it made me feel loved. Whenever I was on a diet, he would diet with me. When I got lost in the big city and sent him a message telling him that, he got worried. Then my phone’s battery died. When I got home, I received numerous messages of him panicking. He said that if I don’t reply by the next day, he’ll call the police. One time I told him that I tricked a friend into believing that I had a child. He believed it and said that “it was okay.” Since I was always busy, we treasured our times together. He was always excited for me to meet his friends and family, although I never met his family I met his friends just once. And he knew that I was tired. Even if it was through skype, he helped me with my schedule and found the days wherein we could be together because a relationship could not grow just through a phone or a laptop.

Also, we could not be in a relationship if it was only him who was giving. I was being selfish. I was too focused on my career and nothing more. He adjusted to my schedule, I put my ambitions on top of him. Even if he was all that I had during that time, I was ready to leave if my boss told me to. And I could not live another day seeing how selfless he was.

I was a lucky girl to have him. He was more than a prince and more than a king to me. He was…. everything. The man who danced in my dreams. The man who I idealized. He understood me and stuck by my side despite my ambitiousness.

I was more than selfish. I was just acting like a bitch even if I loved him. I wanted him to live his life without me because I knew that I could never give him the love that he gave me. So, one day, I let him go. And when I did, I could not tell him my reason for I felt ashamed and little. I told him that I just had to. He cried. I cried. He tried to fix it but I did not allow for it to happen.

He is that one that got away. I admit that I may be sad because of our separation, but if you love someone, then you must set them free. Especially if you know that you’re just hurting them.

Sometimes I do wonder what it would be if we never separated. I still want him to be in my life, but he’s happy now.

Psychic Trip

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Dudes, this is one of the most wonderful and just…. shocking things that happened to me so far.

Anyways, I love reading and writing. You guys know that. However, aside from that, I have a business. So, earlier, I went to my partner’s house where I met her mother who turned out to be a psychic/fortune teller. Now, some of you might say that that’s rubbish. Well, feel free to leave but if you would want to read on, you are more than welcomed to stay :)

When I first entered the house, I noticed immediately that there were a lot of things. Like, a LOT. There was this corner where there were religious figures, and there were slippers on the wall, and there were more stuff. I didn’t think of anything at first. I was just sitting there looking at all the interesting stuff. My partner, let’s call her Patricia, came out and greeted me and my other partner, let’s give her the name Paige (I go by a pen name so I’d rather keep pen names for the people I’ll mention as well :) )

I was seated on this bench like thing near this corner that was surrounded by religious statues. Near it was a table where there was the picture of Patricia’s late father. It was like a small altar. The three of us were talking when Patricia’s mom, let’s call Jane, came out. She was ringing this bell. At first, I thought of nothing but then Paige mentioned something about Feng Shui that I just looked and was like, “What ya talking about, woman?” Of course, I didn’t say that but I know I made that face. Anyways, they talked about the bell and then something about a crystal ball, then before I know it, Jane showed us a crystal ball on the altar dedicated to her husband. I was like, “seriously??” And since I was getting distracted, I didn’t hear what the people around me were talking about until I heard “fortune telling.”

So, let’s skip all the parts after because it’s about business. Anyways, you see, from business, Paige joked saying, “What do you see in me?” Jane said something along the lines of love life. I won’t be able to talk more about Paige since I was not able to completely listen to all of what they talked about because I was doing other business. However, I can assure you that what I heard were secrets that Paige entrusted to me just the day before and she pinpointed Paige’s personality.

Since I can’t really tell about what happened with Paige, I can tell you what happened with me.

At first, when Jane told us that she’s a psychic who got training in three different countries, I was scared because I had too many secrets. I did not want her to reveal it especially to Paige because I did not want any discord between the two of us. But after she talked to Paige about what she saw in my friend, I became so curious to the point that I became a kid who raised her hand and shouted, “Can you tell me what you see in me too, please?” She was more than happy to do it.

The first thing she said convinced me that she was the real thing. Why?

I was sitting in front of her desk with Paige beside me. Jane leaned back and scrunched her nose. She shook her finger in front of me then said, “An accident.” It was my turn to scrunch my face because I could not think of any accident that happened to me before. So I asked and she said, “I see water.”

In my head, I screamed, “BLOODY FUCKING SHIT!” of course, I couldn’t curse in front of her. My hands just launched itself to my mouth and I was speechless. I gasped, “No one knows about that!” It wasn’t like I kept it a secret. It was just something that I found so trivial. Well, okay, it wasn’t a trivial because I almost died -like, no joke, I felt as if the light was in front of me already when that happened. It’s just, you know, something that usually never comes to me when I talk.

