Dear Orthodontist, I Love You

Dear Orthodontist,

I hate you.

Not you, personally, I’m sure you’re a great dude, but every bite I take brings me great pain and I blame you entirely. Also, I’m really not about these off-white rubber bands. They make my teeth look yellow. I feel like you’re sabotaging the last two years of my education.  The dentist has never bothered me. In fact, I really enjoy going to the dentist. I figured the orthodontist would be the same but no. You are ruining my life. I have to miss school, all for you. I miss hours out of my day. I see you for maybe ten minutes, you tell me what I’m doing wrong, you tell your assistant what to fix, and then you leave. WHAT ARE YOU GETTING PAID FOR?!?! It is unfair to your workers and I suggest they riot. Bring chaos down upon you. I fully support it, I’ll fund it myself. I’ll run to Dollar General tomorrow to get poster board and decorations. And glitter. Lots of glitter. Good luck getting that out of your stupid waiting room carpet. You know, the waiting room where you keep coffee, fruit snacks, and granola bars. Even though we’re not supposed to have coffee, fruit snacks, or granola bars. WHY ARE YOU TORTURING US LIKE THIS?! *sigh* But, supposedly you’re fixing my teeth, so I guess I kind of have to love you.


Yours (with boiling rage,)


P.S. I bit you in the 3rd grade when I had my retainer. You probably don’t remember because I stopped seeing you for about seven years but I want you to know that I regret nothing.

An Open Letter to my Tonsils: I miss you, please come back

An Open Letter to my Tonsils: I Miss You, Please Come Back


Post tonsillectomy, I remember waking up. I was young enough to still be at my first house. The nurse told my mom I looked so peaceful when I slept. I got you removed because I snored loudly. My parents could hear me from their bedroom across the hall. At least, that’s the reason I remember and I haven’t bothered to fact check.


When I was in elementary school I told my friends that I was going to be getting rid of you. Jeresy said she kept hers in a jar. I wanted to keep you, but never got the option. I never saw you again, but I guess I never saw you in the first place either.


I miss you, though. You were a part of me, despite me not knowing it. It just takes a little aging for us to learn about ourselves and it’s unfair I had to lose you before I even knew about you. You were the first part of me that has been taken away.


I am not the same person I was when I was nine. I mean that literally and metaphorically. From my hair, skin, and nails. All of it has changed. I lost parts of me I didn’t need, parts I had to lose. I realized how much I took these parts for granted the first time I had to learn how to chew with a new gap in my mouth.


I didn’t grow up whole, I am an entirely different body, mashed up pieces of me from when I was nine to now. Regretting the removal of something I know I don’t need. You are up there with my first baby tooth, a molar that I pulled out in art class, and my first hair cut, 12 inches of myself that I gave to someone else.


I want to know what it’s like to grow up with you. To live a life saying I have all of me intact, including something so miniscule.


So I miss you, please come back.


FIlled with Regrets,


Water Color Imperfections

I believe in imperfections.

I remember in third grade when I was handed a palate of watercolor paints, by my art teacher, for a project.

I made a painting of a koala in the woods. Then, I had the bright idea of making a burnt-out fire right next to this koala. I remember thinking, “What have I done?” In my mind, my koala painting was ruined by this fire. But, that’s the beauty of watercolor paints, they make things.

Looking outside, it’s as if someone gave Mother Nature a watercolor set when she was in third grade. It’s like all of the nature was created by the tip of her paintbrush running across the horizon as colors slowly dripped down below like rain.

However, like in my art, there are imperfections in nature. But that’s the beauty of it, watercolor paints create. And what would life be like if everything was perfect?

No snowflakes, people, or experiences are the same. No art or music exactly alike. And the differences and imperfections in all of us make us unique and independent. Imperfections make us our own people. And even if my watercolor set is broken, I can still paint my life.

