Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Just Checkin In

Hi everyone,
I just wanted to check in today with you all. I have been feeling okay, not good and not terrible. So in a way, that's good.
I'm excited and nervous for my end of chemo party this weekend. So many people are coming, more than I would like to have in one place. But it's all because they care. My one friend, was supposed to be at the beach during the party, but he said he's going to try and make it back. No promises, but the fact that he's even trying, means more than you can imagine. This shows that I really do have friends, even during tough times. And to me, that means the world.

Lately, I've been thinking about getting a job doing something I love to do. And I think that thing is becoming a freelance writer or something along those lines.

And lastly, I still haven't decided on my Make A Wish. Any ideas at all would be helpful. My top choices are Olympics in Rio or Olympic training camp for the men's basketball team or a book tour, all over the country. Please help me!

You are braver than you believer, stronger than you seem and smarter than you think.
                                  -Winnie the Pooh

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Once In A Lifetime

Yesterday I lived out the expression once-in-a-lifetime experience. My god-sister was getting married in a Ghanaian engagement ceremony.

In Ghanaian culture, when two people become married, not only do they become one, but so do their entire families.

The bride’s family and Okeyame or spokesperson begins sitting, looking toward the entrance. The immediate family or elders sits in the front row, in order to receive the gifts from the groom’s family. The groom’s family makes their way to the entrance, stating the reason of their presence.

The bride’s spokesperson signals for the groom’s family to begin knocking. They begin yelling, “Agoo!”
To which we responded, “Amee!” This was repeated two more times.

The groom’s family was then greeted and led to their seats by the bride’s family. They were then given water from the bride’s family as a comfort for their long travels and the heat.

Before the spokespersons introduced themselves, and gave us a pronounceable name to refer to them as, an opening prayer was said.
Following the prayer,the groom’s family speaks of their mission, leaving the parents of the bride to either except or deny their betrothal. The ceremony begins when the bride’s elders grant permission.
Usually, the bride’s spokesperson would give a list to the groom’s family according to tradition. But this had been done ahead of time, so as not to lose the bride’s interest.

The groom’s spokesperson present the ring, bible, hymn book and drinks, lots of them, to the bride’s spokesperson. This is the way of asking for the bride’s hand in marriage. After this, jewelry, clothes and anything else is presented from the groom’s family.

In thanksgiving for raising a wonderful and beautiful daughter, the parents of the bride are then given gifts. In Ghanaian tradition, a women is priceless. No price can be put on them, but the groom’s family tried their hardest to show their appreciation to the whole family. This includes the brothers or cousins, whom help the groom to fulfill his duties on the day of the ceremony and prior to.

At last, the groom’s family requests to see the bride. The bride’s family sends out a decoy, usually a sister or bridesmaid. The groom’s family begins calling out, “No! No! We want our real bride!” In order to receive the real bride, the groom’s family turned over an envelope of money.

The next decoy is brought out, and again the groom’s family began calling and yelling out. The decoy is then walked back to the room, where the real bride awaits. The groom’s family threatened to leave, if the next girl was not the bride. So to seal the deal, they handed over another envelope of money.
As the music began, people were getting antsy and hungry, specifically my sister. But as the bridal party danced their way in, everyone was on their feet, clapping and cheering. They greeted the groom’s family, and the bride was seated on with groom’s family.

After everyone was settled, the groom was brought in, dancing in a circle with 
his family and friends, before being introduced to the bride’s family.
Approval must be granted from the bride’s elders, before the bride and groom can sit together on their love seat. The priest blesses the couple, bible, hymn book and ring, uniting the couple as husband and wife.
A closing prayer was said before the closing song of thanksgiving. Smiles were everywhere, as in the eyes of Ghanaian's, they were married.

The reception was fun, good music, different clothes, and interesting food. I never thought that people from Africa, listened to modern pop music, but they do, and even know all the words. The food was a different story, the only foods there I had heard of were, potato salad and rolls. The other stuff tasted very different than a burger or slice of pizza. I did try goat stew, it wasn't bad at all. My sister enjoyed the rolls and my brother enjoyed the salad. And the cake, all of us enjoyed that.

