A Human Project

WORDS BY ANASHE BARTON / @ANASHEBARTON



Experiences. 
They change us, they grow us, they destroy us. A few weeks ago, I asked followers on my personal blog to send submissions of their own experience.  I asked for anything and everything. Stories, experiences, words of advice, random streams of consciousness... and it bloomed beautifully. Here is a medley of submissions from people all over the globe. 

Although I must point out, many of the submitters wished to be anonymous and some only left initials. Whatever else is confidential. You can see the full set of submissions on my blog here.

Let us begin...



So yes, you wanted stories. I'm currently a senior in my high school and the BIG nation-wide exam is weeks away. It's a one time only thing so you have to do well if you want to get into a good university. That's my life right now. I just want to read books, watch movies and drink tea without feeling guilty. I just want this year to end. This isn't a story I guess, just the state I'm in. What about you?
- Anonymous

"I am 17 and I live in Armenia. My world used to look so dull until I understood that I am in love with him. We might never meet again but I'll always cherish the moments spent with him, the only hug he gave me, the glances we shared, those late night conversations. The short recording of my darling's voice is one of my biggest treasures. I am glad i could do something good for him. I would do more. I'd give all of me if he gave me a chance. Even though he doesn't love me back, he is a treasure."
- anonymous 


"I'm 24 and I live in Canada. My experience is that life isn't anything you think it will be. I learned I can't take other peoples' lives and compare them to my own. Being in my 20s isn't anything like I thought it would be. I still feel like a teenager a lot of the time. Society likes to make you grow up faster than you need to. Take life at your own pace, think about what makes you happy."
- user

"I live a lifeless life, I know life is beautiful but we're a complicated creatures, I don't like this sad mood I want to breathe I want to make sure that I'm alive."
- Anonymous

"Once upon a time, there was a very sad boy, whom hated himself for being born the way he was: gay. He went on many quests to find back what was stolen from him, by society, by culture, by ignorance : his self love. Years later, the boy became a man, and he made peace with himself at 21. The darkness shattered to bring Light forward. The irony here is how much Compassion and Love bloomed within his soul, a burning sun of Humanity. This story has no end yet, this man is at the dawn of his Adventures."
- anonymous


"Sometimes people just enter our lives and change our world. Like my teacher. He encouraged me like no one else did. I will always be thankful to him for being there for me for giving me advice like even my parents never did. He made me a better person and I wish everyone meets someone like him".
- anonymous

"Almost 18, taking my a-levels in April and still have no idea what I'm going to do after graduation. I sometimes wish I'd still be in 10th grade, just to have more time to think about my life after school. I feel so lost and insecure."
- anonymous



"I'm 19 and i live in germany and i found that magic really does exist, if you know where to look. it might be seeing a full moon behind tree branches at night or hearing someone play their piano as you're walking down the street. and also, real life adventures might not be like the ones you read about in books, but they are worth experiencing anyway."


"Within two years before turning 20 years old, I realized that my parents aren't me. I am me, they are them. We are three solitary individuals, separate. It took me some time to understand this fact. When I finally did, I was initially grief-stricken because I felt desolate. I then understood that my grief had its ground in me. I made me desolate, I did not (nor do I yet) love myself enough to be able to be my own. But I'm trying. Oh, how I'm trying."
- anonymous




"I've been with the same kind-eyed boy since I was fifteen. Recently, a blue eyed stranger has had the audacity to come into my carefully curated existence and create an intense, terrifying longing that feels like every bad decision I never made. He says to me, 'I listen to the beach boys and think of you, with your golden hair' and I feel it from the corners of my eyes, to the back of my knees. I think to myself that he reminds me of all the sunrises I slept through. I don't know what to do."
- anonymous




"I live in the north, likely infamous (as some of its neighboring countries) for the general principal of discouraging individual progress and ambitions. Surely, it exists elsewhere too (even a flower spreads seeds). Take the word and they'll take your voice. Soon enough, rather than losing A voice (your own vanishes with following sentence constituent), one adapts the word of the rest. Beware the danger of this principal. Sell your voice and you sell your soul. Sell your soul, who would own it?"
- anonymous




"When I was 14, I climbed the Matterhorn. I had several near-death experiences, but when I got to the top, the world had never seemed so clear. Ever since then, I've had a completely different outlook on life."
- user



"I lost my mother five months ago. Reality hits you at the strangest times. You sob and writhe and expel and mourn and continue to disbelieve, wandering around your apartment while doing normal tasks because life has to go on, as you experience the completely normal abnormality that is human grief. An ever-present ball of tar in your chest. People tell you that there is a 'new normal' you'll get used to. I disagree. You have to get used to the 'new.' It doesn't feel normal to be motherless at 23."
- anonymous

"In my dreams my future Love had blonde and curly hair, blue eyes, gorgeous cheekbones, played piano and guitar, lived in another country for a long time and had a good sense of humor... I was really looking for him. I found him. I mean he was right there and couldn't see it was him! He has black curls, gorgeous cheekbones, brown eyes, plays piano and guitar and lived in Russia for more than ten years. I didn't want to confess myself that I loved him. I used to hate him, to be honest. But he is my sun now."
- anonymous

"2015 was the most important and incredible year of my life. I understood that I should be an artist and started my way, I have a best friend now and I fall in love for the first time. I really wanted to meet my other half as soon as possible and couldn't even realize that I was already in love with this precious boy. I was looking for treasure but he was right there. Sometimes we just need to open our eyes and heart."
- anonymous




"I spent the whole year of 2015 incredibly sad. But I'm kind of okay with it because I gave myself TIME. I gave myself a break from people who weren't good for me. And I realized it's okay to be sad or happy or a mixture of both. It's okay to have these mixed emotions at first because a year later for me, I felt relieved and myself again. Possibly an even stronger version of myself. Giving yourself time is so important whether it be a few weeks, months, year. It's okay."
- 20 | CA, USA

"I am so thrilled to finish my bachelors and begin better and newer things. Honestly, the first thing that I am trying to prioritize is myself. I've learned that sometimes I do need to be selfish in the sense that I put my happiness and health first. By doing this, I have become so happy with not only mentally but physically. By learning to fall in love with my body and acknowledging my strengths and weaknesses, I feel as though I'm at least one step closer to achieving my goals and plans."
- anonymous

"Love is like a warm blanket during a cold autumn day. I have tons of phobias but when I think about him everything I am afraid of disappears. I feel the warmth. It is the most fulfilling feeling one can experience."
- anonymous

"I guess the biggest mistake we can make is not appreciating and enjoying each second, each glance and smile shared with the people we love. Just open out heart to understand ourselves and our feelings. Those moments can be gone forever. We don't know what will happen next month, next week, hour, minute..."
- anonymous

"The thing that creates people’s insanity is the frustration of trying to explain something that no one can see, and doing it everyday. It leaves you tainted, disheartened, and exhausted and you have no choice but to walk away and just endure that pain until it decides to clear out or until your head hits the pillow that night. And then you wake up and pray that you won’t have to do it again." - R. Elizabeth


To all of my submitters: Thank you for taking part in this small observation. Thank you for your perspective, and thank you for your advice.

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