Sunday, September 16, 2012

Operation Smile

Orofacial clefts are birth defects that which we are familiar of as cleft lips or palate. What you don't know is, there are at least 1-2 out of 1000 children who have this condition. This condition occurs more often among Asian, Latinos and Native Americans.
What worries and saddens me is the fact that not many kids that are born with this condition undergo corrective surgery because of the absence of funds and because of poor medical availability.

These kids are taunted for being different, they have to undergo speech therapy, their parents are also required to undergo counselling so that they would better understand the needs of their children. It's tough to have to explain to their children as to why they look different and why they aren't normal like others.

I've actually been actively involved in the "Operation Smile" project, but it's only now that I've chosen to share it in my posts. I hope that by reading this, some people can be inspired to want to help these kids.

Everyone deserves to have a beautiful smile. Just because they were born with cleft lips, it doesn't mean that they're damned and they're going to have a distorted image for the rest of their lives. I actually think that these kids are already beautiful and with the corrective surgery, they would be able to lead a normal and happy life.

It's sad how these kids have to live their life feeling dejected just because of a condition which can be easily fixed.

Get involved Their youth and student community.

One famous personality that you may know who have had corrective surgery done is Joaquin Phoenix.

You may recognize him as the guy from the movie, Gladiator. 

There are also a few celebrities who are in support of this project "Operation Smile" such as Jessica Simpson, Justin Timberlake and etc.

Let's help all these beautiful babies. Every dollar counts. Even if you don't have any, just spread the world. Let's raise awareness. Let's help make someone smile. We donate our smile to them, so that when they smile back, our hearts will smile as well. :)

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Never give up!

The sole purpose of writing this blog post, is actually to motivate all my friends who would be sitting for their A2. After A2, we'd be leaving. Moving away from each other. One and a half years (1 1/2) of being classmates, the bitter and sweet memories will all come to an end. But, I've decided to put it in a context that everyone can relate to, whether or not you're sitting for a major exam this year.

I know how it's like when you're studying and all you want to do is slam the book as you get so sick and tired of the endless hours spent staring at it. What's worst is when you can't understand a particular section and all you want to do is walk to the corner of the room and start banging your head at the wall. 

I used to be the kid who would be at ease no matter what happened. Even if there was to be an earthquake, I would be as chill as a cucumber. That was when I was 12 years old. I realized that giving up was just going to make me regret. 5A's, that was the goal. Everyone was talking about it. But somehow, it never seemed to impact me. I used to play with my best friend at that time (who shall not be named). She got 5A's while I got 3A's and 2B's. The turning point was when her mom, came up to my mom to ask what I got when she saw me sobbing fervently, and proudly she said, "My daughter got 5A's". 

That was the day I vowed to myself to never get a B in my life, in major examinations and well enough, I got 8A's for my PMR and 10A's for my SPM. I wanted my mom to be proud of me. 

If I didn't give up at that time, if I strive for it, I know that I would have done better. Till this day, when anyone asks me what I got for my UPSR, I proudly say 3A's 2B's although it's nothing to be proud of, but it taught me a very important lesson, to never give up or fool around. Although, no one believes it when I tell them, cuz somehow, they think I'm really smart. (I don't think I am)

I  know you really want everything to happen for real. Like good grades and all. You don't want it to be a reality in your dream land. It's hard. It takes hard work and perseverance. Sometimes, you're going to want to give up, but NEVER do that!

For all you know, the finish line is just around the corner. But you gave up too soon. You gave up before you saw the finish line. If you just went a little farther, you would have realized that the finish line was just a little way ahead.

Why give up on something when it's the only thing you want? For me, at this moment, the one thing that I want the most is to get straight A's for my A2. I want my A*'s so that soon, I'll receive my acceptance letter into my choice of university. I applied for four of them, all high requirement universities. The reason why, is simple. That is my motivation to push through.

I know if I don't do well, I'll have to stay back a year longer, which is not an option at all. This motivates me to study. 

I've never heard of people who gave up. The person who gave up, was never heard off because he never made it far enough. 

 Many a times, people give up because they think, there's too much to do or there's so far to go or it's just too difficult. But, if you really want it that bad, then, the journey is not important. The lessons you learn along the journey may be. But the hardship of the journey is negligible.

I've formulated an equation for it.


Remember, the beginning is always the hardest. When you decide on learning something new, it's going to be really tough. I still remember how I always wanted to learn to play the violin. But, I have really long fingers because I'm a pianist. So, it's really hard to play without my fingers crossing over clumsily. But, I learnt that practice makes perfect and if I were to give up, I would never be able to play another instrument.

I know how people say that if you suck, you should give up. But I say, if you love it, who cares what other people says about you. Just let them say whatever they want to say. Because, honestly, they don't live your life for you. No, they don't. If they try to tell you what to feel or try to tell you what they think and what you should follow, take a look at their life.

I personally feel that no matter what other people say and talk about, it really doesn't matter as long as you love it. Love it, live it, breathe it. That's my motto. (sub-motto actually)

The decisions you make, the chances you take, everything, you're going to live with it. So, why listen to other people's advice? I mean, you can listen. But, you have to be able to judge the bad and the good. No one can tell you how to feel or how you should feel, that's your own. If you feel that way, by all means, feel that way.