The thing that was the most strange was the attire. The only way I can describe it, is as abstract. Many bright colors decorated the pavilion. My first thought was why would you ever where that in public. But the outfits grew on me, as I saw the many different designs. There was something for everybody.


If you ever get the chance to experience something like that, I’d take the opportunity. Just those 4 and half hours helped me broaden my horizons. And for those who know me, you know how closed off I am from the rest of the world.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Friendships

Earlier today I received a text from an old friend who I haven't seen since 9th grade. It was really nice to have someone text me out the blue not to talk about how I'm feeling. We used to go to the movies and sweet frog together. Buy now I'm luck if I see her three times a year. But when I saw her text it made me smile, like really smile😊😊😊😊 

This evening I texted my friend from my old school, just to say hi. We ended up having an hour and half long convo. We joked around a lot and I was very sarcastic. And he stayed on his phone 15 extra minutes even after he said he was going to bed. I told I was as well. But he felt like it was his fault, so he stayed up awhile longer worrying about me. 

I could never take these kinds of friends for granted, the ones where when you haven't seen them in awhile and you automatically click and the ones who will stay up after a day of work, soccer and mowing the lawn just to make sure you're okay.

You guys know who you're, but I just want to thank you for being there when I need you the most. I hope you're in my lives for a very longtime. 

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Living Out my Dream

As the majority of you know, the women's world cup ended Sunday night with the final, between the United States and Japan, a rematch of 2011. But this time history was not repeating itself. I wrote an article about the game and have decided to share it with you all. Be honest in what you think. Every writer knows that not everyone will enjoy or agree with their piece.

The 15er’s
By: Kayla Brown
The U.S. women’s national team made history in 1999, with a win over China in penalty kicks. Brandy Chastain had the 5th, and winning kick. Ripping of her jersey after the made kick, is still making an impact today. She made it officially okay for girls to go around in just their sports bras. But the whole team gave all the young girls watching the game a sense of courage and belief that they could be there one day. But the US hasn't been able to win the World Cup since then, a 16 year drought definitely must hurt.
Why change what works? Coach Jill Ellis didn't touch the line-up from the last 3 games, which meant no starting for Abby Wambach in her last professional match. But on her 30th birthday, that meant a start for Megan Rapinoe.
Three minutes into the game, a goal right though the opening in the defense gave Carli Lloyd the first goal of the game, and left Japan trailing for the first time in this World Cup. Nobody could have predicted a goal like that this early in the game.
Tobin Heath got passed two Japan defenders before being taken down, just outside of the box. A free kick from Lauren Holiday, landed right on Julie Johnston’s right leg. She flicked it back to the front of the goal where Carli Lloyd was running in to work on her hat trick, leaving the reigning world champs stunned.
A third goal was scored by Lauren Holiday on a cross that was miss cleared by the Japanese defender, giving the US a 3-1 lead over Japan.
Talk about a hat trick. Carli Lloyd, yet again, put the ball in the back of the net, becoming the 2nd women to score 3 girls in the final. Using veteran skills, she was aware that the Japan goalie was way off her line. From a step behind the mid-field line, she blasted the ball, catching the goalie off-guard and scoring. It almost appeared as if she was going to get a hat trick plus one, when she headed the ball just wide of the goal, a few minutes later.

