Looking back I don’t think there wasn’t exactly one defining moment when I decided I wanted to be a journalist and that I wanted to write. I always loved writing. But there are three (plus a bonus) moments that have stuck with me.
The first moment where I realize I had a possible creative mind was in the fifth grade. I was taking the FCAT (remember that) and I had to write a narrative. I remember it involved making up a story and the story I created for some reason involved animals. It was a safari adventure in Africa where I was trying to rescue these animals from poachers. I had a wild imagination. Even though I was taking the FCAT I remember just being happy. At that moment a seed was placed.
The second moment was when I was in the 7th grade and I met Johanna. We became friends very quickly. She’s an incredibly gifted writer, pianist and singer. She would write these amazing stories that I would fall in love with. Characters that had these big personalities and were filled with wonderful details. It was astounding. I started to write my own stories after reading hers. I remember having composition books for classes and I would flip towards the end to write stories. The seed that was planted in 5th grade was beginning to blossom.
The last (there is a bonus after) and most important moment was when I enter high school and I was placed in a regular English class. To this day that class was torture. Not because the work was hard but because it was so easy. I would be bored every other day. My teacher, Ms. Marmol felt horrible for me. Now as much as I loved writing I was average. My scores were always average, nothing special. But when I stepped into Ms. Marmol’s class in the 9th grade things changed. I remember writing essays in that class thinking, you know I’ll probably get 4’s like I’ve gotten my whole entire life but then I landed a 5. I was shocked. I stared at the paper in disbelief. Afterwards I started getting 6’s. I was flabbergasted. Ms. Marmol and my classmates would say how great my writing was. I felt proud to hear that because I was being acknowledged for something that I liked doing. And looking back now, the reason I believe my writing improved drastically was because I was reading higher level books. I was reading the same amount of books (which was a lot) but the books had higher vocabulary, more complex plots and complicated characters. I was getting all of this knowledge from books and it was being reflected through my writing. Ms. Marmol used to say I was a fluffy writer, which means I love pulling on emotions. I honestly still do.
I didn’t realize I wanted to be a journalist just yet though. I had no idea what I wanted to do because as a creative person I loved so many things. Still do. Even so I decided to go with journalism right as I started applying for colleges because I’m a curious person and I just liked writing. I also liked the idea of radio and television mixed in. I really waited until the last minute to decide and even when I made that decsion I wasn’t even sure it was what I wanted. Yet it’s been the best decision ever. Reflecting back I’ve always been a curious kid, a good listener and a good wirter. Everything a journalist needs to be. I realized how much I really do love communications and everything that comes with it.
I have to mention one more moment to finish up this blog post. The bonus! It still involves Ms. Marmol’s class. It’s a moment that will forever be ingrained in my mind because it gave me a boost of confidence in my writing. I had to write a story using certain vocabulary words. I was really excited because I had complete creative freedom to write whatever it was that I wanted. I remember writing the story and I really loved it. I was incredibly nervous to turn it in because although Ms. Marmol was an amazing caring teacher she could be really tough. She called me up to the table to show me my score , “this is really good. I cried.” I remember being stunned. I just stood there and I was like “really?” She went “yeah, this is really good.” I couldn’t process what she said. My writing had made someone incredibly strong cry. I was floored and it was then I realized what my writing could do and ever since then I loved it.
After years of contemplation I decided to start this blog and to actually be more consistent with it. And some of you all seem to really like it, which honestly throws me for a loop sometimes. Whenever my friends say they feel touched, it’s relatable or something that they needed to hear it makes me feel good. It means a lot to me. Therefore I just wanted to say thank you to you all for taking your time to read what I’m writing. Sometimes I don’t know if what I’m writing even make sense. So with that being said, I’ve decided to insert the story I made that made Ms. Marmol cry. This is the first story that I’ve ever truly felt proud of. For me it’s something that I’m always going to keep because it was a defining moment. It’s something to look back on and to see how far I’ve come.
I hope you all enjoy. Thank you.