If These Trees Could Talk…

If these trees could talk they would tell you about how they grew with the campus’ buildings

M&A was joined by Donnelly

Then Goppert, now Windmoor

All linked together by a courtyard, the quad


If these trees could talk they would tell you about traditions started

From frosh fest

And yard days

To wacky themes for home games


If these trees could talk they would tell you about the nervous freshman

The sophomores pretending that they have wisdom beyond their years

The juniors waiting for their turn

The seniors living everyday to the fullest and enthusiastic for their last year


If these trees could talk they would tell you about out-of-uniform sweatshirts in the fall

Tartan plaid flashes when it rains

Odd silence when it gets too icy

Students lingering a little longer in the sun when the AC seems to be below freezing


If these trees could talk they would tell you about lines out the door for the musical

Food trucks for the fine arts showcase

Truman, the campus cat, being chauffeured from building to building

Construction seemingly every year


If these trees could talk they would tell you about the tears shed when the last day comes

What seems to be angels in white caps and gowns at graduation flowing through campus

And promises made to stay in touch fulfilled at reunions

I Believe in Taking the Road Less Traveled

When I say taking the road less traveled I imagine that I am up at camp in Northern Minnesota deciding to go off of the main path and take the smaller, longer path through the woods. I’m still getting to the same place and the risk of scratching myself on branches or getting poison ivy increases, but I’ll risk all of that if it means I get to walk next to the lake. It may take even longer to get where I am going, because I stop to look at the glistening water, but once I arrive I have at least one story to tell about what I saw on my way. Since I don’t live in the woods, I have to find other ways to take the road less traveled.


Especially today when everyone is about how to get the most stuff done in a day and how to get somewhere the fastest, I believe in taking the road less traveled. When I can, I try to slow down and take a different path to break up my mundane everyday life. Usually I’m not literally taking the road less traveled, but the road less traveled by me. If I’m taking my dog for a walk we don’t follow a routine route that is going to get us home as quickly as possible. We go where we want to and we enjoy it. Once we do get home the story that I have to tell is more interesting and not only do I have a story to share, but I have a new memory.


Less literal ways of taking the road less traveled help me not necessarily break up my mundane life as much as literal roads, but they still help. Taking the road less traveled in math, is looking a problem differently and solving it using a different, unusual method. Interpreting a prompt differently in english makes for an intriguing essay. And, when coming across a complication I try to take a step back and look at it differently.


From the experiences that I’ve had I’ve noticed that instead of just opening the back door and letting my dog out in the backyard in the morning, if I go out and play with him, then I get a breath of fresh air and get to see him run around and discover new things. One night, I was going to feed my bird in the living room and I took the road less traveled around the couch. Which led me to look out the window and I got to see a coyote. Life is too short to take a traveled road. Most people can’t quit their jobs and leave everything behind to go out in the world and experience new things, but everyone can take their own road. People can take their own path and have a handful of miniature adventures everyday. Now I’ll leave you with a quote from Robert Frost’s poem The Road Not Taken that I believe in and has changed my life, “I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.”


