This I Believe...Annabelle
What defines a value?
A value, to me, is a belief or a concept that one holds high in regard and supports or strongly agrees with. A collection of values is what makes up a person's philosophy or outlook on life.
The above virtues I have listed are just concepts that I stand the strongest with. The ideal trifecta of values, in my opinion, is one consisting of patience, knowledge, and respect, though it is not limited to just those three. I simply believe that if everyone could be patient and respect one another, as well as be knowledgeable with their actions, then so many problems with differences and rifts in our society could be resolved.
How do I plan to express those beliefs?
I plan to elaborate on my statements above in an essay. Though constructing one and beginning it may seem like a daunting task, I don't think I could say everything I want to say and properly express my values visually. While it's true that images speak louder than words, I hope an essay component would allow me to thoroughly explain why I believe so strongly in the values I chose.
My response to my first day in "This I Believe" was that I was pleasantly surprised. I half-expected this program to be more focused on poetry than planning a project on my outlook, and why I believe that my outlook is valid. However, I am enjoying the prospect of planning a way with which I will express my "philosophy".
Annabelle’s Value Report Card
Patience – B
I rate myself a B because I try not to lose my temper with people and forgive them. However, I am not perfect, and I still get visibly frustrated when someone’s words rub me the wrong way. A way I could improve my patience would be to just not get too heated with what people say to me.
The reason I give myself a higher grade with knowledge is because scholarship and learning has always been one of my purposes in life. But I digress, because I’m not an absolute poster child for my education. I’m human, I lose motivation to learn sometimes, but in the end, it still matters to me.
Respect – C
My rating for respect is average, because I try very hard to be respectful to everyone. But I can be rude and curt with people, and I interrupt people sometimes. Still, I respect authority and I wouldn’t consider myself a completely disrespectful person.
Credo by Annabelle
I believe in the collaboration of brilliant minds,
The forgiveness to find in others,
The struggles that make us emerge stronger,
The light at the end of the tunnel,
The pursuit of true and eternal happiness.
Determination, freedom, individuality.
But the mentality that others can make you feel inferior without your consent is false in every respect.
I believe in giving more than you take,
I believe in love that makes us simultaneously vulnerable and invincible,
I believe in choosing a job with passion over practicality,
Having the courage to seek the wisdom that will grant you power.
And I believe in the single step that starts a million miles.
Reaction to Day 2?
My response to my second day in this program is that I am very excited. I was glad today that I was able to construct an actual free-verse poem. I don't know why, maybe my writer's block is improving, but I felt very satisfied with what I included in the final product. I am interested to see where this string of beliefs that I'm fleshing out will lead me, especially in my ultimate goal, an essay.
Sidewalk Chalk Art
Expression, Strength, Intelligence
Nothing matters more to me than dreaming and music.
Selflessness is important to me.
Originality is important to me.
Humor is important to me.
Acceptance should be more prominent in society.
Too much pessimism is unhealthy, but it can assist in good judgment.
There is a lot of creativity and innovation in the world.
Life can be taken for granted.
Too many stories pass us by and become forgotten.
Reaction to Day 3?
Today, it was definitely fun to have the opportunity to illustrate our thoughts about our beliefs with sidewalk chalk outside the building. I also enjoy constructing poems based on pre-decided formulas. To me, it's easier because you don't have to focus as much on the rhythm, but it doesn't take away from the meaning, message, or effort put into the poem. The viewing of someone's essay also helped me get a better idea of what I could do for the thought process and prewriting of my own essay.
Someday I will be independent.
Someday I will pursue my passions.
Someday I will go to college.
Someday my efforts will pay off.
Someday I won’t need a role-model to represent me.
Someday I will be a force for positivity.
Someday I will be able to inspire others.
Someday everyone around me will realize their dreams.
Someday my legacy will be a beacon of hope for those who are lost.
A Glimpse of Happiness
“Laughter is an instant cure-all.”
I am gazing out of the window of life.
Through the panes, I see two young men.
A pair of best friends, still in college,
Sitting on the edge of a rushing fountain.
The sound of their laughter is deafening,
And their jubilance is undeniably contagious.
I feel myself grinning and laughing along with them.
The two are pursuing their careers together,
And doggedly following this dream has shown them true happiness.
One of them is pushed into the fountain, and I can almost taste the cold water he is plunged in.
It is almost as if he is reborn as a newer, happier person from the fountain,
As he rises, still giggling uncontrollably.
This scene at the fountain might seem ordinary to someone,
But I know this is a memory the friends cherish.