I almost drowned when I was around 8-10. My cousin and I were playing a game and  she left me be as I followed this “thing” underwater. It’s a stupid thing so let’s not say what that “thing” is. Anyways, I lost track of where I was and so did my cousin. Before I knew it, I was already drowning and the people around me ignored me. Let me rephrase that: BIG ADULTS IGNORED A DROWNING CHILD. Like, come on! My aunt saw me from the other side of the place and she RAN like VROOM ran to save me.

I turned to Paige and she was like, “Is that real?” Like, duh, girl! Anyways, it was real and I was HOOKED. I sat beside Jane and asked her more of what she saw. Here’s what she said:

I was motivated but there’s this “thing” that keeps me from getting to my goals and that everything all goes to waste. Of course, I could not understand her. She said that I had this like “wall” thing that kept me from getting what I want and that my luck turns into bad luck. Then she said that there was this vase-thing or ceramic-something that broke during an occasion at my house and that I needed to break it and keep a piece of it with me. Apparently, the breakage destroyed the luck in the house and that I need to fight it or I need to keep it in my wallet.

You might say that that’s crap, but then she mentioned that I had a favorite pillow which was long and shaped oddly. I won’t venture into that but… she’s right.

And she saw right through me. Most people assume for me to be this social and outgoing person who’s always out and stuff. However, she said that I was not like that. She said that my “style” was going solo, and that I was a loner. I am sincere with my friends but I HATE going out. It’s like I want to go out, but I don’t feel it. Two different sides of me fighting. So sometimes I make things up to escape going out especially when I feel forced to go out, forced but I want to go out (confusing right?) and she said more stuff that I won’t say anymore because I might bore you guys.

Anyways, after like an hour of being with her, I was more than convinced. She was able to see 3 very crucial people to me. One of whom I feel the safest with, but she said that that someone was like hanging by a thread or that it was hard to be with her, something like that, but she was the one who would protect me if ever. Yes, she specified a woman. Then, she said that there was this man who was trying to control me or who I felt was unbelievably controlling, the person who was the root of my stress and depression. Then she said that there was another man who would openly give me a helping hand, but there was this “but” that I don’t remember. She even said who those people were specifically and I was slapped… I swear. I was not only slapped I was also beaten up and more. Like, woah, girl!

. I’m going to end it over here because I don’t see anything more exciting aside from her unraveling my personality (she also said that I had too many personalities and that I adapt to every person I might wherein I feel guilty because I don’t show them the real me).

Oh! One more! When we were sitting right in front of one another, she was like, “oh, dear…” she took a mirror and made me look at it. Then she said, “Your third eye is open.”

Now, you might not believe in those things, but when she said that…. let’s just say that I fell on my knees and started admiring her from head to foot because I was literally unraveled in front of my two friends.

That was my experience with that psychic. My challenge now, from her, is to become more positive. She said she’ll help me along the way. My negativity, apparently, is what attracts the bad luck and that my “third eye” or so is attracting more bad luck. Did that confuse you? Let me explain again. I expect bad things to happen, so I attract the negativity and it does happen because my “eye” or something is like calling for it.

Like what I said, some of you might think that this is bullshit but if your deepest fears were announced and that your unknown traumatic experience was revealed, you’d believe too right?

Dear Daddies

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Before I continue with writing this, let me give you a brief background of myself:

I am practically a mix breed, meaning that I don’t purely fall into one race. Anyways, my family background composes of both the richest people you could imagine and the poorest. I was born and raised in a 3rd world country and  a lot of my family members could not get along. Those who were privileged and blessed, wanted to stay within the country while those who were not wanted to leave. My father and mother, apparently, left so that we could have a good future somewhere else. I grew up with my grandparents. So, if you do not see how complicated that is, let me tell you how it felt in the simplest form possible: I love my grandparents like my parents and I try to love my parents but find it so hard to do so, and since I cling to my grandparents arguments happen.

And, to end this small background…. my mother is a gold digging psychopath and my father has a personality disorder, is violent, used to do drugs, and an alcoholic.

I also don’t find anything wrong with me publicizing this story/letter because this name of mine, Oceane Lacroix, is just a pen name (but I’m part french, tho, in my father’s mother’s mother’s side…. so distant right?)

