Friday, December 3, 2010

Letter to God

Dear God,

God, I don't know if You really notice me, but I'm one of those who, for some reason or another, leave and then come back again when problems arise. I don't know how You could put up with that, but everytime I come running back, Your arms are always spread, ready to take me into Your arms. It's great to know that You're always there to pick me up and embrace me just when I need to be embraced. I feel guilty, though. I feel bad that I'm just using You as a safety net, as just a shoulder to cry on and nothing more. But, God, I'm trying my hardest to change that. That's why I want to be strong.

I want to be strong, God, for my family. I study in a university that is some hours away from home. I always feel homesick no matter how many times I've come and gone. It always feels like the first day I came into the dormitory - I think I cried myself to sleep that time. There's just this heart-wrenching feeling I can't get rid of. That's how much I love my family, God, and I really want to be strong for them. It's not that I want to stop loving them, I just want to really realize deep inside that I'm doing this for them... That I have to be separated from them for a while so we could enjoy a better life someday. I go home every weekend, God, but sometimes I think time spent with them is not enough, especially now that my mom is in another country. I just want to be with them every second of the day, God. I want to know that they're nearby, that I could embrace them anytime I could, that I could always hear their voices, see them... But, God, sometimes things have to be given up so that life could get better.

Which brings me, God, to this point: I'm not entirely confident that I can survive this semester. There's just so much pressure, God - more than I could use. I'm a laid-back person but I've been a University Scholar for three semesters. God, I don't want to give that up. You know how I've been way back then: the achiever, the one with the highest grades, the one at the top, the smartest in the class. But when I came into the university, God, I realized how small I really was. I'm so afraid of failure, God. I don't ever want to be a failure. I survived the last three semesters but... I don't want to have to put everybody down, which includes my family and my friends. I feel like so much is expected. Even though they assure me that I don't have to ace every subject, I know, I really know that they'll be really disappointed if I get a 3 or a 5.

And that's exactly why I need Your help, God. I don't know how I can finish all my requirements. I've never been much of a sociable person. I don't know why I ever took up Journalism since it involves a lot of interviews and running around. I'm not interested in politics and reading academic books. I don't know how to write a term paper properly - an essay even. I have no idea how I'm going to do this. I don't want to drop a subject, God...

I know there are other students who have heavier loads than I do. But I get the feeling that they're faring better than I am. They're probably not worrying about anything. But here I am, fretting about the coming days. I just don't know... I don't think I'm ready, God.

Maybe I have lost some of my faith in Your power. Somehow, I know that I can do this with Your help, but sometimes I forget. I often forget, and this makes me sad. Increasingly sad.

When I see my dad, I don't know how he can trust You so much. He practically gave everything He has to You. Sometimes he doesn't even have enough time for us, and I always have to convince myself that it's okay, it's alright, but most of the time I feel like hating him for it. But I love my dad so, so much. I just don't know how he could do that for You. I don't know how He could entrust our family's savings to You. I don't know how we ever get by...

So, God, I want to ask You again (I know we've had these conversations countless times but...) for Your help. Please help me do this. I really, really want to pass. I'm so afraid of making mistakes, God, even if I know that it's part of our humanity to err. Failure scares me. Saying this, I know I'm not the most faithful child You'll ever have. I'm not always good. I can't devote myself like others are doing. There are so many things I can't do, so many things I can't be. But, God, please help me to change this. Please help me to recognize that You are always in control. No matter what happens, God, You will be there. You've made that promise before, and it stayed true. Please help me to remember that failure is okay as long as I get back up, that You are a shoulder to cry on, that You are the friend who will stick with me no matter what, that Your arms are always open for the lost. Please help me to remember this, and more. But most of all, please help to know that no matter what happens, I will always be Your child and You will always be my Father.

God, please hold my hand.

Your child.

Book Review - Graceling by Kristin Cashore

Rating: 8/10

Katsa, niece of King Randa, is Graced with killing. She could wield any weapon effectively - and even kill a man with her bare hands. For many years her uncle had her under his control, doing his dirty work. But when she meets the Lienid Prince Po, Katsa has no idea of how her life is about to change.

I liked the novel very much. I can feel the characters "grow" with every passing chapter; they're also very interesting, especially Bitterblue who is forever mysterious (in this novel, at least). But, in my opinion, it could have been better. There are some things in it that could be altered a little. It's a satisfying novel, but I don't see it being turned into a movie (unlike A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray which I could imagine vividly). Somehow, it's hard to imagine Graceling as a film...

As for the themes discussed in the story, it's pretty obvious that Kristin Cashore is talking "feminism" here. There are about a hundred clues throughout the book. I like her approach.

For a debut novel, Graceling is amazing. :)