Essay Idea Outline
I. Paragraph one – Introduction to happiness
a. Include a quote pertaining to happiness?
b. Explain that happiness is a virtue we should all value and spread, and that laughter is the best way to spread it.
c. Provide that music and comedy has always been close to my heart.
d. Elaborate that pursuing what you love can make you happy, and have a positive impact on others as well.
e. Linking sentence, segway into story.
II. Paragraph two – Exposition and rising action of narrative
a. Tell about a point in my life where I was very unhappy with the world and disagreeable with a lot of people in it; I was extremely pessimistic.
b. Introduce little-known YouTube cinematographer and musician, Daniel Kyre, details about Cyndago.
c. Include details of how I came across his work and instantly fell in love, how his sketch comedy put me in a good enough mood to make those around me laugh.
d. Definitely touch on the fact that he was someone who inspired me to learn music as a hobby.
III. Paragraph three – Daniel’s death and legacy (falling action)
a. Turning point, in which I find out about Daniel Kyre’s suicide in September of 2015.
b. Short details about how I was in shock and mourning; it felt like I’d lost a friend and an idol.
c. Explain as to why I learned from his life and his outlook, which was to pursue your dreams with reckless abandon, and to make everyone around you feel a little better. Always realize your self-worth, and help others to realize that they matter as well.
d. Provide that I was set on carrying out his philosophy, because it was clear that Daniel was unhappy with some things in his life, but somehow he was still able to inspire me and bring light to my day when it seemed like things couldn’t get worse.
IV. Paragraph four – Conclusion and more emphasis on happiness
a. Bring the concept of happiness and its importance home in the “finale”
b. Reiterate that it can help so many people out of depressing ruts.
c. State that it isn’t the “spoon-feeding” or giving of happiness to someone, as I found it in Daniel’s videos and his music – it’s the pursuit of a lifestyle that can motivate you and make you smile or laugh everyday.
Reaction to Day 4?
After spending about four days prepping for this, I've finally delved into the actual work behind this big project, and I've firmly settled on a topic and a true story behind my beliefs that I'm happy to write about. I have most of my outline mapped out, and I'm mostly sure about what my essay will convey and how I'm going to construct it. I was excited about today and finally being able to begin. Not to mention the continuation of writing poems is always something I enjoy in this class.
Thoughts for the final stretch of this class?
What I'm expecting for the upcoming class sessions is to smooth out the details of this project and get it started. I'm hoping to get at least a rough draft finished soon. I'm working on finding a quote specifically about the "pursuit of happiness".
Reaction to Day 5?
Today was a very productive work day, at least on my behalf. Upon almost finishing my rough draft, I have the basis down and a ton of details to fill in. I still have some perfecting, revising, and editing to do with what I have, along with helping the flow of my words and inserting some more specific vocabulary. I have most of the details of what I want to do fleshed out and the main idea is clear, but I still have a ways to go.
Day 6 morning thoughts...
I'm currently psyching myself up to continue writing and finishing the first draft of my essay. After mulling my thoughts over in my head overnight, I have a better idea of how I want to reword some phrases and add more details. Otherwise, I'm ready to get going.
Reaction to Day 6?
It was good for me to get feedback and insight from a teacher's perspective. I feel much further along in the writing process, and about the first half of my essay I'm sure will be transferred to the final draft. I scrapped a lot of ideas, formulated new ones, and recycled and polished some old ideas. I think I'm going to sleep on some of my thoughts and come up with ways to explain my thoughts in vivid and accurate detail.
Day 7 morning thoughts...
I'm excited to see how my writing goes today. I still have to thoroughly proofread the second half of my original draft and add some thoughts. The process has all boiled down to rephrasing some thoughts that are worded a bit strangely.
This I believe…
Writing, Collage, Poetry
June 30, 2016
c-13 computer lab (JEJ Moore)
Mom & Dad;
All of us have worked very hard for the past few days to design ways to express what we believe. There will be short presentations from everyone including picture collages, poems, and essays. Please come by during the last thirty minutes of class to see all that we’ve created!
An excerpt from my essay rough draft:
"...Then, I somehow discovered an amazing person with a knack for making comedy sketches and composing original music on YouTube – Daniel Kyre. I came across his work and I instantly fell in love. The content he created singlehandedly and in a filming duo called Cyndago made me laugh and put me in such a good mood I managed to spread that positivity with those around me. It was an extreme contrast from how I’d been feeling most of that summer. Daniel was a talented musician and he inspired me to dedicate my time to music, which is something I stuck with. The combination of his weekly uploads and all the while I spent trying to learn music some way made me forget whatever was bothering me. I reconciled with my friends after being reclusive from them for some time, because I realized how happy they made me at times.