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Dear daddy,

You used to beat me as a child. I barely saw you but whenever I did, the memories would be dark and I would always end up hiding. Sometimes, I’d listen to you and your friends drink outside the house and hear you guys argue. I’d hear you bash all my uncles. How do you expect me to treat them with respect when I hear you call them fucking assholes who don’t respect people? How do you think little three year old me felt? I just wanted to love everyone and I did. I clung to people when I was young. Now that I’m older, I realized that I clung to them because I was scared that if they weren’t there, that you’d beat me. Wonder why? You only beat me when grandfather wasn’t looking. Don’t say that I’m making these things up because I remember you balling your hands into a tight fist and punching it through my little stomach. I still remember the cause. It was because I leaned on the sink and it fell. I was only three. What would I know about sinks? And I don’t think a three year old will be that heavy to break a sink, don’t you think so?

Still, no one believed me. Why? Because they said that they never see me bruised. Well, from my memories, I remember being punched in the stomach and never the face. But they’re right. Why did I never bruise? I don’t know. Maybe I made those memories up? Maybe, because my mother is a psychopath and my father has a personality disorder, maybe I’m crazy as well?

Then I was five. My younger sister was already born and I wasn’t alone anymore. We were always together, the two of us. And my memories of you, daddy, during that time, were rather jolly. Maybe you stopped punching me, or maybe I wasn’t making any stories up anymore. Anyways, I remember that you always made me and my sister laugh. You would come out of the bathroom with your towel around your waist and belt out Lady Marmalade with your awful voice. And you’d always ask me what I wanted whenever you would come over for vacation. My sister and I always asked for the little stuff but you’d always come home with extravagant gifts. I could honestly say, hey, I love my dad. 

One day, though, dad killed our cat. I heard the gunshot. boom. And the cat and her kitten was gone. I don’t remember if I cried or if I felt sad for losing that cat, but I remember hugging my little sister and being scared.

That memory buried itself in my little head. After all, I barely saw my father.He was never there. He was only there two weeks per year and he’d call once every month. He barely talked to me, though. He mostly talked to his mother but who could blame him? He was a momma’s boy and he missed his mom. And besides I had my grandfather, right?

I already entered elementary school. I was in this very privileged private school and I remember that there was this girl. We were in first grade and that girl was somewhat special. I was a shy first grader, barely talked and kept to myself. I watched people all the time, though, and that special girl was always teased. Ugly. Monster. Witch. All those horrible sayings that you could say to a little girl to make her cry. The other girls would push her, too, and I’d just watch and stare and do nothing. I did not know how to defend her. I did not even know her.

Then daddy called. He told me, Sometimes, you have to keep the truth a secret. It’s bad to be honest all the time, baby girl. I remember that I smiled and jumped in joy. I said, I know that, daddy! There’s this girl in my school. She’s special but I don’t call her special. He paused then said, That’s my girl.

At that time, I thought that I really was being a good girl. However, I did not defend that special girl. Also, why would it be to be honest? I grew up with Disney movies where truth always prevailed. There’s a difference between being respectful, sensitive, and not being honest.

Years passed and, finally, I was in high school. A great time, right? You have friends and you enjoy going out with them. How was my high school life? Horrible. I suffered from intense trust issues and I was pissed off at myself. Why? Because when I see confident people, I look up to them. I want to be like them because I feel as if I was a confident person. However, why couldn’t I be confident? Why did I hate myself so much? Why was I suspicious of people? I could not understand.

During my first year in high school, my dad took me out and brought me to the gardens. He put his arm around me and showed me the things that he had renovated in the house. I listen to him and feel comfortable. Then, he told me, that I should always be on top. I should never fall second to anyone especially this certain side of my family who I grew up with. I wanted to ask why, but I did not need to know the answers that I already know. He always trash talked that part of our family, always told me that they were evil, but I had more memories with them than him. And if he hated his cousins on that side of the family, why must he teach me how to hate them to? His cousins always treated me kindly. They brought me to the beach, would give me gifts, and they’d listen to me whenever I felt bad. But, since he was my father, I felt bad. I did not know if I should follow him or not. However, arguments happened between me and my father’s cousins. But family members fight. It was supposed to be normal. It was not normal for me, though, for I started to listen to my dad. I started to hate my family and I would get angry at easily whenever I would see them. And every time my siblings would go play with our cousins who were my father’s cousins’ children, I would go crazy,

And more shit happened. I saw my grandfather and father almost engage in a fist fight. I did not know if that was funny or not but I remember that I could not cast my eyes away. I was just watching. And to be honest, I was only eavesdropping. They did not know that I was there. It was just… ironic because the ones who came to both my father and my grandfather’s rescue were my father’s cousins who sat down with my father to calm him down because they cared for my father.

