Stay true to thyself

Life is unpredictable in both good and bad ways; however, it is how we choose to react to the uncontrollable things in life that matters. You won’t always get what you want, and sometimes we must accept that.

I remember the first day of Intro to Journalism as if it were yesterday. Upon arriving, I had plans to transfer out of the class. I did not get my first pick elective, Argument & Debate 1. I was placed into my second to last backup elective, and I determined the solution to this debacle was to take Chorus. I had many challenging classes, so the last thing I needed was more homework. 

The first thing I told the journalism teacher, Mr. Fleckenstein, was that I was waiting for the guidance office to change my schedule. However, in the first few days of his class, I felt something special. It was a feeling that took me back to my childhood. At the age of four, I was gifted a small, ringed binder with empty lined paper. I filled this notebook with foamy stickers and photos of my family; the majority of the pages contained short cartoons illustrated by yours truly. I loved telling stories. This nostalgia was beyond sentimental, and I discovered that my childhood dreams could be carried into my high school years. I aspired to write, freeing my mind from all outside influences.

I decided to stay in Intro to Journalism. This single choice led me to be part of the Newspaper Production team for three years now. I do not know who I would be without this class. I have written dozens of articles, blessing me with the opportunity to grow closer with people of all ages. I share the passions and creativity they are brave enough to reveal. I tell stories, embracing the strongest desires of my childhood.

At the beginning of my junior year, fellow Knight Krier writer Max Christopher invited me to be on the “To-Knight Show” podcast. On “The To-Knight Show”, we conversed with students, a mayor, Hollywood producer, and many more. Hours passed, listening to guests share inspiring stories, expressing their passions. If you do not share your voice, it is still powerful to share the voices of others. 

I have distributed my time to a fair share of activities such as Model United Nations, Student Council, Seminary for my church, and numerous AP classes- believe me I know what burn-out is. How to avoid it? Use three resources: self care, relationships, and God. Not a lot of great things resulted from the COVID-19 pandemic, but I learned the importance of developing a structured sleep pattern. Sleep affects your day-to-day life on top of the longevity of your mortality. You cannot truly be yourself without the proper CDC recommended hours. Enjoy silence. Often, I felt hyper-stimulated at the end of school days, tired of my teammates, and extremely tempted to delete social media off of my phone because life felt so noisy. You need moments throughout your day just to yourself. Go on long runs/walks without music. Spend time deep in thought, and you will discover who you are. Some of the best initiatives and ideas of my life came to me while showering in silence. Avoid people who will drag you down; rather, surround yourself with people who support and uplift you. They respect your need for space, and want to see you succeed. They enjoy your presence simply because it’s you. Undoubtedly, hard work contributed to my accomplishments over the years; however, a critical reason for my success in life is Heavenly Father. Placing my trust in Him has led me to know that everything happens for a reason. Through times where I have felt low, He has reassured through the Holy Ghost that I am loved and needed in this world. I encourage all- regardless of religious beliefs- to try to grow a relationship with God. I can promise you that learning of God and our mortal existence will make life more meaningful.

I do not have a lot of regrets in life, but I do have many goals for the future. I want to travel the world, go to more sporting events, and spend my moments of free time trying new foods with friends. As a reward for the past four years, I am attending college for free. I am still responsible for covering my room & board, but everything else has been covered. Now, I am one step closer to a debt free twenties.

All of this would not have been possible without the excellent staff and opportunities at Norwin; and to that I say, thank you.