There's another 39 Days before the 1st paper for A2, if you haven't started studying yet, it's not too late. Start now. So what if you've got only a month left? Make good use of all the time you have. Don't spend too much time online. HEH, this goes to me also. :/

Be a believer, never give up. Believe that you will become what you want to be. Don't you dare give up on your dreams. Don't find for excuses. Don't find for reasons. Just do it. If you ever feel like giving up, remind yourself of all the times you held on to it for so long. No matter what you do, if that's exactly what you want, whatever people say, it doesn't matter. Just do it. Don't give up. 

If you do decide to give up, one day, when you look back, don't put the blame on anyone else but yourself. Remember, the decisions you made to give up is yours entirely. Even if it was other people's decision, and you took it, you'd be forced to live with it.

I don't want to live my life filled with regrets and what if's. I want to live my life filled with "Oh Well's". At least, I've made my choices, however horrible it may seem. At that point in my life, that was exactly what I wanted and I will never regret my decisions. 

Chase your dreams. It doesn't matter how slow you go, as long as you embark on your journey. Don't stop, just move forward. It's like a marathon. Even if you can't run anymore, even if you walk, you're ahead of the person who decides to stop. Just know that no matter how hard it feels at the moment, no matter what life throws at you, you have to yell back and say "I'm strong enough", put on a smile and face the world. 

You may seem like an insignificant being in a world filled with more than 7 billion people. But you have to believe that one person can make all the difference in the world. Don't give up.

Study hard, study smart. Don't give up. Don't give up on anything. No matter how hopeless some things may seem, give it a chance and you'll know how worth it may be. Don't give up on anything.

Till my next post. xx

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Troll: Taylor Swift

I don't know if everyone has heard about this yet. But, naturally, as an advocate for the deaf, dumb and blind, I have something to say about this. 

Well, recently, Taylor Swift decided to have a contest where people can go on and vote for her to perform in any school that gets the most vote and on top of that, the top 5 schools with the highest votes will also get a $10,000 grant for their music department. The pictures down below are the screenshots from my computer.

Of course there's no harm in organizing a competition to promote your album. Her new album RED will be released on the 22nd of October 2012. Believe me, I'm a huge fan of hers. Or was? I don't know yet. I'm still anticipating her reaction and her final decision as to where she would be performing.

But, it seems that 4chan and Reddit has decided to troll Taylor for seemingly to them was harmless fun. They started the whole "VOTE FOR HORACE MANN SCHOOL OF THE DEAF AND HARD OF HEARING" campaign. 

Not that I don't get the irony, trust me, I do. But, it's not funny. AT ALL. Deaf people do know how to appreciate music. The only thing they're not able to do is appreciate the lyrics. But, for some who can read lips and the others who eventually will read the lyrics, will be perfectly alright at understanding everything.

If you've ever been to a deaf concert before, you'd know that they have special floors that vibrate to the music that is being played especially constructed by placing speakers under the floor and a balloon in their hands. The resonance is transferred to the floor board and then to them to help them feel the music.

Not everyone is deaf in that school, so, not everyone cannot hear anything. There are those with mild hearing disability, or are not completely deaf. So, they are able to listen with the help of hearing aids and cochlear implants. However, for those who are deaf, although they may not be able to hear, they would very much enjoy the visual stimulation alone.

Even if you have not been to a deaf concert before, you should know that they actually  do appreciate music and I don't know how this is a joke. It's not even funny.

At this moment, there are 62 842 votes for the school. I know it's meant as an internet troll. But, I honestly do hope Horace Mann School for The Deaf really do win the online voting. It would also be right if Taylor Swift did perform in their school instead of searching for reasons not to.

Just because they're deaf, doesn't mean she should cross them out. When I read the papers yesterday, I was in shock and my blood was boiling as I was infuriated and I felt an immense hatred towards everyone involved.

Although it's sole purpose is with the intent of trolling Taylor, I do think if the school do win, it would actually help those kids a lot. I know that deaf people generally like the drums because, when you're on the drums, you actually get to feel the instantaneous vibration through your body. So, it's actually really exciting to feel the music you play.

The link leads you to the school's page. 

The competition goes on until the 23rd of September, you can vote for your favorite school daily. I do hope that everyone do actually vote for Horace Mann School For The Deaf and Hard of Hearing, not because I'm actually supporting the internet troll-ers. But because, I want to see if Taylor Swift would actually go to the school to perform and also, it would be really awesome if those kids did have the opportunity to meet Taylor Swift.

However, if she decides not to go to the school to perform if they win, you can be a 100 percent sure, that I will not have the word Taylor Swift ever be spoken in my presence, also, my respect for her would be gone and I will never buy any of her albums ever again. Also, I will burn every single poster and CD I have of hers and that would be the last time you ever hear me speak of her. 

At this moment, I'm anticipating her reaction and response to the situation and last but not least, I would like to thank all those troll-ers out there. However insensitive you are, you still shed light to the existence of deaf people. Some of those people out there finds it amusing or maybe they just decided to go with the flow. But, to me, it's not funny and honestly, to those who find it funny, let me ask you this "If your kid was to be impaired in anyway at all, and others were placing bets on that kid as to how ill the boy will be in the future, will you be happy?" Karma is only a b*tch if you are.

So, do vote for Horace Mann School For The Deaf and Hard of Hearing. You can vote everyday till the 23rd of September 2012. Let's make it happen! Let's bring Taylor Swift to the school. COME ON PEOPLE! LET'S MAKE IT HAPPEN!

P/S: What you intend to make a negative impact, I will make it a positive one. Whatever you do to make me fall, I will only stand taller and stronger.

Till' my next post. xx