I was so confused.

Then my grandfather died. The position of man of the house was passed down to my uncle. No matter how much I love my uncle, though, who is my father’s brother, I could not look at him as a father. I did not grow up with him. Well, actually I did. I just don’t have much memories with him, though. My childhood memories with him was that he was a quiet man who was always at work. I would wait for him come home from work and surprise him. He’d also bring us to the movies, the doctor, and he attended my school events. He did all of those because he cared for me and my siblings. But it was so hard to change that father who was in my heart, and that was my grandfather. I’m still trying to think of my uncle as my grandfather but even now that I am twenty-two it is still so fucking hard. Especially if they keep saying that my father’s my father and that all the decisions land on my father. Why was it never grandfather who raised me? Why was it not uncle who was my second father? Why were the decisions coming from the man who planted his sperm in the bitch, who gave birth to me, in a one night stand? Why? I only want one father and it is just painful and I’m crying at this very moment thinking of how confusing and frustrating it is having three fathers with three different attitudes and three different beliefs. Who was I supposed to follow? Who was supposed to be my role model? It was my grandfather, but since everyone kept pointing me in the direction of my father, and since the loss of my grandfather somehow pointed me to my uncle, I became a mess.

Then college. Oh the last stage of education that could last decades. Anyways, I finally moved out of the country and lived with my mentally deranged parents. There, I became depressed. I even asked myself, why can’t I be happy when they’re trying to hard to make me smile? Yes, I admit that I was at the wrong. Both my mother and father always bought me gifts, always asked me to hang with them, always tried to talk to me, but nothing. I would come home from school with a frown on his face. I would start to see black whenever I’d hear their voices. And to know that they were in the vicinity would throw me in a spiral of numerous, unnerving emotions that I did not want to be in front of. My mother was at fault there, honestly, but I also blamed my father because he sided with my mother. He would always tell me, Understand your mother. When was he going to understand me? He was my mother’s puppet and he could not see how much of a psychopath my mother was.

Anyways, my father tried his hardest to mend things between my mother and me. At that time, I thought that he was a changed man because he was not as violent as before and he was, honestly, much much nicer. I was also happy that my siblings did not go through the emotional and physical abuse that I have been through. However, changed people still have their quirks for there were times when my father would just snap.

I, honestly, am a very messy person. So my father and I would always clash with my messy belongings. One day, I went home to see that all my belongings were thrown all over the house and a lot of things were broken. He said that it was my fault for being messy and that I should have been aware of my anger. So I took all the blame. I did not fight back.

I also worked part time as a tutor who went to my students’ homes. Since my father was being cautious and stuff, he would drive me. Don’t get me wrong, ok? I’m a very talkative person but when I don’t feel good, I get so damn quiet. Most everyone’s like that. Anyways, I would be quiet during our car rides. I would just listen. Ten minutes into the ride, he’s screaming at me, saying that I’m very disrespectful, self centered, etc. etc. etc. And, please take note that he would get angry at me because he would speak of his stories. I would not tell him my stories, you see, as I would just listen with those responsive “ah’s” and “oh’s.”

So, I realized that that was that: I would realize that I need to be nicer to my parents and accept them, and when I’m in the process of doing so, something will happen. I would take three steps forward but ten steps back.

Then the shittiest shit happened to our family. I would not speak of it but let’s just sum it up to this:

Divorce. I was being hardheaded and did what I could not while not listening to my very reserved family. My father and I patched up our relationship, but then I found out his secret (drugs) and everything went downhill because a friend of mine started to play with my head, saying that my father would end up harming someone and I was worried for the children in the house. Couple that up with some misunderstandings and gossip whores, and it seemed as if I was planning to throw my dad to rehab when I said that I would only do that if he hurts someone Because, apparently, my memories of him beating me up were still strong.

I left the country and stopped with my education. Back in my home country,my father accused me of being mentally ill so that he could cover up the secrets that I knew. Fucking shit, right? He would throw his own child just to keep his secrets hidden. I have never felt so alone and so misunderstood. However, nothing would push me down. When I want to stand up for something, nothing and no one but the God up there can stop me. And I want to trust him because I had this small touch of grace when I went to church after all the shit.

