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Stuff: If That's What You Wanted

Joined: 11/15/2013
Posts: 3
Last year I, like many others, found myself grasped by the prospect of Black Friday. The commercials were the movie trailers, my friends gave the reviews, but Black Friday was a movie I kept missing out on.

It wasn't that I was forbidden by my parents to go, but that despite growing expectations and a want to participate in the thrill so many annually experienced, there was something that stopped me.

That something was Thanksgiving.

I had it all planned out, I would go with my friends late Thanksgiving night, and finally watch that movie I kept missing out on, I'd finally go Black Friday shopping. All I needed was a yes from my parents, but no matter how hard I tried, I couldn't get the words out of my mouth.

There I was at the cramped Thanksgiving table, with twenty other relatives, contemplating how I'd break the question. I zoned out as people ate, passing all the different foods back and forth to each other, and determined I'd ask them that night, looking down to realize my plate was thoughtfully filled by one of my relatives.

Laughter and conversations danced on the air, as I remained separate from the magic of the holiday in contemplation. I barely opened up to all the happiness. It was when the turkey was totally shaved down that it hit me.

I had absolutely everything I wanted right in front of me. I had a plate full of food, a big family and the best parents in the world. Asking my parents to go Black Friday shopping would be telling them I wasn't content with what I had.

Black Friday wasn't a movie to me anymore; it became a sad documentary of people who confused need and want, who didn't know how to realize they had enough. It was stores preying on the purity of Christmas and gift giving.

The question, once crawling across my lips, had flown away. Instead I bonded with my family and enjoyed the holiday; informing my friends I had changed my mind.

That night, I laid in bed with a soft smile on my lips, watching as the clock passed the time I would have been arriving at the stores. My phone vibrated, and after a stretch, I reached for it. My friend had asked if I was sure, and I replied the affirmative.

The vibration roused my warm, sleepy hands and I read her text in the dark: “If that's what you wanted.”

I rolled over and closed my eyes with warmness coming from my heart. She seemed to misunderstand that it was exactly what I wanted. I wanted to be thankful, because often in this world people confuse the amount of stuff they have and how much of it they really need. Often people put too much importance into little things that will lose their worth come next Black Friday. Often people simply have too much stuff.
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Comment by thiegsr

Joined: 11/6/2008
Posts: 702
On behalf of the entire editorial board, I would like to congratulate you for your STUFF essay being chosen as 1 of the essays in the running for 1st place in this month’s writing competition. This is a huge accomplishment, so please feel free to share your “runner up” status with the world.

We are in the process of narrowing our selection down to the top 10 essays, and then we will be selecting our top three winners, and naming the 1st place winner from the narrowed field. If you are selected as the winner of this month’s competition, we will contact you directly via the email you used for registration.

Thanks for adding your voice to our mission “Changing the World, One Story at a Time”

Rebecca Thiegs Co-Founder and Education Consultant
Posted: Tuesday, December 3, 2013 5:08:04 PM
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Comment by DarkStar49

Joined: 5/28/2009
Posts: 332
There's an old saying, "money can't buy you love". So it's said, happiness is'nt based on 'stuff'! Great essay and kudos on a responsible and mature descision!

Greg Phillips
Editor, Stage Of Life
Posted: Wednesday, December 4, 2013 3:30:26 PM
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Comment by NicoleLVMullis

Joined: 5/9/2012
Posts: 34
This isn't just a great essay, but great storytelling.

Thanks for sharing it.

Nicole L.V. Mullis
Raising a Family Editor
Posted: Tuesday, December 10, 2013 4:26:56 PM
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Comment by Soni2468

Joined: 11/15/2013
Posts: 3
Thank you! It means so much!
Posted: Wednesday, December 11, 2013 1:19:21 AM
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Comment by thiegsr

Joined: 11/6/2008
Posts: 702
On behalf of the entire editorial board, I would like to congratulate you as being selected as the Teen Writing Contest 1st place winner in our November / STUFF writing contest. This is a huge honor and you should celebrate your accomplishment. We will be contacting you via your registration email for prize details.

If you want to view all the results from this contest, use this link:

Thanks for adding your voice to our mission “Changing the World, One Story at a Time”

Rebecca Thiegs Co-Founder and Education Consultant
Posted: Thursday, December 12, 2013 5:39:09 PM
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Comment by Chaitalitt

Joined: 11/19/2013
Posts: 2
This piece of writing is simply wonderful! Nice and mature decision made!
Posted: Saturday, February 1, 2014 9:52:58 AM
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Comment by MAGASlayer

Joined: 11/9/2016
Posts: 1
I think this a great story!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Posted: Wednesday, November 9, 2016 5:56:16 PM
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Comment by hopperyelena

Joined: 12/22/2017
Posts: 1
Amazed by the way you put things. I completely agree with the fact that people have simply too much stuff and they take things for granted.

People who live in scarcity, know the actual value of things.

For a simple example, people who are born rich will never give importance to money as the person who was born poor and then got rich by their own hard work....
Yelena Hopper............ PenMyPaper
Posted: Friday, December 22, 2017 6:05:55 AM
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