Melanie Sejnowski, Writer

5:35 pm, heart racing, legs weak. Lavender sobbed as she ran away from the town of perfection and utter nonsense. Turning down the street was a court her best friend Taylor lived on. Everything was coming clear to Lavender, this town had to be stopped. Her eyes glided over the sign “Honey Court,” she met with Taylor’s house and banged on the door shaking and shivering. It was around early December and pale, fluffy snow covered the porch. Taylor opens the door with a generous smile, “Lavender, everything okay?” She notices my pale washed out fingertips turn blue and pulls me inside her house. The tears still have not stopped, “What’s going on?”  

 The fear washes over her eyes and she pulls me in for a gentle hug. Our eyes meet, “I can’t take this anymore, I can’t. I live my life in silence and under harsh rules, standards always set.” The fear in her eyes quickly faded into sadness and worry for me.  

 “Wait I’m confused, did you get into another fight with your parents again?” I shyly nodded my head. “What did they say to you?”  

“They want me to go into college to become a nurse, I talked to them about becoming a journalist and they flipped out on me. They said something like ‘You need to keep the tradition.’”  

The worry slid off her face. “I think they should just at least listen to you and get an idea of how much you love to write, Lavender you are so passionate about writing, I mean I have heard your entries and they are incredible.” My heart grew warm. She is on my side. Me and Taylor usually did not agree on anything, and I thought she was brainwashed by her parents’ beliefs and traditions. She brought her shoulders tall and said, “Maybe you should just try becoming a nurse. I mean it couldn’t be that bad.” Well, there goes the idea of “maybe she isn’t brainwashed.”  My jaw grew tight, my legs did not feel weak anymore. I was mad, why can’t people just wake up? This small suburban town was built of doctors and lawyers that would pay all their money just to have their faces placed on a billboard. I gripped the door handle and walked out, And back to square one. 

 I don’t really have many friends, loneliness was the least of my concerns, and I grew up alone surrounded by ideas that would never be shared. Around 7th grade I fell in love with writing, at least it gave me an outlet and somewhere to share my deepest thoughts and desires. 

 I brought my light purple backpack with me, I had an extra pair of clothes, some fuzzy socks, a blanket, two bottles of water, a box of Cheez-It’s, and a leather-bound journal with my name printed on the very front page. I never dreamed of running away from the one place I called home, but if you were in my shoes, you would be gone in an instant too.  

The town of Springfield had a small population of only 5,348. It was getting dark out, my eyes traced over the outlines of a playground. It was small, only a few swings and a slide. I placed myself on the middle swing and slid my bag off my back. I reached for the leather journal and read the first page. 

September 25th, 2019 

Life update 

It’s been a long and slow year. School started and I’m in high school now. Ew. There are so many new people that I didn’t know since they went to a different middle school than me. I hate to say it but, I miss when I was little and in elementary school. I didn’t have to Rember a stupid locker combination or do math that included letters, its math not English. Anyways on another note my birthday is tomorrow, I now understand that when you get older your birthday just gets less fun. Like yeah cool cake and gifts but, I just want a birthday with like a big party and like have so many friends and be the talk of the town. But alas I’m just some shy kid who hates social events, I don’t even like people that much. My mind wants the most, I swear. Mom’s been on me about doing homework and getting off my phone, she threatened to ground me and take my phone away. It’s not like I talk to anyone anyways. I still don’t know exactly what I want to do after high school yet, I just know I like writing and reading a lot. There’s still time ahead of me so I don’t want to stress. Let’s hope this year goes alright. 


