Saturday, December 22, 2012

Coming To An End

Oh this is a little funny being that today was supposed to be the end of the world. But, sadly, this isn't about the world coming to an end. This is about my high school career coming to a fast halt. Although right now I can't wait to get out for the break, it does make me sad that next year I won't be at this school. Next year I'll be off doing something totally different and I don't even know what it will be now. I'll be at some college I have yet to choose, and I'll be trying to make new friends. This is a huge step, and I don't know if I'm ready to take it.

Within the next year I will have my last jazz competitions, prom, and spring break in high school. My brother will be going off into the marines, I'll play my last softball game, and I'll have to leave my family and boyfriend behind as I go off to college. Right now, I don't know how I'm going to do so. I see my family every day; how am I going to go months without seeing them? I only see my boyfriend two or three times a week, and I hate it. How am I going to go months without seeing him too? I'll also have to face the freshman fifteen. And to be completely honestly, that scares the crap out of me.

With all these things I'm going to hate, there has to be some stuff to look forward to. Hmm.. Making new friends isn't necessarily my strong suit, but it'll be nice being able to start over. The college football and basketball will be crazy fun! And, in a way I'll be closer to my family in Illinois depending on what college I choose. With the freshman fifteen, I guess that will be more of a reason for me to keep up on working out.
Out of all the good and bad things about going to college, the hardest thing for me will be leaving everyone I've known my whole life. It's hard realizing that once we graduate, the people we've gone to school with for twelve years will be mere strangers a year from now. It's sad, really. Growing up stinks :(

Friday, December 21, 2012


I should clarify on my previous post about parents. In no way shape or form am I saying that I'm upset with my parents for not telling me earlier. Knowing how upset I initially was at age fifteen, I can't begin to think about how angry I would be if they told me earlier than that. Also, I'm not mad at all that I didn't grow up with Kelly. I know how extremely lucky I am to have Rich. I know that he loves me, and he knows that I love him.

If I didn't have him in my life, I honestly wouldn't be here right now. Six or seven years ago (I think) he was taking out docks, and I was just lying on the dock, wrapped in my moms black sweatshirt. I was extremely tired so I slowly began to fall asleep. Now looking back, I realize that that was a very bad idea. I don't think my parents realized that I fell asleep until I rolled over a landed in the water. At that time I didn't know how to swim and plus it didn't help that I was wrapped up in a sweatshirt. The water was freezing, and I was fighting to get to the surface. My dad jumped in the water and pulled me out, essentially saving my life.

He did save my life, but that's not the only reason why I'm so lucky to have him. He has provided me with things that I wouldn't have without him. He has taught me so much. I realize how if I had grown up with different father, I would be totally different. If my mom would've raised me on her own, she wouldn't be as happy as she is today. That's the most important thing to me. If my mom would've tried raising me on her own without Rich, I don't think she would be very happy. Seeing how happy Rich makes my mom warms my heart.

I love both of them so much. All I wanted to get at with this post is that I'm grateful for both of my parents. Although it wasn't ideal to not know that I had two sisters all my life and that I went to school with them, I understand why it had to be this way.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

No Point.

Brace yourself. This next post is going to be extremely catty and dramatic. I apologize in advance.

Most of you know that bad is an extremely important aspect to my life, so I take it pretty seriously. I practice as often as possible, and I try my hardest in rehearsal. Over my high school career, band has become more than a class. Band has become my life, my love, and my passion. I'm very tough on myself, and I expect the best. Although this is somewhat a good thing, it's not always the best. I expect so much from myself that when I mess up, I put myself down to the point of tears. But that's just me. How can I care so much while others don't seem to care at all?

I take my trumpet home almost every day. Even days when I could easily say I have no time to practice, I make time. Other people have plenty of time, yet they don't take it home. I worked my butt off for my spot. I wasn't always at the level I'm at now. I went from fifth chair in jazz, to second chair, and finally got first chair. I went from being fifth chair in concert band to being fourth, to first two years in a row. That doesn't just happen over night. I stepped it up. You should too.

I understand that this is from my perspective and that my perspective will differ among many of you. Because I'm in band, and I want to sound good, I'm very biased. But take this into consideration. You're in a sport ,say basketball, and you are trying your hardest because you care. You look over at one of your teammates and they are just messing around. They're obviously not trying to get better, and that ticks you off. Why does that tick you off? Because you care. That's the point. There's no difference between basketball, dance, or band. When you're involved in something, you need to try and put forth effort, or you're just letting others down who love what they're doing. Do you want to be that kid who lets the rest of the band down? Oh wait, you don't care.