So, yes. I asked to go get my head checked because everyone around my dad agreed that I was mentally ill. After a year of seeing a therapist, I have been cleared to be considered in the normal spectrum but I do have a significant amount of stress. What keeps me from being considered as mentally ill? I could understand people and I could feel emotions. I have insight. However, I am just unbelievably stubborn for I fall under the personality ranges of people like Martin Luther King Jr. If you know him, you know that he did not give up on his cause no matter what. That’s me. When I say something, I’ll stick to it until the end. Also, when I’m angry, I would push the person I despise away and become self centered towards that person who I loathe. So, there.

There’s more that I learned from therapy, in which my personality leans towards three personality disorders: narcissistic, borderline, and histrionic (every person leans towards a certain personality). And, apparently, my therapist said that my father most probably has narcissistic personality disorder.

Anyways, going on with the story. I lived away from my father in my childhood home. Then, father was about to go home for good. In an attempt to keep the peace, I wrote him a letter. He accepted it. However, when he came back home, even if things were finally ok between us, I found out that it wasn’t. He randomly got angry one day and blamed his divorce on me.

Look, you fucking daddy, just because I was your first does not mean that I’m at fault. It’s not my fault that you fucked the bitch without thinking. (of course, I didn’t tell him that.)

So, yeah, my uncle heard and he intervened. I heard what my dad tell him. To make it easy to understand, let’s say that my dad and I fought over subject A. Dad told uncle that we fought over subjects B, C, and D. Uncle sided with dad. It pissed me off. Starting then, I went back to my depressive state whenever I saw the ugly bastard’s face. He deserved it. He will never receive the love of his first born no matter how much he tries because, deep inside, he does not want to see his faults. Instead, he puts his faults on others.

Then, one day, my father beat me up. Being a respectful daughter who grew up in this bloody third world country where the culture is your parents have the right to hurt you, I could not fight back. I wished that I was back in the US so that I could call 911 but the harsh reality was that this culture empowers parents to belittle their children. Anyways, some of my neighbors who are my relatives heard the commotion and came over. Guess what happened. They sided with my dad. And the same thing happened. The topic of the argument was subject A but my dad said B, C, D, and E.

How frustrating. I don’t even want to speak of what we fought about because the fact is, you are not supposed to beat up your DAUGHTER. People even tried to give me ice to put on my face. I refused. I said, I want it to bruise so that I have proof. Guess what. I did not bruise. I remember telling my uncle see. This proves that I did not lie about how dad used to punch me. I don’t bruise and I don’t know why! I got punched really fucking hard numerous times but nothing. As in NOTHING. And my uncle even doubted my account, saying that maybe dad slapped me and I just exaggerated the whole punching thing. Guess what, motherfuckers, I did not. My dear uncle did not even believe me until my sister confessed to seeing the crime.

Since then, my father and I cannot wait for the day that I leave this place for good.

So, going back to the bruising, I mentioned that maybe my childhood memories of being beaten up might have been my imagination. However, when I realized that I don’t bruise, I realized that I did not make those memories up and that I truly am not mentally ill. It is just that my father manipulates all our relatives by using the pity card, making him look like a special dude who lacked love when he was a child. To be unbiased, I would say that that is true. My dad’s life is a very, very sad life filled with feelings of being unloved and alone and being misunderstood. I had three father figures and he had two. We are kinda like the same, that’s why the personality that I lean to narcissistic and he, apparently, is narcissistic and my therapist thinks that he seriously has that disorder.

Anyways, I try not to be unbiased but let me get this out: I would not fall and I would go through a thousand gunshots without flinching and fighting back. However, when it is time to stop, it’s time to STOP.

I fixed all the relationships that were destroyed due to the lessons that my father taught me. However, I don’t want to fix the relationships with my father. Maybe deep down, I do. But that part is somewhere deep in the dark recesses of my soul. Because I would tell you that I will never forgive him until he realizes that he’s wrong because I am tired of being on the receiving end of his anger and on the receiving end of everyone’s frustrations. Most of all, I hate being painted as the liar. I am tired of saying the truth only to have it be twisted. I guess my father was right. It is not right to be honest. Well, here’s my belief: We would live in darkness if people did not fight for other people, if people hid behind masks and walls, and if people are cowards.

I would never stop fighting for what I believe in. I know that my image with my family might never be fixed and that hurts. I know that the people around me will never open their eyes to my violent father (my brother admitted that dad also used to punch him). I know that I will never get the justice that I deserve from all the years that I have suffered under my dad’s violent ways and his unhealthy mindset. You see, I do not ask for anything but for the acknowledgement that I am a hurt individual. I want to hear the people around me to say, I’m sorry. You were right all along. That’s all that I want to hear. I stopped dreaming of a time machine. I just want the acknowledgement that I never lied. They could even tell me something like, Leave already. Yes, you were right, but we cannot handle your stubborn personality that refuses to accept what’s around her. I would welcome that,. I would even have my family kill me if it means that they finally acknowledge my words and see how dangerous my father is.