Mental illnesses are waves

Some big, some small  

They show warning signs

They hit  

One after the other  

And then another

Knocking you off your feet

Dragging you out to sea

You’ll swim towards shore

You come so close  

Just to be pulled back  

Sometimes farther than before

The pushing and pulling

Disorienting you

To where it’s all too much

The stinging strong smell of the salt overtaking the air

Infiltrating your lungs making it hard to breathe

The slimy water clinging to your skin

Like seaweed trapping you  

The crashing and thrashing of the waves

Breaking against your skin

The bitterness overtaking your tongue

As you gag unable to catch your breath

The water weighing you down

Bringing you to the bottom


You feel like you’re drowning  

being overtaken by it all

With no one to save you

No matter how loud you scream

Unable to swim  

Sinking until you can’t breathe  

Watching the waves crash down on you

Fighting to live

You push yourself from the sand

All the way to the breaking waves

Seeing the sun rise on the horizon

Beginning a new day

You may never make it all the way

But enough to survive  

People may never see

How far or how hard you swam

They may never understand

How it felt to drown

And to keep swimming after

Through the true deep and dark sea


Now I look back

With my friends and they

See how hard I swam

How much I struggled

And they support me even when its hard


I know I can breathe

Even when I smell the salty sea

Even with the slimy feeling

That never seems to leave

Even when I feel the waves strike my skin

Even with the overpowering taste

Always on the back of my tongue

I know I can live



On Missing Poptarts

Poptarts have actually always been my favorite food. When I was a little girl I would beg for poptarts, but then get so hyper from the sugar that I was running around the house and bouncing off of walls. So my mother stopped buying them, saving the pastry for special occasions.
As I got older, my love of Poptarts remained, but my relationship with food changed. At 13 years old, my eating disorder began creeping into my life. I had been repulsed by my body for as long as I could remember, and didn’t have the healthiest habits. I connected the dots, and my chronic-perfectionist brain decided to ‘fix’ the problem.
What began as just ridding my diet of overly sugary or fatty items and replacing them with whole foods, quickly turned into obsessively tracking every calorie and body-checking at every chance. The first time I scanned a poptart nutrition label after changing my lifestyle, i cried. I just… couldn’t. One pastry is usually 200 calories, and loaded with sugar. To put that in perspective: for almost a year of my life I only allowed myself 600 calories (often less) in a day.
A treat that I once adored as a carefree child, was villianized by my new warped mindset of the world. I wouldn’t ‘allow’ myself any food of that nature. The only time I dared eat one was with a friend at a competition in 9th grade. Later that night, my throat tightened at the memory, tears from my consuming guilt breaking free.
I’m in recovery now, desperately trying to undo the damage I inflicted on my body. But the fear won’t go away. I still can’t bring myself to eat a Poptart.

*Pfft What’s A Title?*

How dare you shout from the rooftops about the country you “support”

When following its values is something you ignore?


What are you proud of, exactly?

The parents that contemplate divorce because they don’t make enough money to pay their daughter’s medical bills but too much to qualify for help with their combined incomes?

Or is that just a fake news story to you?


Are you proud of all the students that infect everyone at school because they won’t risk paying 300 dollars just to have a doctor tell them “Wait it out, stay hydrated, and get a good night’s sleep?”


Are you proud of GoFundMe Accounts titled “Ten Years Old W/ Leukemia, Please Help?”


No. No, you aren’t proud of any of these things. You regularly shame them for asking for help rather than working all 168 hours in the week to afford the shattered system you refuse to fix.

So This Is Kansas City…

So this is Kansas City,

The place that isn’t just in Kansas.

The place that’s technically a city but there sure are a lot of cows…

And CHICKENS! Why does everyone seem to have chickens?

The downtown cityscape is surrounded by suburbs that seem to hate each other just because it’s something to do and everybody seems to have something to say about everything, whether they were asked about it or not.

So this is Kansas City

Where there’s a history of segregation and separation but hardly enough people for it to make sense.

Kansas City- where methamphetamine and Monarchs make stains and art gets confused with shuttlecocks and overpriced sandwiches.

But this is Kansas City, where even with the division of the masses, the individuals have always been able to come together, like the nearly 6000 people willing to walk the plaza for gun control, and the buildings still find a way to be beautiful when their next-door neighbors are crumbling to pieces…

*To Be Continued

Too young

Too young

Being young is hard

You don’t have money

You are going through changes

That you never prepared for

People will say that you are too young

Too young to know yourself

Too young to know pain

Too young to know what’s right

No matter what you do

You will always be too young

Maybe I am too young

But maybe you are too old

Times are changing

Yet you are still in the past

It’s time you join us in the present


Your generation is no longer in power

The youth are speaking

It’s best if you listen


I am not too young

I know who I am

I am not too young

I know I have depression

I am not too young

I know that every human being

Deserves to live

I am not too young


We are the generation of social media

We spread information and speak our minds

I may not be able to vote

But I will be damned if my voice does not get heard

I will yell and scream

You call it a tantrum

I call it a riot

We are ready for the fight

Are you?


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