Soundtrack of My Life

I’m writing this for my college comp class, and I’m really trying my hardest to find the write songs that fit these situations. My goal in writing this paper is to sound like me and let my readers better understand my life and why I do the things I do. This is probably going to be a little too personal and a bit cheesy, but oh well. “This Is Me” by Demi Lovato explains how I feel now about my life. “This is real, this is me. I’m exactly who I’m supposed to be now. I’m gonna let the light shine on me.”

DC Trip
My summer after my freshman year I went on a trip to Washington DC, New York City, Rehoboth Beach, Gettysburg, PA, and Philadelphia. It was probably one of the longest trips of my life. There was constant movement, I didn’t sleep once on the bus, I got seasick on the ferry, and I went to like twelve memorials in a three day period. The one thing that I always remember when I think about this trip is going across the bridge to get to New York City, and the song that was playing in the background was “Empire State of Mind” by Jay-Z and Alicia Keys. It was at the part in the song where they’re singing, “Now you’re in New York. These streets will make you feel brand new. Big lights will inspire you. Let’s hear it for New York, New York, New York.” Imagine it, you’re going across the bridge, and you look down into the water. The waves rolling while you’re getting closer and closer to the city. It’s kind of dark out so you can see the lights of the city. All of this is happening while the song is playing. It simply takes your breath away. This was an absolutely amazing moment; it was so surreal. It was like a scene taken straight out of a movie.

If I had to recommend one thing to any younger girl, cheerleading would be it. Cheerleading changed my life and really let me grow into who I really am. I started cheering my sophomore year, and I really wished I would’ve started it earlier. The transition from being a big dog in eighth grade to being a mediocre child had a tremendous impact on me. I went from being loud and somewhat obnoxious to really quiet. I didn’t quite know who I was. But cheerleading changed all of that for me. I opened up and made new friends that I never would’ve made. Because of cheerleading, I learned who my biological father was and that I had two sisters. My passion for cheering is huge, and that song that represents it is “Party Rock Anthem” by LMFAO. Our homecoming routine my junior year was based on this song, so what better song to use than this one?

Tennessee Mission’s Trip
This past summer I went to Tennessee on a mission’s trip with a church group I had never met before that. You could probably imagine how nervous I was. Opening up to people has never really been a strong suit for me. And to add to it, I had to sit on a bus with all these people for eighteen hours. EIGHTEEN WHOLE HOURS. It was definitely worth it though. For the first couple of days we did mission work that blew my mind. We helped in a group home for people recouping from drug/alcohol addiction and being homeless the first day. The days following, we worked at food shelves, packing clothes for the homeless, and spreading the love of God. Needless to say, it was a life changing experience. There’s one night that sticks out when I think about this trip. It was the first night of worship, and the most amazing worship service I had ever seen. The pastor asked people to come forward, and I did what he asked. The band continued to play as I sat on my knees praying. I then felt a hand on my shoulder, and it was someone that I had never met before in my life. This lady prayed over me and said things that I had never told anyone. I was astonished, and I just broke down. I sat there and cried, not knowing what to do. After she stopped praying over me, I just sat there and continued to pray. As I sat there, I opened my heart up. I let go of all the bad emotions I had been feeling, and, believe it or not, I was instantly happier. The song playing in the background was “Your Love Never Fails” played by Chris Martin. Whenever I’m feeling iffy about anything, I listen to this song and remind myself that God would never put anything in my way if I couldn’t handle it. If I hadn’t gone on this trip, I honestly have no idea what I would be doing now. I thank God everyday for pushing me to go on this trip.

Believe me, I understand that I talk about the babies in my family a lot, but can you blame me? These children are the loves of my life. “With Arms Wide Open” by Creed is a perfect song to explain this. Although I’m not their mother, my love for these kids doesn’t change. Being that the Connecticut shooting just happened, I’ve realized how painful it would be if I ever lost one of them. Responsibility is a key trait I learned to have early since I knew I would be watching the kids a lot. I would do absolutely anything for any one of the kids. To specify on the song choice, the chorus is the main part that I want to focus on. “With arms wide open. Under the sunlight. Welcome to this place; I’ll show you everything.”