To end this, I want to tell you something that my grandfather used to tell me which I could not understand while I was young. It’s this: While I am still alive, I will take care of you.

Those are the words of a true father. Because with my uncle, it’s hard to say but I feel as if he turns a blind eye to how hurt people around him are. He insists on seeing the sunshine. Sometimes, though, a storm comes and people need shelter. I do not look for partners in my hatred or fights, I just want a hug. And with my father, for him, he’ll only take care of you when he feels like it because if he does not then you’re dead.

So,

Dear daddies…

Why? A family is a culture and I am confused with this culture because there are so many of you. Who am I supposed to be like? Who am I supposed to follow? It’s so confusing it hurts.

Dear grandfather,

I wish you were here. Can I bring you back from the dead? I’m sorry for the teenage angst. I was at a loss and I found it hard to open to you but all those times that I did, I felt as if you loved me. You waited for me to get over my teenage angst and were so patient with me. I was just so late because when you died, I was still that teenager. The last few months of your life, I tried to be nice but it was hard. I did not give you the apology you deserved, I just did not know how to communicate all that pain in me, and that caused me to be harsh towards you, the person who loved me the most. Until now, I wish that I was different so that I could have treated you like a good daughter.

Dear uncle,

Do you see that I’m in a pain? I try to understand you but I see that there is this wall in between us. If before we had a good relationship, I would want to be honest and say that I have felt this wall between us for years already. I just feel as if it’s thicker now Maybe because you took grandfather’s place as the father I looked up to, and maybe because I expected you to be as brave, as talkative, as hyper, as loud, as versatile as him. I don’t know. I was used to the way he loved me that I could not find myself to get used to your ways. I also feel as if you don’t even try to understand me. Please don’t blame me, either, grandfather taught me that it is a parents’ job to parent, it is never the child’s job to parent. The child should be a child. So, yeah, I expect a great deal of understanding from my parent figures but I should have known before hand that I should not be switching the crowns that I have put on people’s heads. After all, it was never your job to be my father, uncle. Why must I pressure you to?

Dear father,

I hate you. You taught me the wrong ways of the world and you laid your strong fist upon me and your youngest child. You lie. Manipulate. Exaggerate, Depend on others, Blame others. And much more. No matter how much you try to buy me back with gifts and favors and whatnot, no matter how much you try to lower your head when it comes to me, my forgiveness is something that you will never receive.

 

Oceane’s Blog: 2014.04.27

There’s something about writing which relaxes me…. and there’s something about writing that frustrates me.

I honestly believe that writing is a way of release. However, for me, personally, it is a way of reflecting what is inside the inner depths of my mind which is one scary thing. When writing, people would see their dark sides. I found out that I’m vengeful, somewhat indecisive, very insecure, and unbelievably stubborn. And, whenever I’m writing and reliving all of those memories in my subconscious, the moodiness is just unfathomable.

Why am I saying that?

Imagine being in a cafe and suddenly you’re crying.

You want a more descriptive scene?

I was at the corner of the cafe with my pink, heart and glitter attacked laptop, in front of me. There’s a brownie by my side and tea as well. I’m typing, then reading, then typing, then reading, then crying and typing, and then crying and reading. I place my hand against my mouth and sob as the tears kept going down my cheeks.

The man beside me glances.

The security guard glances

Hashtag? #embarassing #notetoselfdonotwriteemotionalscenesinpublic

[Book Review] I heart you, You haunt me by Lisa Shroeder

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I heart you, You haunt me

By Lisa Shroeder

 

Girl meets boy.
Girl loses boy. 
Girl gets boy back…

..sort of. 

Ava can’t see him or touch him, 
unless she’s dreaming. 
She can’t hear his voice, 
except for the faint whispers in her mind. 
Most would think she’s crazy, but she knows he’s here.

Jackson. 
The boy Ava thought she’d spend the rest of her life with. 
He’s back from the dead, 
as proof that love truly knows no bounds.

++++

My Rating: 4.0/5

A short story of heartache and moving on, learning that the letting go is not only for the one you love but for yourself as well.