For those hoping for a shutout, Ogimi, a Japan forward, ruined your dreams. She made the score 4-1 in about the 27th minute. About three minutes later, it looked as if Japan was going to tighten the score a little more. But the defenders were there, ready to do their job and keep the ball out of the goal.
At halftime the score stood as the highest score in a World Cup final.
An own goal off the head of breakout star defender, Julie Johnston, in the 52nd minute gave Japan their 2nd goal of the game. Will it be their last?
The United States is definitely not done yet. In the 54th minute, a cross on a corner bobbled its way through the box and landed right on Morgan Brian’s foot. She slid it right in front of the goal for Tobin Heath, giving the youngest player on the US team, an assist.
At the 79th minute, the crowd was deafening as Abby Wambach entered the game for Tobin Heath. The team is so in-sync that when Abby arrived on the field, Carli Lloyd gave her the respected captain band. The respect for each other is mind-blowing.
Christie Rampone, at age 40, became the oldest women to ever play in a World Cup in the 86th minute. Does she have a goal in her? Or does Carli Lloyd have another one up her sleeve?

The final score of 5-2 held and the 16 year drought came to an end for the US women’s national team. A re-match of the 2011 final has ended entirely different. Three World Cup wins for the US, has just made them the most successful country in women’s World Cup history.

I hope you enjoyed the article.
I have some questions to ask. 
What should one do for their 16th birthday? 
Keep in mind, I hate being the center of attention unless it involves basketball.

What is your favorite song? Mine are Want to Want My by Jason Derulo and Fun by Chris Brown and Pitbull. My favorite artist, by far, is Jason Derulo. He's a triple threat, he can sing, dance, and he's cute. What's not to love?

Oh I can't forget. I want to wish a happy birthday to my dad. I miss the times when we would shoot hoops at the park or play two on two. I know we fight and argue a lot. But I love you, so much! Happy birthday!

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Venting Is Sometimes Better Than An Apple A Day

I want to thank all of you for reading my blog. It really means a lot to me. On here, I feel as though I can be honest, which is a lot more than I can say for the real world. Don't get me wrong, I have some really close friends who I can tell anything, plus my mom, my little sister and my grandma. But I also I have friends who weren't ever really there for me during my treatment and still aren't here for me now.

I understand that it was probably hard for them because you don't really realize how bad cancer is, until someone you love or are close to has it. But did they ever think of how it made me feel, having cancer and losing some of the people I thought were my best friends. Well to put it bluntly, it sucks!!!

I'm not just here to vent, I was also hoping to share a small excerpt from my newest work, a mostly true story with made up characters. Let me know what you think about.

As I caught the pass from the ref, I took a deep breath to relax myself. I dribbled twice, spun the ball, and dribbled again. I bent my knees and shot. I knew it was good from the second it left my hand. Swish! The crowd went wild as soon as the ball hit the net, but I focused on tuning out all the noise as the ref passed me the ball. I did my dribble routine again, took a deep breath, and shot. The ball bounced around the rim for what felt like hours, before falling through the net. I looked at the scoreboard which showed 12.1 seconds left, with my team up by 1, 49-48. 

That's all for now, you'll have to wait until I'm a bestseller to read the rest.
Feel free to comment on this paragraph, I love creative criticism especially from people other than my family.

I'm not sure if I explained why I started blogging in the first place. If I didn't, now is as good as ever. I started a day or two after I was diagnosed with Mortimer Dorkus(Hodgkin's Lymphoma) because I don't know how to tell people how I feel from a personal stance. Trust me, I am great at telling people how much I hate them or anything like that. Actually I'm very blunt when it comes to that stuff. But I can't really let people inside of my heart and brain, I've never been able to do that. But it's gotten worse lately, which makes sense. I feel better when I can write or type it. And I know you guys want to hear it, because you take the time to come on and read it, whereas people ask how i'm doing because they feel like they have to. But I can tell the majority of them don't really care.

Lastly, I hope all of you have heard the song "Fight Song" by Rachel Platten. The first time I heard this was in the car with my mom and siblings on the way to my brother's basketball practice. They all knew the words, and I was confused because I thought it was the first time playing on the radio. But the song left a lasting impression on me, I feel as though the song was written for me and I listen to at least once a day. I recommend this to anyway going through a tough time, plus it has a catchy tune. If you haven't heard it yet, here's your chance.

That's all for today. 
"Whether you think you can or you think you can't, you're right."