Monday, December 17, 2012

Bucket List

This is probably the one of the few times that I will write about one of the choices Mrs. Witt gives us, because I like going on my own and talking about what I want to talk about. I chose to write about this because I love bucket lists; I think it's interesting reading about what others want to do before they die, and it gives me the feeling that I can do anything. I already have one started on my Tumblr, so I'll paste that on here and cross off the ones that are already done. :) So, here's my bucket list:

  1. Finish High School
  2. Go to college
  3. Get married
  4. Have the wedding of my dreams
  5. Get my wedding dress from Kleinfeld's in NYC
  6. Sky dive
  7. Be happy with who I've grown to be
  8. Have the body I want
  9. Go on a mission's trip
  10. Travel the world
  11. Go to Victoria Fall's with the one I love
  12. Have children
  13. Get a tattoo
  14. Jump off a waterfall like in the movies
  15. Be remembered for something great
  16. Witness a miracle
  17. Scuba dive
  18. Bungee jump
  19. Witness a flash mob first hand or be in one
  20. See the Northern Lights
  21. Learn how to play a new instrument
  22. Get my industrial pierced
  23. Swim with dolphins 
  24. Watch a meteor shower
My list is continually growing, but I'm constantly trying to find opportunities to cross things off. 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

One-On-One Learning

I have no idea how much we've talked about this in school, but I'm going to talk about it again. Why do we have computers if we're not allowed to go on half the sites because they're in the "general", "forum", or "teacher-safe" categories. When we go to college, we're going to be thrown into an totally different environment where we have the freedom to roam the internet whenever we please. We're not going to have the practice or know how to control ourselves from going to other sites. We're going to be little guppies thrown into a tank full of sharks.

First off, being blocked from sites because they're categorized as general? This should not be allowed. Our high school students are between the ages of fourteen and eighteen. We are being treated like adolescent children by blocking us from those sites. If you're a student on your school computer, go to Google and type in squid. Click enter. Look at that. A blue page pops up saying, "Sorry, squid is an unacceptable search." What.

Second. Referring back to Google, you know what drives me nuts? How if you search something in Google images, half the pictures are blocked. How are we supposed to find good pictures for presentations? And this goes back to just regular Google Search. Half of these sites are blocked, so how are we supposed to research if these sites are blocked? Less than half the student body has passwords to college sites or sites like Gale and Ebsco to use for research.

Lastly, and I know I've stated this plenty of times in my past and especially this year, but how are we expected to act like adults if we're still treated like children? I am a senior in high school, and sophomores and freshmen have the same privileges as me. I don't know about you, but I think there's a serious problem with this issue. We've talked about this numerous times in our college comp class, but I just want to restate this in hope that things might somewhat change for the future juniors and seniors at Okoboji High School. Juniors and seniors should have more privileges than freshmen and sophomores. I would suggest opening up more sites for juniors and seniors. Teach us how to control ourselves by allowing us to go to other sites on our own but not actually doing so. Then with this practice, we would be more ready for college.

I could probably go on and on about this issue, but I know that many of you who are reading this have already talked about this a ridiculous amount. But if one of our school board members or even one of tech guys are reading this, take this into consideration. I'm not one who normally complains about our school, but I think this is a large problem that we have, and that if we truly want to ready students for college then we need to give them more opportunities to control our "needs" to go to other sites.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

A List of Thankfulness

What I'm thankful for..:
-my awesome and all-mighty God -my amazing, yet dorky family including my witty mother, my insane father, my obnoxious brothers, my hilarious sisters, my loving grandma, and my awkward yet hysterical cousins and aunt and uncle  -my crazy best friend, actually all my friends -my boo :) -my school and everyone in it including the teachers -how ridiculously close my family is -my new car :) -wrestling AND football cheerleading -ALL the children in my family(there's a lot) -my summer job -being raised with good morals and high standards -being raised to love everything I do and try my hardest in whatever I'm doing -my dogs (even though they're extremely annoying) -the 15 years I got with my grandpa and with that how blessed I was to have such and amazing, intelligent grandfather -my country and all the soldiers who fought and died for it -the people who have jobs that nobody else wants and put up with the crap they get for it -sunrises and sunsets -having a roof over my head and food on the table -not knowing what it feels like to be cold and hungry -the first snowfall -the first day of summer -going to a school where the teachers actually care about you and get to know you on a more personal level -all the superficial items that I have in my life that a lot of people may not have -CAPPUCCINOS -summer nights -being able to rap Look At Me Now ;) -my youth group -long road trips -being raised in a small town -my uncanny ability to make people laugh or smile when they're down :) -artists and composers of music that get me through tough times -clothes and shoes -shopping -malls -make-up -EVERYTHING ELSE THAT WE HAVE THAT GOD HAS GIVEN US

Friday, November 16, 2012


Senior year is supposed to be the year where you can just slack, but I chose to stray from that tradition. My class schedule is loaded. I don't have a study hall my entire senior year. I'm taking Spanish 4, government, calculus, AP chem, college comp, physics, PE  and band. I thought it through my junior year, and I told myself that I could do this. I told myself that I'm smart; I've always had good grades. The lowest grade I've ever had on my report card is a B! But all my feelings changed this year due to one or two classes.

