Thursday, June 25, 2015

Determination and Creativity

Back when I was in high school the nation's attention was captured by one of the worst school shooting ever to happen, Columbine. Like so many other students across the country my school was effected doing everything we could to make sense of the tragedy as well as find some way to reach out and let the victims know our hearts were with them. My wonderful Japanese instructor came up with an idea. She told us the legend of Sudako and the Thousand Paper Cranes.

According to the legend if you make one thousand origami cranes and make a wish then the wish will come true. Shortly after the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima Sudako became very ill. Radiation poisoning was taking her young life so she decided to make the cranes to wish for a cure. Sadly Sudako died before she was able to make even four hundred of the cranes. Her devastated classmates finished the task for her and created a memorial to her. 

The story about making the cranes and being granted a wish may be just legend but Sudako was real and so is her memorial. My school created the thousand paper cranes three times over sending a video along with the story and one thousand of the cranes to Columbine as a symbol that we were with them. The second thousand were hung in my school in Michigan as a reminder. We spoke with the local news about what we were doing and why giving more people a chance to step up and help us as we produced the cranes. 

The final thousand travelled that summer to Japan as part of a school trip I was fortunate enough to be a part of. I stood by as my teacher, or sensei as we called her, placed the cranes among the piles from around the world brought by those wishing to pay their respects. It was an awe inspiring moment in my life and has gone on to lead me to do more along the same lines. Such as take the understanding from a friend that started a book series that donated money to charity. Her books were about the healing power of music but it made me think that I could do the same thing for animals.

I work part time and therefore live paycheck to paycheck but I wanted to show that with determination and creativity we can all make a difference. Just like taking the time to make the cranes to let the students of Columbine know they were in our hearts and minds I am now working to create an event that would benefit a wonderful organization here in Vegas. I do not have the money to book a ballroom or the funds for a gourmet feast but I am going to find donations and volunteers to prove that we can do anything we put our minds to as long as we are willing to think outside the box. 

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