tornado snapshot 

Contemplating back and forth, her heart finally won and she was packing a bag to head home for the weekend. There was no way that she could miss a “tornado party.” She decided that she wouldn’t tell anyone either. Climbing into the car, the young girl was nervous. This would be the first time in over three months that she would see most of these people. The two hours quickly passed and as she pulled up to her house she thought, “this is it.” Her legs sore and with slightly shaky hands the young girl walked through the front door. The house was semi quiet. Out of the large rectangular glass sliding doors the young girl could see what she considered almost her whole family congregating in the backyard. Lively chatter and a warm hint of the start of summer filled the environment around her. Opening the slightly heavy door, her eyes meet her momma. Walking over to her, a fountain of emotion was ready to pour over. The young girl hugged her momma and fully embraced the moment. For the first time she was crying happy tears. It was a moment permanently embedded in her heart. Noticing her sisters were nowhere to be found she makes her way back inside. The young girl could hear the unapologetic laughter filling a bedroom. Peeking around the corner she catches their attention. Faces immediately light up with such shock and happiness. Two of the three little bits begin to cry as they notice their older sister unable to contain herself. The wait was beyond worth anything she could fathom. God was allowing her a much sweeter moment than she could imagine. The next few hours would be filled with silly pictures, delicious food and priceless memories to fill her bank. This was home to her. 

Taking a moment, the young girl flashes back to a day permanently embedded in her mind. April 27, 2011. It was a Wednesday. Not even fifteen minutes into class the school was already on lockdown. Just barely after 8:00 am, outside the classroom window was pitch black. The principal herded the students into the large auditorium, the only room without windows. She didn’t think anything of it. A tornado watch was in close proximity. The principal, after about an hour on lockdown, decides that it would be best to send the students home. Once arriving home it was like a complete flip. The sky had gone from rich charcoal gray to an airy light blue with the fluffiest clouds. 

pop of color 

“Boldly be a pop of color in a black and white world” – unknown 

{moment :// an indefinitely short period of time; instant}

The young girl was having another “moment.” A moment where sometimes out of nowhere a wave of words spit out of her brain. A moment where she just needed to let someone else hear it. All grammar and proper English was out the window for the time being. She wasn’t worried about that. Right now, the young girl needed to simply express herself. Picking up her phone she did what she knew best during these random situations. Scrolling through the contacts she finds her sister and lets her fingers type away. 

 

So I just need to get this out… mental illness sucks. Like it manipulates your brain and puts these corrupt labels on you. Depression. Anxiety. PTSD. Eating disorder. Whatever. Our world has all of these horrific stereotypes and then mental illness swoops in and fuels the fire. Then what makes it worse is that it consumes the brain so much that it begins to become blind to who the person actually is. And then the wonderfully created soul forgets that they love Mexican food and gets super excited over baby elephants or farm animals or the fact that they love to sing any and every song regardless of who is around and that they love every single soul they come in contact with regardless of what they look like or the stereotype the world molds around them ; they love the person for their heart. They forget that their favorite candy is gummy bears and anything chocolate or that the drive in movie theater encompasses their idea of summer. They forget that they have an ever loving wildly free spirit and that exploring new adventures rejuvenates their mind and soul. They forget that sometimes it’s ok to just cry for no reason or hide somewhere squished in a corner for a moment. They forget that snuggling up at the movie theater makes their heart smile or that sitting on the beach makes them feel the safest. They forget that their heart screams for joy over the smallest of things and the overwhelming sense of pride watching their littles accomplish something. They forget that they love getting lost in a good book and can’t control their excitement for learning new things. Like those things are what make the person so unique and wonderful not some awful disease or “label.”

The young girl took a breath of fresh air. She thought about how it was so easy to get tangled up in her monster’s lies but she wanted to strive for mindfulness. Knowing that the lies would never fully diminish, she knew she held the strength to fight off the demons. Her Heavenly Father had created her so uniquely different from the rest of the world that the young girl did not want to conform to the colorless environment. It was important to acknowledge the lies and quickly replace them with truth. The young girl is not defined by a label her society places on her but by the way she carries and expresses herself. There’s no fun in hiding behind labels or letting one thing make up a person. The various “labels” are what form the young girl like a puzzle piece all constructed together to form a beautiful picture.