My class load is not only tremendous, but it is difficult. Right now, I really feel like I can't do this. I don't know why I got myself into this. In calculus, for example, I have always been good at math! ALWAYS. And now I feel inadequate, like I can't do anything. In my current math class, I feel stupid. I can't comprehend things like I used to be able to. I got the lowest score I've every gotten on a test this year. I have the lowest grade I have ever had right now, and I'm lucky that it's on a college grading scale. I work my butt off, I do my homework, I take good notes, and I pay attention in class, but none of it works. I'm want to give up, I really do. But I know if I give up, I will regret it later.

The feeling of being inadequate is probably one of the worse feelings ever. And it doesn't just apply to school. I can be related to people, too. Being in a family where you have parents or older/younger siblings that are brilliant at certain things that you can't do, is where someone would most likely feel inadequate. In a relationship or with friends, you may not feel good enough because maybe they're prettier, or smarter, or better at sports. You might feel inadequate there. I know I have plenty of times. Although a lot of people have probably felt inadequate in a family, I've gotten lucky and was born in a family where nobody feels inadequate. We are all equal and embrace each others flaws, we lift each other up when they're down, we can talk to each other about anything. I guess I've gotten lucky with that.

My family and God are the only things that are getting me through this feeling. I know I can trust both of them and go to both of them with anything. I also know that God would not have me do something that he knows I couldn't do. Because I'm taking all of these classes, that means God knows that I can do this and he will help me every step of the way. I may not do as well as I would like to do, but I'm doing the best I can and that's all that matters, right?

I can do this. 

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Forever & Always

One depressing post. That's all I'm doing. Please refrain from judging. I'm not posting this for people to feel sorry for me at all. This is my blog for my feelings. If that makes you uncomfortable, then feel free to leave. 
Forever & Always; 
A phrase commonly overused in relationships, yet couldn't be used enough in families. When you lose someone, either you remember all the good times you had with them, or you remember everything you didn't say to them that you now wish you would've. Two years ago to this day, I lost my grandpa. I remember the everything about the last two days I had with him. I'm not about to go into details about it because I'm sure I'd probably start crying here in class, but those most definitely were the hardest days of my life. I laid in the hospital bed with my grandpa until the nurses and my family told me I needed to go spend time with the rest of the family. I listened and went to the family room and sat there with them. I sat there with my family, and we all just stared blankly without saying a word. It wasn't an uncomfortable silence in the way that it was awkward, but it was uncomfortable in the way that you could tell immediately when you walked in the room that something was wrong. The next day, November 13, 2010, my grandpa took his last breath. I got to say goodbye, and I got to tell him I loved him, but I also had the unfortunate opportunity to watch him take his last breath. 
I spent the next couple days with my family, and I also didn't go to school for a week. The days after that are all a blur. I walked through them as if I was a ghost. People came to my grandma's house and said they were sorry for our loss and gave us food, but it didn't mean anything at the time, and I don't remember half the people that came over. But one thing I do remember is the opportunity I got to talk at his funeral. It was one of the hardest things I have ever done, but I doing it for my grandpa, and that made it worth it. I talked about how close we were and how much I loved him and will always love him, but I'm not sure you could understand half of what I was saying between my sobs. I had my family there with me to help me be strong and tell me I could do it and express that I'm doing something that many, many people could never fathom doing, especially for a fifteen year old. 
What I'm getting at with this whole story is to never think you that you can tell someone you love them too much. When you leave your house, tell your mom and dad you love them. Before you hang up the phone on your grandma or grandpa, tell them you love them. Text your cousin, your aunt, your uncle, or even your best friend and tell them you love them. Don't be afraid to use the words forever or always. Let them know how much they mean to you because some day, you might not get the opportunity to tell them again.

I'll love you forever, I'll miss you for always. As long as I'm living, my best friend you'll be. <3

Friday, November 2, 2012

The Cliché "About Me"

This first post is supposed to be all about and to be completely honest, I feel incredibly awkward just talking about myself. So, I guess I'll just start with my name? Madison Kae Bates. Most people call me Maddie, but a small number of people call me Madison. My mom chose this name because she thought it was special and it wasn't a very popular name, but now I know like seven other people who have the same name. My family means the world to me even though it's crazy messed up. I have a mother, a step-father, a biological father, two step brothers, and two half sisters. I don't really know my biological father, so I don't even think of him as my father. I look at my step dad like a biological dad and all my brothers and sisters as if they're full blood related. I'm a senior in high school and I am involved in band, jazz band, cheer leading (wrestling and football), key club, youth group, and many other church activities. I have a love for volunteering. I also have a Tumblr and, to be quite honest, I absolutely love blogging and I'm super excited for this! It's my favorite!