Thursday, December 13, 2012

What I've learned, 2012

740 cranes! The picture doesn't reflect mine at all, but whatever, I guess. Every crane is beautiful. Every crane feels like a little bit of hope...folding is therapeutic, in a way. I'm almost testing myself. The clock is ticking. Paper, paper, paper. We love and we live, and this is a way to go beyond myself. Origami? I've never been good at drawing, or art in general. My fingers haven't started hurting yet. I fold during class, while I study, eat, read. I do better in school now because I can work with my hands. I'm a kinetic learner: I need to feel. Sometimes I even dream of cranes. I dream that they float down in the wind. I dream that they tell me to keep going, that I am close, and that it is worth it, this project, that has taken me months, that I have doubted myself over, that I have wondered if I can do this. 100 became a goal, 200, 300. And I realized that I would not stop. Not unless my family friend's disease was cured, although what I fold for is bigger than a cure. It is bigger than a violin. I fold because cranes are a promise. One day, I will write a letter, fold it in a crane, seal it in a biodegradable bottle, and throw it out to sea. I think of all the words I haven't said... I fold. Cranes are my constant, my rock, my life vest. Because this year has been hard. Not just this school year; since January. Divorces, runaways, surgeries. Sometimes I wonder if I've made the right decisions. I guess cranes have become more than cranes. Because so many things have betrayed me this year. So many things have gone wrong. But through it all I can fold. It's like the way I practice music, except that for once I can hold something tangible.


I forget to count sometimes, just fold, surprise myself at the end. 60 more, I tell myself now, and I'll only have 200 left. My friends offer to help. Really, this is something I feel like I need to do alone. I wonder, when it comes down to crunch time--next week--what will come out of this. I wonder what it will look like when I'm done. I'm procrastinating on stringing again. I've learned so much: in awe of the kindness of people who fold me cranes and are my personal cheering section, in awe of my own strength, and in awe of my mom, who persuades me to persevere.

Thank you to all the people who have helped me with this project. It is so much more than a piece of paper-- 1000 pieces of paper-- and so much more than a gift. It's ending soon. What will I do? Who knows? I don't. When the phone rings I hope it's not bad news. I am wary of surprises. I don't believe in romance novels anymore. I watch my friends, hoping they're okay. These are all the things I have learned to do this year... When 2012 ends, I know I will have learned the good too. I do believe in miracles now. The power of dreams. When a friend is in need, I will rush to their side. I know life better. I live, I love, I dream, I hope.


  1. You are such a beautiful writer. Life is in the lessons and you're at a point in your life where you are learning about "real" life in it's glory and it's pain. Good luck you're in the 200's now xo

    1. Thank you! I think that is very true. There are the ups and downs and you learn each equally.