In all honesty, I have never read anything by Lisa Shroeder nor did I ever read anything about her. It’s just that I found the plot interesting and I won’t deny that I was greatly entertained. However, before I move on with saying how much I enjoyed the book, I would have to say that it was written in verses, much like a poem. It caused frustration in some readers and I have to admit that it frustrated me at first too because I kept thinking that it was a poem. But after a while, you’ll get it. It just takes some getting used to.

Anyways, on to the story! The story was honestly very simple, a very real thing that could happen to all of us. And like what all of us dreams of, the story speaks of how love can cross boundaries (in this case, it’s literal). The simplicity of the book, though, did not fail its purpose for the writing held intense emotions in it. So I have to say that it was well written. It did not need to explain in paragraphs how their skins touched and whatnot for the reader to feel the pain.

A well written short tragedy that speaks to the fear and guilt we all have inside of us. A story of letting go in its selfish and selfless sense. Most of all, a story of forgiveness and life.

What are dreams to us?

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The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.

-Eleanor Roosevelt

 

Dreams. What are they? Are they inspirational or maybe childish? What?

When we were all young, we dreamed of becoming something. Some dreamed of becoming astronauts, politicians, pop stars, being rich, or having a family. We all have our own childish dreams. So are our dreams really like that? Some childish fantasy? We have kids who look up to what they see on TV and they dream of becoming movie stars or famous dancers. Some want to be athletes like Michael Phelps or Maria Sharapova. But how many of us achieved our dreams? Actually, scratch that, how many of us tried to achieve our dreams? Do I hear 10? 20? 100? or is it just 1?

I have a friend who wanted to be this awesome pop star but she never acted on it. She’s an awesome performer, though, but when I asked why, she said that it’s because it’s just a fantasy. She’ll never be someone like Jennifer Lopez. I’m going to tell you that there’s a high chance that Jennifer Lopez did not expect herself to be a world wide phenomenon.

Then I have a friend who was ranked as the #3 in her country when it comes to her sport, tennis. But I never saw the passion in her while we were growing up. She was proud of her medals and she always posted about it sites such as Facebook or MySpace, but she was not gleaming with this I’m living my dream aura. Instead, she just shrugs it. I’m aware that maybe she was just being humble but when I ask her what she wants to do with her future, tennis is not in her list. However, she says that being one of the top players in her country was always her dream. But is it really?

Then I have another friend who enjoys dancing. She’s different. She works hard and she’s humble about how awesome she is. She got into one of the top universities in her country majoring in dance and she teaches dance and dances for a living. Whenever I see her, she has that I’m living my dream aura and it’s always such a joy to be around her.

So what are our dreams? We all have one and your dream is different from mine the same way that it is different from someone else’s. So what are they? Are they something we find inspiring and a reason to live, or is it something that we just call foolish and childish? An impossible fantasy or a rocky road?

How many of us have grown up hearing people laugh at our dreams? And how many of us have had people support?

Be honest, did you dream of being a movie star? If so, how did the people around you react? Were at first they were smiling because you were a child and it was just so cute? If yes, how was it when you grew up and took your dream seriously? How many of those smiling people have tried to put you down, saying that you can never be Leonardo DiCaprio or Nicole Kidman?

Dreamstealers. They’re always there and they keep us from even striving to achieve our wants. Some of us have let those dreamstealers totally destroy our dreams. Some of us did not. Some of us tried but those dreamstealers always managed to hurt us unconsciously because their words were always at the back of our heads, haunting us in our dreams.

Did you have dreamstealers?

And for those who tried to get your dreams, did you achieve it or did you fail? To those who achieved it, congratulations. Why? You’re living your dream! The reason why there are dreamstealers is because they’re being practical and they did not have the courage to run after those childhood dreams, instead deciding to reach those adult fantasies. So to those living your dreams, just live. Your life is the life that people admire. It is the life that people watch but usually don’t have the courage to try to get because it’s either so hard or it seems so impossible. Tell that to people like the late Cory Monteith. He worked very small jobs before landing his dream job and living his own dream. Despite his issues, I’m sure that he was happy and he did not regret the hardships that he had to go through.

And now, to those who failed. How long were you trying? A year? A few years? Or just a few months? There is nothing to be ashamed of. You did your best and you did one thing that most people are scared to do, which is to run after what truly makes you happy. I admire you the same way I admire those who succeeded. Because, you see, in this world, working hard isn’t enough. Sometimes, it’s working smart. Sometimes, it’s plain luck. Take example Christina Aguilera. She lost this singing contest to this guy whose name I honestly could not remember. However, who got famous? The guy or Christina? Of course, Xtina. Anyways, you see what I mean? Failing does not mark you as a failure. The fact is that you tried to get your dream. You are braver than most of the people around you so I congratulate you.