December 19th, 2019 


Okay I know I haven’t spoken to you in a little bit but so much has happened since I last wrote. Yes, I did get grounded, no I wasn’t happy. I had to join a club at my school since my mom thinks it would be good for me to make some friends. Springfield is so small and there’s only so many people you can like before you get annoyed. The girls at my school aren’t the sweetest but there is this one guy in art club that talks to me frequently. His name is Ryan James, and he’s kind of cute. He’s tall with brown curly hair, sharp jawline, and light freckles that cover his face. We have a group project that we are all working on currently and he just so happens to be in my group, let me just say he is very talented. Our project is based off a place the whole group likes or finds comforting. I shared that I like the beach and in agreement we began to plan out what to paint and who is going to paint what. Ryan did the water; he used every shade of blue that was offered and made the bleached paper look like the oceans in California.  I did the sunset in the background; both of our work brought the piece of paper to life. When it was time to clean up and get ready to leave the building for the day Ryan walked up to me and complimented me on my art. Okay it was sweet because nobody in Springfield was nice like Ryan James. He has the most genuine smile ever and the prettiest blue eyes. I would be lying if I said he didn’t catch my attention. Maybe this whole club thing won’t be so bad Afterall, keep you updated. 

-Lavender <3 

December 23rd, 2019 

Dreaming of California 

I’m on winter break now, all I can think about is Ryan. We Started break yesterday and me and him discussed our plans over break and he told me he was going to go up north with his dad and his little sister, I’m assuming his parents are divorced. But my mind was so caught up with his plans that I couldn’t even think of what I was doing over break. I told him I was planning on staying home, but I wish I could get out of the house. Now I’m really wishing I wasn’t so shy and could have gotten his snap. Hes miles away from me and I won’t see him or hear from him for the next two weeks, I miss his smile, his laugh, how creative he is, his kind words. I don’t think I have ever thought about someone this much, honestly this is the one-time I’m going to say “mama was right” if I didn’t join the once stupid art club, I wouldn’t have met the boy of my dreams. I’ll keep you updated if anything good happens or, if I ever get Ryan James off my mind. 

-Lavender <3 

January 8th, 2020 

Mind clutter 

My mind is everywhere right now. I want to ask Ryan for his snap or his number. Will he think I’m weird? How do you even approach someone when you want their snap, like do you make conversation, or do you just be straight forward and be like “Hey can I get your snap?” See and this is why I choose to live a lonely life and never talk to guys because I’m always sitting here for a good amount of time worrying so much that I don’t even end up doing it. I remember in middle school I walked up to my little crush I had at the time, ugh his name was Brendan, maybe that was my sign. The name just makes me cringe. Anyways I was still very quiet like I am right now, and I shyly approached him and asked for his snap and his friend had walked by him at the time I said what I did and laughed and said, “Brendan why are you talking to that freak?” And he went along with what his friend had said and walked away from me in a second. Yeah, so ever since that day I chose to kind of just keep to myself and not talk to guys or have crushes on the pretty guys that all the girls gushed over, EW. I just want to get to know more about him and see what he’s like, who knows maybe we will have things in common and ill strike gold, and we will fall in love. Ugh who knows, I’ll let you know if we end up exchanging info and becoming a fairytale love story, or whatever. 

-Lavender <3 





February 14th, 2020 

The day of love 

Well, happy valentine’s day…Here’s to another year of being single and waiting to get the half off chocolate. I honestly want to throw my phone out the window, all I have seen is all my friends receive gifts from their boyfriends and girlfriends, don’t get me wrong im so happy for them but, my god do I wish that was me. To have someone care about you and have someone to get chocolate from other than your own mother. Maybe I would have had my prince charming if I had gone and spoken to him and maybe I would have gotten his snap. One day I’ll do it, just not today. Or ever. I can’t live in fear forever.   

-Lavender <3 

I closed the journal thought about the very last sentence I wrote, “I can’t live in fear forever.” My whole life I hid everything I thought about, I never spoke my mind. The times I did I was shut down, my thoughts were pushed away and rejected. I took the words to heart and just did as I was told, but no, not this time. I ran away from expectations and chased the journey I have always dreamed of.  

 I rose from the cold metal swing and began walking a few blocks until I hit a local 7/11 to go get a Slurpee and something to eat. I gripped the door and passed by aisles of chips and candy, and I picked up the biggest bag of Cheeto puffs then continued to walk past all the drinks, dragging my fingertips across the metal shelves and drifted toward the back of the store to grab a large Slurpee cup and filled it almost overflowing the cup with a pina colada Slurpee. 