Though he sparked something new in me that wanted to create and wanted everyone around me to feel the same, that motivation was put on hold when I received some crushing information in September of 2015. Daniel Kyre was taken off of life support after an apparent suicide attempt. The news came as a shock to me, since he never showed signs – at least on camera – of struggling. I felt as though I’d lost a friend, an idol, a role model; I felt awful because I had never reached out to Daniel and told him how much he’d impacted my life. Had I never found his work to give me that inspirational push, it’s possible I’d still be in that dull, pessimistic mindset. All that he’d managed to do made me want to become a force for good. ..."
From what I’ve seen, too many people take happiness and life for granted. Happiness is a virtue everyone needs to cherish because happiness is what gets us through the day, and what keeps us grounded. I know what is truly important to me is pursuing a passion that can make not only yourself feel amazing, but others as well. The belief that finding what you love and doing it has always been something I value.
Why do I believe this to be true? Well, because of my personal experience. Let me share with you a time in my life when I was unhappy with the world, myself, and preferred to stay away from people. The community I live in is near a military base, and some families are stationed here with no guarantees for how long. Frequently the stay is only a few months, and to me, this had just been a fact of life. That was until I felt the pain of losing a close friend to this move. The loss of my friend inflicted a lingering sense of sadness, anger and unfairness. In other words, I was generally disagreeable and unmotivated at that point in my life. Mentally, I was in a gray and colorless place in which I was hesitant to be attached to anyone. I was terse, and I had become very introverted and withdrawn from my friends. That summer came to be one of the most isolated and lonely ones I’d ever seen.
Then, I somehow discovered an amazing person with a knack for making comedy sketches and composing original music on YouTube – Daniel Kyre. I came across his work, and I instantly fell in love. The content he created singlehandedly and in a filming duo called Cyndago made me laugh and put me in such a good mood I managed to spread that positivity with those around me. It was an extreme contrast from how I’d been feeling most of that summer. Daniel was a talented musician, and he inspired me to dedicate my time to music, which is something I stuck with. The combination of his weekly uploads and all the while I spent learning music made me forget whatever was plaguing me. This change of demeanor led me to reconcile with my friends after avoiding them for so long.
That motivation was put on hold when I received some crushing information in September of 2015. Daniel Kyre was taken off of life support after an apparent suicide attempt. The news came as a shock to me since I never knew him to be suffering. Though he often made personal logs on camera of how he felt about his journey on YouTube and seemingly legitimate messages, it struck me how Daniel had more to his story than he was showing. I felt as though I’d lost a friend, an idol, a role model; I felt awful because I had never reached out to Daniel and told him how much he’d impacted my life. Had I never found his work to give me that inspirational push, it’s probable I’d still be in that dull, pessimistic mindset. All that he’d managed to do made me want to become a force for good.
Tragic as his passing was, I took something more from Daniel’s life and his legacy. This loss, though emotionally colossal, didn’t shut me down. I found it amazing how he chased his passions, such as producing music, cinematography, and making both satirical and serious short skits. Moreover, I realized how important happiness is to me. I didn’t want more people to find themselves in Daniel’s situation, and I still believe more solidly than ever that everyone should know they are worth more than they may think.
Happiness, to me, can mean hope, inspiration, courage, and even confidence, depending on what you take away from it. Since the world lost Daniel Kyre, I’ve never stopped believing in everyone around me just a little bit more. Furthermore, I’ve wanted spark within everyone the same passion Daniel sparked in me to create and carry on. I know everyone sees struggles and hurdles in their lifetime, but if what I’ve gone through has taught me anything, finding what makes you happy and sticking with it is a highly effective way to stay strong. This I believe, striving to pursue what makes you happy with reckless abandon and inspiring others along the way.
Reaction to Day 7?
I'm very glad that I got to mostly finish my essay and grammar check its composition. I'm just about ready to present what I have, though I know I need to practice saying and presenting it. Hopefully the presentation will go well, because I don't think I could make it much better.
Day 8 morning thoughts...
So it's the dawn of the final day. I'm interested to see how all these presentations will go, since I haven't seen any of the collages yet. I've also been mentally preparing myself to present my essay, and hopefully the presentation will be successful.
I'm glad I decided to take this class, because I think it was a good experience and a good workshop for my writing skills and focusing on my beliefs. It was something I had never really given much thought to before and I know I can reflect on those beliefs when I'm older, and after some of them might have changed or become stronger.