The Importance of friendship.

” Good friends help you to find important things when you have lost them… your smile, your hope, and your courage.” -Doe Zantamata

My girls!

How do I somehow manage to remain sane through everything? well here’s the secret! find some wonderful humans who challenge you and bring out the best in you.

Constantly moving from neighborhood to neighborhood as a kid and transferring in and out of schools, I never made an effort to talk to others, “what’s the point? I’ll be moving again anyways.” was always my mentality. I Spent the first 16 years of my life being the awkward,quiet, and shy kid. I was bullied all throughout Elementary school and Middle school. I was the out cast, The weird one that nobody wanted to invite anywhere or talk to, I let the views and option of others towards me affect my own and I saw myself as someone worthless and not capable of ever having anyone genuinely care about them. I had such a low view of myself and I chose to give into everyone’s views and rumors and hate myself.

“One day we’ll finally learn to love ourselves and stop apologizing for the things that make us who we are.” -R.m. Drake

Everything changed when I entered High school. It was a chance to ” Re-invent” myself, And I was determined not to let other’s views of me affect my own. I struggled at first, I felt the need to constantly change my image and be different. I dyed my hair almost every 2 months, I didn’t really talk to anyone except for a couple of people I had met through two friends I had made that year. I never really bothered to talk to people, I headed to my classes did what was expected and then headed home at the end of the day. One of the classes that I will always be thankful for is Theater. I was assigned to a drama 1 class that year, I hated it at first.

 You see, I was never the person to speak out.  My Drama 1 teacher helped me get out of my shell. Most of our tests in that class consisted of portraying different emotions (acting sad, being over joyed, Etc) it helped me gain the confidence I no longer thought I had.

I joined a lot of Clubs that year. I became involved in as many plays as I could and my love for theater grew! I learned to laugh with myself and just embrace my flaws. My friends and family saw a change in me. I no longer cared about what others thought of me. I made an effort to talk to others and Made many friends, It was a change I genuinely liked.

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      I started going to Church again and made friends there. My Church has a youth group for inner city teens and has many fellowship activities for the teens. It is thanks to my workers pushing me to go the activities, that I made more friends, friends who had the same views and beliefs as me.

I remained involved in all of the plays and volunteered as much as I could. little by little I was becoming the outgoing kid, I no longer struggled to make conversations with others.

” Find a group of people that Challenge and inspire you. Spend a lot of time with them, and it will change your life.”

Amy Poehler
Marvel Squad

You see when we let others views of us affect us, we change, we shut ourselves out and are quick to think that there is something wrong with us when there isn’t. All our life we try and try to impress others and change ourselves so much and loose sight of who we really are.

I was lucky enough to find people who accepted me for who I really was. see that’s the thing about friends, they help us believe in ourselves when we can’t, they are the ones we’re so quick to call when we need a shoulder to cry on, the ones we laugh with in the good times, and the ones we make endless memories with. Who you surround yourself with will determine who you become.

My sundays

How exactly do I spend my sundays.? simple I wake up at 6am ( sometimes after only getting 3 hours of sleep) get ready finish up anything that I need to have done for that day, then get picked up at 7:30am. My day then starts! I get on a big blue bus and make my way to a seat and I am greeted by an eager little girl with a big smile across her face. her excitement is contageous, and I am once again reminded why we do what we do on the weekends, For others, for them to know about our Savior and what He did for us on that Cross.

It is from those short conversations during the 45 ride up to Indiana that I find Happiness in, seeing how happy my bus kids/ bus riders get when they share with me what happened during their week. My day then continues by heading to open assembly where many other college age girls as well as Myself Teach and Sing songs / hymns with those girls we picked up from Chicago, following that we head into Sunday School, where our riders are taught about the word of God. the teacher always asks if any students have any Prayer requests and/ or blessings that they’d like to share with the class, we then sing scripture songs as a class before ending. After Sunday School is over we head back to the assembly where we fellowship and host games for the teenagers, before the Preaching. It is now 12:30 pm and we head back to our bus where we play games with the riders and sing songs before we drop them off at home and say our goodbyes for the week. we then head to Mc Donald’s to get a quick bite Before heading back to Indiana again for the Evening Service.

Night church

We leave little Village at 4pm, and arrive to the Church around 5PM since our evening service doesn’t start for another hour or so, I head to the second floor with my best friends. We get some snacks from the Church book store and just sit at a table and Catch up/ talk. I always love that part of my day, when we can all share about what happened on our Bus Routes that day and share the Blessings that we had throughout our week. It is from those conversations then and there that I see how wonderful my life is.

Nightbus Ready

After the evening service, The college girls then ride another bus back to the college while myself, as well as other bus workers ride another bus back to Chicago to drop off those kids / riders who went the extra mile and stayed for the evening service. Right before heading back to Chicago, I say goodbye to my best friend, one of the few humans crazy enough to deal with me, And once again I count the days until it’s Sunday again! The ride back to Chicago is a crazy one! many different sounds fill the air as riders struggle to find seats on the jam packed bus. Kids and workers start singing as the bus begins to pull out of the Church and make its way back to Chicago. Once in Chicago we split up into two buses and we begin doing drop offs. It is now 10;30 pm and I am finally home, Another Sunday for the books!

About Me

Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

casually sitting near the tracks attempting to get an ” instagram worthy” photo

My name is America, I am a 19 year old Aspiring photographer. I was Born and Raised in the City of Chicago. I am the oldest of 9 children to Immigrant parents.

My greatest blessing, my wonderful Family.

I like many others have gone through some hardships in life ( who doesn’t? ) Through this blog I want to give a better insight into many of the wonderful things that have happened to me thus far that have helped me have a better, more positive outlook on life and the way we choose to life it. I hope it is a help an encouragement to anyone reading it.