Tina’s epic goodbye: an honest reflection

Tina Ryu/ Features Editor

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   I visited Hudson High School for the first time in fourth grade to watch the children’s play. Tightly holding onto my mom’s hand, little me was so intimidated by the grand scale of my surroundings. The building was five times the size of McDowell, the auditorium seats basically swallowed up my tiny frame, and the people towered over me. However, as a happy-go-lucky child, I forgot all of this anxiety once the play started. When it ended, I chased down the main actress to get an autograph and take a picture with her. She was so mature, kind, tall and popular, and I aspired to be like her. I remember thinking, “All high school students must be like this!” (Just as a side note, I was also at that age where I believed adults didn’t make mistakes and were invincible).
     Let me assure you that this illusion shattered pretty quickly—mostly because I realized I never became the ideal “adult.” High school has never been what I’ve imagined it to be—I was not always enveloped by a group of friends, I didn’t always enjoy sporting and other social events or do well on tests. But I do have some memorable events to share:  
     1. While walking into school, I slid and almost tripped on a piece of ice—and while one may say, “At least you didn’t fall,” I would like to respond that I would have much rather slipped and fallen rather than frantically waving my arms around and somehow achieving the splits (which I always failed to do during cheerleading). 
     2. During my acid-base titration in AP Chemistry, I titrated an acid with an acid, and wondered why my pH level was so low. I finally caught myself using the wrong chemical on the 100th drop count.
     3. Again in AP Chemistry, I broke a flask and a glass stirrer on the same day. The glass shattered on the ground, sending hundreds of shards and pieces of my dignity far into the cracks of the floor.
     4. On the first day of junior year—emphasizing junior—I sat in the wrong class for 45 minutes. I was also so overwhelmed that I didn’t notice my backpack was wide open until I arrived in the right class.
     5. Half-way through softball season my freshman year, my mitt and face decided to switch roles.
     6. I stayed up all night and studied the wrong material for a test and had to completely wing it the next day. I don’t understand how a human being can study a completely different chapter and not realize it, but I sure didn’t.
     Looking back, all of my most memorable moments are embarrassing and idiotic. I thought during senior year, I could finally redeem myself as a graceful, well-balanced young adult, but I was wrong—again. But I remember them most because of the people involved in these situations.
     Someone was always there—a teacher or a fellow peer—wanting to help and showing genuine care and consideration. I met some of the most compassionate people here at Hudson, and they have given me the desire to treat others the same way.      
     I know that Hudson isn’t the most tight-knit group as a whole, and some people can be rude, but kind individuals are not hard to find. You learn from them, laugh with them, grieve with them.
     The memory of my first visit to HHS seems so relative that sometimes I can’t help but feel surprised that my feet don’t dangle from the seats anymore, that I sit in perfectly-sized chairs and that I am surrounded by people that don’t seem so big and invincible anymore (please don’t comment on my height, thanks). I watch my own peers perform on stage, sign autographs for children and pose for photographs for the local newspaper. 
     Sometimes I see little girls giggling to themselves or clapping with excitement as they chase after their role models, desperately desiring to become “adults” like them. I can’t help but seeing my younger self in these girls, and often times, I want time to rewind, so I can  tell little Tina that high school students are human and make numerous mistakes.
     I want her to know the truth. I wish I could tell her that she wouldn’t grow up to be perfect but would obtain irreplaceable friends and teachers who teach you to love your flaws and use your strengths to your advantage.
     I want you all to know the truth: that high school will bring some of the most painful moments and embarrassing situations. That sometimes, it will make you cry and scream and anxious. That high school students aren’t always mature and honest and caring. But also that it will give you the most beautiful memories and friends and the ability to accept the truth with a good heart. That each one of us are human with dreams and expectations and ambitions; we all hold fragments of the will of Hudson—to be kind and zealous—even if some are bigger than others.
     So whether you want to cry or laugh, play or study, give or take advice, do it wholeheartedly and genuinely. Because that’s the spirit I envision of Hudson, and something that we should hold dearly forever.


2015-05-19 08:33:51