Saturday, May 3, 2014


Are you ever just sure you want to be alive? I know I don't want to die, I don't want to kill myself; I just don't know if I want to live. Maybe I don't know how to. I mean, I have a lot to live for, I have a lot I want to do and I have a ton of people I care about. I feel anger at times, I feel sad some days, I feel happy and euphoric others. Yet, I can't shake this feeling, even though I want to.

Apathy must truly be the strongest feeling I'm capable of feeling. When I'm angry I can feel sad simultaneously or when I'm happy I can easily feel love for someone. Pain can blend with any of those emotions, oddly enough. But somehow apathy can devoid my heart and mind of anything else. It devours my personality, my mood, my emotions and it spits out a shell.

Even typing words into my computer today brings me no pleasure. I wouldn't call it writers block, I have the ability to write, I know what I want to put down. I just can't do more than a few sentences or paragraphs before losing interest or jumping into bed to recuperate.

Some people would probably be glad to feel nothing, they would be happy to get a break. But I can remember several extremely sad and depressing times in my life that were more fascinating and invigorating than this. I remember driving myself home after breaking up with my first girlfriend. I remember crying in the car for about 10 miles and I can think of that as a happy memory compared to today.

Maybe something needs to break, maybe I need to change myself again. In New York I had about 3-7 different personalities that I could use depending on my environment, the person I was talking to and the mood of the day. Today I feel that I've become one person, one sulking, depressing, complaining son of a bitch.

How I miss the failures, the dramas and stress of my old life. I've grown so much through those failures, I've developed so much through all the stress and anxiety. People look back at failures and regrets like they're a negative, are you kidding? They need to be celebrated and praised. Failures don't define you, maybe that's true, but they sure as hell change and mold you.

Think about it, whatever your failure is, it changes you in some way. If you drink too much and get a hangover you learn to control yourself. If you get into a bad relationship and decide you never want that again, it changes your preferences. If you spend too much money next time you'll change your habits. You could say this is only changing your methods but like it or not it is changing the way you think and act, it is creating you.

Perhaps, the label is the mistake. Maybe we shouldn't call it a failure, it isn't really a regret if you've learned from it. Although I feel I would take back some things if I could help it, perhaps it is better that I can't. Whoever I need to be tomorrow is something I've built since the day I was born. Through failure, success, death and life. I have grown, that's something I don't ever want to stop. If that means falling on my face every couple of steps, so be it.

Friday, May 2, 2014

The First Flight

My name is Anna, age 21, a veteran Phoenix. I've spent three years in battle, three years narrowly avoiding death and fighting for what is right. Three years is considered a long time to most of my colleagues, most recruits die within the first six months, many of them in their first conflict. My father lasted four years, my brother just less than five. I coughed up a bit of a chuckle, I guess we're stubborn.

I still remember my father's strong back, his rugged face and full mustache. He always had cigarettes with him, even if he went weeks without smoking. To this day the smell still calms me down and makes me feel at home. Guess that's how I picked up the habit. People say it makes your body slow down, makes you weaker but I had bigger concerns. Smoke wasn't going to kill me, if my lungs we going to collapse it would be a bullet or dagger that did the trick.

Most of my childhood I spent with my brothers, Evan and Adam. Evan was quiet and respectful. If mom or dad asked something of him, he did it. No questions asked. I always admired his resolve and stoic personality. He was 16 when our father left. He spoke through action, spending most of his time making sure we would be alright and that Adam knew how to pick up where he would leave off. The day he turned 18 he left to join the Phoenix revolution. Mother begged him not to, Adam took her side but I was so proud of him for fighting for what he thought was right.

Adam was 14 when father left. He handled it a lot worse than any of us, save my mother. I would come into his room every once in awhile to see what he was up. More often than not I would find him in a ball, crying or sleeping, sometimes both. It was around the time my mother fell ill with tuberculous that Adam became the man of the house. He was no fighter, he didn't care about the cause, all he cared about was his family. I could understand his feelings but I couldn't help but feel a bit disgusted with him at times. I thought he was a coward.

I was three years younger than Adam, 11 when my father left. I was the youngest child and the only daughter. Around the time I turned 17 my mother passed away. It affected me less than I would have liked, there were times I would have liked to cry or mourn her but it never felt that way. Instead I felt an overwhelming rage building inside me. My mother could have been saved, she should have been cured but at the end of the day people are more interested in money than lives. In this country you either die in battle or die of exposure. I was going down kicking and screaming.

As a child, teenager, even now as a young adult I never asked for much. Whatever I wanted I fought for, I got it myself. If I needed clothes I would make them or pick up a job to buy them. If I was hungry I went hunting. If I was sick I would ignore it and carry on as if everything was normal. Money was scarce in my town, everyone was fighting just to survive.

Survival is something any creature can do, I wanted to see my people thrive. The day I turned 18 I decided to follow in Evan's footsteps and join the cause. I pleaded with Adam to come with me but he had become something I couldn't even recognize. He spent his days working, drinking, depressed and trapped in the past. As far as I could tell he was already dead, a ghost. No ambition, no reason to be alive, just haunting the house with nothing left but regrets.

I knew the road ahead of me was going to be hard but I wasn't scared, I was excited. We can't continue like this any longer, the people know it, the government knows it and those pulling the strings couldn't care less. I will purge the evil from these lands. I will call this land my country once again. I am not the voice of the people, I am not the hand of justice: I am the blade of the forgotten.