However, what does failing mean? Some people would forget the past and would create this dark room at the back of their heads. Some would move on. And at this point of this entry, I would have tot ell you one of the most famous lines of this generation:

Let it go.

Yes, the song is about forgetting the past and being yourself, or being strong and achieving your dreams, etc etc etc. There’s a lot of meanings but what exactly does let it go mean? We tell people that if you love someone, you’ll learn how to let them go. Is it the same when it comes to our dreams? I think it is a yes.

There are numerous reasons why we let go of our dreams. Some people would say that it’s because you’re maturing. However, I would say no to that for it is never a childish thing to have a childish fantasy. I don’t think that Jennifer Lawrence would call her career childish. She’s a mature and awesome woman, after all. Anyways, letting go of our dreams… If you never tried to reach it, I can’t say that you let it go. For me, you have to try to reach it first for how could you let go of something that you were never close to get? So, letting go of our dreams after failing time and time again. It’s a matter of acceptance and understanding, the same way we treat our loved ones who we let go. Letting go of your dreams doesn’t mean forgetting them. It means that you’re moving forward and that your dreams will always still be a part of you no matter where you go. Letting go of your dreams mean the same thing as living your dream: freedom. Freedom of what?

Living your dream, you’re free to do what you really want.

Letting go of your dream, you’re ready for the next stage of your life. You’re ready for your next dream. Whether it is finding the one or having children, or whatever else. Maybe it’s writing a book or watching your favorite band. Letting go means not only farewell but also a welcome for something bigger and better. For some, it’s simpler but it’s still happiness. After all, that’s what we’re all after: happiness.

What’s your dream? And whatever it is, I’ll answer, believe in it. Just remember, though, dreaming is not enough. Not only do you have to believe in it, but you have to work on it. Even waiting for the perfect partner takes a certain amount of personal growth and creating trust in the relationship.

So, what are dreams to us? Childish fantasies? Or great goals? Will you tell Martin Luther King Jr. that his dream of equality was a childish fantasies? No. Dreams define us. It speaks of the future and of happiness. It reveals who you are and it can help in creating a better world for your happiness influences others. A world without dreams is a dark dark world while a world with dreams and believers is a world of happiness and hope.

 

To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream, not only plan, but also believe.

-Anatole France

[Book Review] Paper Towns by John Green

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Paper Towns

John Green

Quentin Jacobsen has spent a lifetime loving the magnificently adventurous Margo Roth Spiegelman from afar. So when she cracks open a window and climbs back into his life—dressed like a ninja and summoning him for an ingenious campaign of revenge—he follows.

After their all-nighter ends and a new day breaks, Q arrives at school to discover that Margo, always an enigma, has now become a mystery. But Q soon learns that there are clues—and they’re for him. Urged down a disconnected path, the closer he gets, the less Q sees of the girl he thought he knew

+++++++

My Rating: 3.9/5

Staying strong to his signature style, John Green brings another fascinating young adult novel to the shelves. However, no matter how fascinating this novel is, his characters are practically the same like those in Looking for Alaska and An Abundance of Katherines and since since I have not read his masterpiece The Fault in Our Stars I had only those two to compare with this. Now, don’t get me wrong because it’s not like I stare at the words and look for similarities, but it’s because it’s kinda obvious. So that is my only issue. He needs more variety in his characters.

With that said, don’t get me wrong with this book. I mean, I would have given it a 4+ if it weren’t for the character similarities in his books.

Anyways, as for the plot, like all his other books, John Green is an amazing writer who can think of plots that are very well thought of. There is this simplicity to it but at the same time this fascinating complexity that people can relate to. It shows that you and me and everyone else around is their own world where there are numerous events going on in their head. And for this book, unlike the other 2 that I have read (namely Looking for Alaska and An Abundance of Katherines), concentrates on understanding others not in the way that we want to understand them but in the of understanding who they really are. So I would honestly have to say that this is NOT a story about searching for yourself but a story of loving and accepting others for who they REALLY are and not who we want them to be.

A story of understanding and acceptance. A story that tells you that there is no perfect relationship until we accept all the sides of a person, both good and bad. We love our family despite their faults because we grew up with them. Despite how embarrassing and annoying they could be at times, they’re still family. So why can’t we treat the others the same way? Look through the masks and see the person.

That is why I recommend this book. And that is why I adore John Green. There are life lessons in his book that we could all relate to. Lessons that speak to all of us.

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