A cold winter day; the wind was breezy and snow littered the ground. Everyone was bustling, rushing to run last-minute Christmas shopping. She, however, was walking a narrow cobbled stone road that paved its way through central park. She gripped her coat tight against her body, a pink carnation in her hand. There were kids having a snow ball fight, enjoying a care free day of no school. She remembered when she used to cherish those days, sleeping in, the years where her parents took care of her, but now she was on her own. Although she loved it, it wasn’t the same as coming home to home cooked meals, a clean room. She sighed, her breath coming out in white puffs. An old wooden bench was up ahead and she thought it was a good idea to give her legs a rest. As she sat down, the old wood creaked beneath her weight. She slowly ran her shaky fingers around the rail, feeling the coldness seep into her pale skin. She relaxed with ease. On the corner of the seat something was scratched into the bench. Lucy + Zack . A smile graced her thin lips. A girl who had been playing in the snow sat next to her. “Is this seat taken?” She asked her voice out of breath. “Oh no, please sit.” The girl smiled. She looked about eighteen. The girl had also taken notice of the letters stitched into the bench. “I always wonder the stories of these people.” The girl smiled softly. The lady nodded, “I could tell you if you would care to listen.” The girl looked up with curiosity, “sure.”
Laughter. Always laughter when she was with him. His brown eyes shone with nervousness. He had been edgy all day and she couldn’t seem to wrap her mind around as to why he was. He took her slender hand into his and she relished the feel of her body frail and small against his chest, making her feel safe. Winter had arrived and she couldn’t be any more excited. Snow was falling, painting New York City like a winter wonderland. They were walking through Central Park again. She sloppily made a snow ball and weakly threw it at him. He smiled and began chasing her. Naturally, he caught her, wrapping his arms around her waist, picking her up. Her laughter, like bells, filled the cold December air. He couldn’t have been happier seeing her smile. His heart pounded with anticipation. Her heart pounded with excitement. He had decided to set down at a bench. Once they had both caught their breath, she kissed him softly on the cheek. Tears pricked her eyes, “thank you.” He shook his head and tucked a stray hair behind her ear. “There is something I want to say to you.” She nodded, becoming attentive. Now she felt nervous. His hands began shaking but not from the cold. “We’ve have known each other for what? Ten years? And it has been amazing, being with you, being your best friend and more. I’ve watched you grow up into an amazing person that is indescribable. You were there when my father died and helped take care of my mom. I was there when your dad had a stroke. We always had each other’s back.” Both of their hearts began pounding against their chest like a hummingbird. “I am so completely grateful that you are a part of my life. I am madly, deeply, and so…so…in love with you that I’m not sure you’ll ever understand. And I want us to spend the rest of our lives together…as husband and wife.” His hands continued to shake as he revealed a slender ring with a tiny pearl. It was small, dainty, and simple. It was her. She looked up in shock, tears glistening down her cheeks. She nodded speechless. She kissed him, bringing him close, smelling his cologne. He was beyond cloud nine. It was a moment he would never forget.
Months later it was their wedding. Everyone was scurrying trying to figure everything out. The groom standing next to the priest looked uncomfortable in his monkey suit. His leg kept shaking impatiently. He was worrying about whether she would show up or not. He loved her and she loved him. He shook his head of the incredulously stupid thought. She kept pacing back and forth in the room. She was trying to take deep breaths. She tugged at her lace sleeves. Her hair pinned in delicate curls, her veil edged with laced covered her ruby-red lips. Her gown that was also trimmed with lace hugged her body and flowed down and swirled around her unto the floor. She felt like a princess marrying her Prince Charming. She giggled to herself at the childish thought. A knock on the door made her jump. Her father stood in his suit, a blush pink carnation in his breast pocket. “Ready?” He asked. She nodded taking his hand. The music was playing and the door was opening, people, her family, his family, their friends staring at her with undeniable joy. The light streamed from the painted glass windows. The snow was falling again. Everything seemed to glow. As she made her way down the floor scattered with white and baby pink petals her eyes had finally found his. Were those tears? He looked breathlessly handsome and she looked breathtaking. Once again their hearts hammered. He reached for her hand and she gladly took it. She felt at home now, all the jitters they had seemed to melt away. It felt like it was only them. There was no family or friends. There was only her, him, and the priest ready to bond their lives together. They had exchange vows that had brought them both to tears. The priest even had tears! It was a magical sight when he had said, “you may now kiss the bride.” She had jumped the gun and quickly pressed her lips against him, sighing at the sensation. She could feel him smile. They looked into each other’s eyes. It was a moment she would never forget.