Picking up my drink and snack, I proceeded to the front counter, the worker ran up my items and displayed my total on the screen, I reach for my wallet until I feel nothing in my pockets. I forgot my wallet when I ran out of my house earlier that day. My heart dropped to my stomach; I was not only embarrassed but so hungry. I was sick of only living on the box of Cheez-It’s that was almost half empty. 

“Oh no, I left my wallet at my house. I can go put everything back, I’m really sorry.” My voice shook as I pleaded with the cashier how forgetful I was. I reached and grabbed the large bag of Cheetos and my drink which I had taken a few sips of, before I could even move a voice stuck out. 

“I can buy that for you.” The voice was low and husky. 

Shifting my body around to face the person I noticed the most beautiful features on this generous man. He was very tall and without a doubt over 6’3”, He had the prettiest brown hair that curled so perfectly, freckles that dusted over his cheekbones to the tip of his nose, and the lightest blue eyes that shined in the light of the store.  

“That is so kind of you, I wish I could physically repay you. But you already know the story.” I let out a little chuckle and shot him a wide grin. He hands the cashier a ten and a few singles and tells them to keep the change. God he is a good man. 

But something clicked in my mind, that man was no ordinary man. He was someone I had seen before; I just could not figure out who though. I pushed out the question my brain surged me to ask, “Have we met before? You look so familiar.” He seemed confused but managed to answer the question I threw at him, “I’m Ryan James, nice to meet you.” 

BINGO. Ryan James, the man I believed was going to be a mystery and happened to also be my heart throbbing crush in 9th grade art club. My pupils dilated, my heartbeat sped up, I was weak in the legs again. 

“Ryan, Oh my gosh. We had art club together, I thought you were going to be a mystery the rest of my life.” I felt this feeling of shock, but also relief. We exited the store and hugged tightly. He asked me about how high school had been going and what I have been doing, I filled him in on the day I have had and how I am trying to figure out what to do and where to go. 

“You can stay with me and my mom if you’d like.” He exclaimed.  

“Would she be okay with that; I don’t want her to think I’m like homeless or anything.” 

He chuckled at my idea, “Lavender, my mother already knows of you. She would love to fully meet you.” My heart drops at the sentence he just said. How does his mother know about me? Why does she know about me? Does she know that I got grounded and had to join that club her talented son was in? 

“Your mother knows about me?” I take a deep breath as he shakes his head. 

“Wait, how does she know about me though?” 

“The day I met you I thought you were the most gorgeous girl I had laid eyes on; you had this attitude that made me smile, you were the first girl that I felt like actually cared for me. You praised me for my work, my father had always given me such a tough time as a kid and he never understood that I didn’t want to be an engineer, I wanted to become an artist. I would have to hide my supplies that I would buy from Michaels under my bed and pretend to care about the courses he forced me to take in school. I never mentioned the whole “art club” thing to him or else he would freak out on me. I didn’t want to risk it.” My eyes grew large, and my heart stopped for a second. 

“I thought you went on that trip with him. U seemed like you had a close bond with him.” 

He shook his head no and told me that he went on the trip so he could seem like he was as his dad would say “man enough for the real world.” His words broke my heart, I never had the greatest time with my parents and of course they didn’t agree with the ideas I had planned for the future. But I didn’t hide how I felt, I spoke to them about it. I wish I could have known and helped him out. It was too late to help now. 

“I’m so sorry Ryan, I wish I could have been there for you. I would have never guessed any of that was going on in your life.”  

“Lavender, you don’t need to apologize for anything. Some people aren’t fit to be parents if you know what I’m saying.” I knew exactly what he was saying, I was in that spot right now where I felt as though the entire world was against me. My family was my world until the world I had just got crushed to pieces. 

“Do you mind if I stay with you until tomorrow and then I can figure things out with my friend, we got into an argument about my situation.” Nodding his head Ryan led me to his truck that was parked outside of the 7/11, it was a Black Chevy Silverado. It was quite massive compared to me. Ryan was tall so I could see why he liked it.  

I entered the car and drove to his house, I felt comforted by the one person I felt like I had connected with since day one. Finally, I felt free, free knowing someone was not blindsided by the expectations families put on their children. He ran free with me.