Light at the End

Posted: August 12, 2014 in Life
Tags: ,

It’s funny…the various stages of dreaming that we go through as people. I think what shapes us is how long we manage to hold onto our dreams or how we mold them along the way.

When I was 13, I knew then that I wanted to help people and have an impact on the world. To me at the time, that meant occupations like a doctor (before I knew I had an aversion to blood) or a lawyer (before I knew how time consuming and financially depressing it was to go through law school, successfully). My mother told me I could be whatever I wanted – as long as I worked hard.

Either way, I knew that meant I would have to excel in middle school…high school… in order to get a scholarship. So I did. And somehow in high school -probably around the second semester of my Freshman year – my dreams started to dim a bit when financial reality set in. So I started my first job. Then my second in Junior year.

During those years, while I started to piece together the ideas of a “budget” and how much it actually cost to live in the “real” world… I didn’t exactly grasp the concept of a savings account yet – so I spent my money on band t-shirts, CDs, a stereo, DVDs, eating out with friends, going to the movies…you get the idea. I became independent in a way; I didn’t have to feel guilty asking my (single parent) mother for money so I could hang out with my friends – this is something I could do for myself.

So I excelled in high school while working two jobs. These were stepping stones on the path to achieving my dreams that were becoming more out of focus at this time. The good news is: I test extremely well. I was awarded a few scholarships to cover tuition for college – which was always on the future path for me.

Higher education has evolved in a way where it’s become more difficult to attain year after year. It used to be enough to work hard in school and get good grades; now you need to play a sport, volunteer, participate in a club, work part time, overcome diversity, AND get good grades. By the end of high school, I had decided to become a different kind of doctor – Forensic Psychologist.

So I double majored in Psychology and Criminal Justice in college after I moved out. I worked 40-50 hours a week depending on how many jobs I had, even had a bit of a social life while getting good grades. Transitioned to part time school for a semester when I had back surgery and still graduated in 4.5 years.

After receiving my degree, I moved to Arizona to take a break (aka just work full time). There were several pros to moving here – high up on the list was warmer weather and more access to one of my greatest loves: live music.

The first six months were a rough transition to say the least: sick, moved twice, car broke down, missing home… but you learn a lot on your own. I had become accustomed to my financial reality by this time and going to get my doctorate seemed less and less possible.

I was burnt out. And I started to think about what was important to me; the answer was clear – happiness. I wanted to be in love with my life. That began with music – I went to every show I could within a 150 mile radius my first year in Arizona. Yes, I spent money I didn’t have and probably took off more time at work than I should have.

The first two years I moved here have been the best of my life. I’ve been so many places and seen so many bands; met people through music I’ve known for years. These people – my friends – are an integral part of my life and help build a strong foundation for wherever I want to go next.

It’s hard to imagine in a snap shot – how our dreams go from “doctor” to debt-free.

HOW DID I GET HERE?

Dreams evolve at a different degree for different people.

I’m not where I thought I would be.
I’m not sure where I want to go half the time.

But I want to look back and say with confidence that I did what was best for me at the time. And that I learned a lot. And that I enjoyed all the mistakes I made along the way.

Because I think that light at the end of the tunnel that’s getting brighter every day…is my dream. I’m just not sure what shape it’ll take by the time I get there.

Bottom

Posted: July 17, 2014 in Uncategorized

What she needed more than anything
Was to not need him
She was starting to fall again
This time it might be better
To let her hit the floor

So terrified to make a move
Her feet are burned into the ground
And she’s going nowhere fast

Anxiety with one prescription
Destructive doses provided
And she is hooked
Needle cemented into her vein
No safe way to detach, relapse
An unforgettable high
An unforgiving high

The screaming could penetrate his armor
Hundreds of miles away
He’ll crumble in need around her
Falling faster than before
Just let him hit the floor
There’s nowhere left for them to go

But up

I Would

Posted: July 16, 2014 in Poetry
Tags: , , , , ,

I would choose you
In fact, I think I already did
You asked me why
And made me use my words to respond out loud
Forced me to rip my words off this paper written with invisible ink
And I shouted them in our quiet space after hours

You asked me why
And you held your breath while you waited for me to answer…

And then you listened
And didn’t forget

You didn’t know you were changing me
And I didn’t know it (then) either
But here I am, years later
Confining my words to paper
With a different kind of ink

You taught me better than this

In the shadow of my love for you, I hide
Secretly hoping you’ll find me here
Because you still wonder why
And you still want the answers
And you’re willing to listen

Always

I looked up and expected to see stars
Arranged in the shape of your face
an arrow pointing North telling me
Exactly which direction to go tonight

But these nights I lose my grasp
On our pretend happy ending
It’s darker than I wanted it to be
Much too dark to find my way

I pushed it down below, down below
These melodies pull thoughts top side
And I’m surrounded here, suffocated here
And I looked up and expected to see stars…

But these nights I lose my grasp
On our pretend happy ending
It’s darker than I wanted it to be
Much too dark to find my way

Looking for light at the wrong time tonight
It’s too dark to find my way (2x)

And these nights I lose my grasp
On everything we should have been
Everything we could have been
Everything we ARE

Easier to forgive
But how do you forget yourself
Stationary styles allows too much
Time for re-evaluation

Keep moving
Don’t decorate into permanence
It’s too hard to tear it all down

//Blank walls all around me
The color sucked dry
Don’t get too comfortable, dear
We only have tonight//

Not so easy to forgive
When you can’t forget yourself
Don’t repeat the same mistakes
Lesson learned, I won’t forget if I…

Keep moving
Don’t nail anything down
It’s too hard to rip it all out

//Blank walls all around me
The color sucked dry
Don’t get too comfortable, dear
We only have tonight//

The color bleeds out of my skin
Need pressure
To hold myself together
You paint murals with what I leave behind
But I won’t be there to see it

*because I’m surrounded by*

//Blank walls all around me
The color sucked dry
Don’t get too comfortable, dear
We only have tonight//

…we never had tonight

[2.21.14 | Vegas]

Haley James

Dioxide

Posted: October 17, 2013 in Uncategorized

Consumed again
I almost welcome
this suffocating
embrace

We breathe better
When we share
The same oxygen
Tonight

The stars are bright
…again
But don’t they
Explode with light
Before they die?

Just a few notes and I am gone
Gone to another space
So far from this place
I no longer breathe oxygen

I breathe melodies
So hauntingly sweet
That bring me to my knees
I am yours this time

Stuck in this trance
And my breath catches
On those guitar strums
My heart beats to the bass drum and…

I breathe melodies
So hauntingly sweet
That bring me to my knees
I am yours tonight

My blood races
Through my veins
The climax approaches
My skin tingles and…

I no longer breathe oxygen
Just sweet melodies
Down on my knees
Take me for the night

I no longer breathe oxygen
Just sweet melodies
Down on my knees
Take me for the night