His hands were shaking. He quickly crumpled the letter and threw it in the trash. He looked around his office and his eyes landed on the wedding picture. He took a deep breath. He couldn’t. He couldn’t destroy the smile that was staring at him. How could he? His shook his head, tears in his eyes. He gripped his hands together. “I can’t.” He whispered into an empty room. His breathing was shallow as his mind raced with detrimental thoughts. He couldn’t, he couldn’t do it. He stood up quickly and with a quick sweep of his hand shoved all the papers and insipid supplies off his desk. What was the use? He wouldn’t need them anymore. He strolled to the bookshelf on his right, pulling out books and throwing them against the floor. What’s the use? He would never read them again. He grabbed his glass cups and smashed them against the door. What’s the use? He would never drink again. Never taste her lips, her cooking, nothing. He would never feel anything. At the moment he hated everything. He hated his job, his car, his body, his doctor, but mostly himself. He hated how weak he become, how his body was betraying him. He was supposed to be the strong one. He was supposed to be her rock, her anchor. Now he was dying. He was going to leave her all alone. At that moment he broke down on the floor. How could he ever leave her? He wept. He wept for the world, for himself, for the angel who he would leave behind. At that moment the door creaked open and she stepped in eyeing the room like a scared child. Her eyes found his tear stricken face. Her heart broke and she wrapped herself around his frail body, rocking back and forth, whispering dolce words, attempting to tame the broken heart. She was giving her his strength. “I can’t,” he whispered in such a broken voice that she began crying. “I’m going to die. I’m going to leave you.” She was trying to take it all in. She shook her head and kissed his forehead. “We will always be together.” She gripped his face, forcing him to look into her eyes. It was almost too much, the love in her eyes, the courage it took for her to say that. He could never forget this moment, not even when the black raven would take his soul. He will never forget this.
The machine beeped eerily. She couldn’t stand the damn thing. Her hand was clutched into his as he breathed deeply. She smiled as she noticed his gold band shinning against his frail finger. A nurse came in checking the machine. “Boy is it cold outside.” She said as she tightened her cardigan. “As usual,” the woman said. The nurse left them alone. He took deep breath before opening his eyes to heaven. She was still beautiful. She was his heaven, although her hair was a bit more gray and she had a few wrinkles, she was still magnificent. He couldn’t be any happier that she was by his side. It wasn’t supposed to turn out like this. He should be the strong one not the other way around. “Hello there Prince Charming.” He smiled at the nickname. His chuckle began to turn into a fit of aching coughs. She frowned. He hated when she frowned. He hated that she was worried. He smiled, “nothing to worry about honey.” She shook her head. But then her lip began to tremble. She was trying so hard to be strong for him. He cupped her cheek. “Everything is going to be fine. Don’t worry!” His voice was nothing but a strained whisper. She shook her head, tears falling, failing to keep them in. “But…I love you.” He nodded, still smiling. He sat up, his bones feeling old and creaky. He kissed her forehead, hoping to pass what little strength he had into her. “And I will always love you.” They looked into each other’s eyes, full of love, full of memories. A moment they would never forget.
The girl looked up with shiny eyes. “I want something like that.” She whispered in a shaky voice. The woman smiled. “You can if you find the right guy.” The woman giggled. A boy around the girl’s age came up to them. “Jessica the movie is going to start soon.” The boy didn’t seem to notice the old lady. Jessica nodded taking his hand. He began pulling away. “Wait! Let me say goodbye!” She ran back to the bench. Her eyebrows furrowed. The lady had disappeared like the cold winter wind. “To whom?” the boy asked, oblivious. The girl looked from the boy to the bench. All that was left was the pink carnation. She gently picked it up, smelling its sweet smell, tears coming back. “Jess what’s wrong?” The boy asked worried. She smiled at the letters that were embedded into the bench. She wrapped her arm around him, leaning into his chest. “Nothing, let’s make it to the movie.” The boy smiled looking down at the most beautiful girl he had ever seen. Snow was falling, painting her like an angel. Both of their eyes gleamed. It was a moment she would never forget.