Sophomore Year Recap
By Ms. Photoframe
A school year can change you so much as a person. New friends and new experiences. Just like all the other years of your life, it feels really good to watch it all melt and see where your hard work has paid off. Sometimes, we do not reach our goals and we feel demoralized, but hey, life is not full of success. You have to experience failure before you can prosper. Even though this only my sophomore year, it is surely a transition period. It is for sure so much more difficult than freshman year.
I challenged myself by taking an AP world history, also commonly known as WHAP. Though it was only one class, it took up so much of my time. I had to write so many essays, take a lot of notes, and dread so many projects. I can not imagine all the other students who took more than one AP class this year. Though it was difficult, I don’t regret it. I learned to be able to be comfortable with public speaking and write in such a short period of time. Not to mention all the wonderful friends I made. Apparently, mutual complaints and suffering under the same subject can really help you make friends. Besides WHAP, I also learned from so much of my other classes, like chemistry. Chemistry was also a real challenge, but I ended up really enjoying it. I found interest in understanding how such tiny particles can create beauty, process, and damage in the larger scale. Also, I am very thankful for all my teachers. This year, I became closer to my teachers and I was able to understand all the hardships and sacrifices they have to make for us. They deserve more recognition for all the work they do. Dealing with teenagers might just be one of the most stressful jobs.
Besides giving you all a summary of my entire school year, let’s discuss all the lessons I learned within the school year. I always try to remember my experiences, whether it was a bad or good experiences. I learn best from my mistakes. I learned new lessons on friendship, self love, determination, and rejection. Sounds like a cluster of reality, but hey, I’m an open door. There is so much more I learned, but I will stop there for now. Starting a new school year is a lot more stressful than starting a new year, in my opinion. Maybe that will change by the time I stop needing to go to school. A school year keeps you in a building with a bunch of kids for around seven hours or more for 5 days a week, stuffs you with knowledge, and forces you to make new friends. How horrible.
I’m kidding, but it could be true for many people who are not as social, including myself. Everybody has to go through it and it’s just a part of life that we can learn to love. However you might describe your school year, we have to admit that there are a lot of things that we learn other than math equations or the history of the entire world. Let’s take a look.
Let’s begin with friendship. Simple, I made new friends in new classes. I also made new friends from other schools as I attempted to enjoy some football games. Friendship can really shift and change every year. People go and people come in. I stayed with the same group of friends I hung out with from the last five years. However, one of my best friends moved to a different city. I was really sad because I always walked with her home. For the first couple days, I walked alone. I know most people have to or prefer to walk alone, but it was really sad to not have someone to end the day with conversations. However, I soon attended tutoring at my chemistry classroom. My teacher offers tutoring or study hall after school and gives extra credit if you are actively tutoring or being tutored. That was enough reason for me to come in, especially knowing that I did not do much after school but homework. Before I knew it, chemistry became one of my strongest subjects and I became close to a lot of people because of chemistry. Helping others figure out stoichiometry or gas law problems became fun after a while. It is so rewarding to see others, including myself, to finally see how much they understand the process. I also became really good friends with my chemistry teacher. I must admit he is not the greatest teacher, but he is a fantastic tutor. I think he does best with one-on-one with students rather than addressing a crowd. Either way, I will miss him a lot and his terrible chemistry jokes. Friendship also bloomed in WHAP. My incredible whap teacher made the entire class feel like a family. There was not one day I did not hear laughter and WHAP jokes floating around. Because of WHAP, I became a much harder worker and my ambitions and motivations increased. I must say that all the work I have inputted paid off, especially with the help of my new friends and teacher.
Next, let us talk about self love. Self love is a very popular topic nowadays. Our smart asses finally understood that we cannot work without rest. Even machines need time to charge up or else they will overheat or blow up. I don’t think we should blow up. If you are like me, you either feel really lazy or a workaholic. Realistically, there is no in between, at least for me. When I am in work mode, I go hard. I take more notes than I need and I recheck everything like a bazillion times. There is no harm in working hard. I mean you gotta work hard to reach your goals right? Sometimes, we will hit a wall and crash. We will reach a point where we can’t go any further. That does not mean that we got weaker or that we lost, but rather that we simply need to rest before we go further. I’ve learned a lot from this type of feeling. Besides, being weak once in a while is not a bad thing, it makes us human. Weakness does not mean you are unworthy of something. Weakness does not mean you are any less of anybody else around. Weakness is just another reason to become stronger. However, to become stronger, you must know what it feels to be weak. Self love is not about being weak, but rather understanding the importance of being weak. Our bodies, our minds, and our souls can only go so much. Our strengths are not infinite, but rather buildable. We stop and go. If we just go, go, go, we leave so much behind and we forget the real importance of life. It’s not about how many memories you cherish, but how much you cherish those memories. Being able to cherish yourself and who you are and being proud of the person you have become is essential. Also, being able to notice your mistakes, wrong doings, and problems in attitude is also so important. Self love is not all about loving all your achievements, but loving yourself enough to change your attitude for the better. Change can be a good thing. Overall, I have discovered that self love is about allowing yourself the space and time to be human.
Lastly, determination and rejection. I decided to jam these both together because I think they go hand in hand, at least for my situation. Determination, I have always seen as the best part of me. It is the one trait that I know I have. It has never failed me to be so determined, I always get rewarded because of it. This year, I applied for a film program. I worked my butt off for my application making sure everything was perfect. I felt really good about my application and I could sense that I really had a chance to be part of such a learning experiences, surrounded by people who are just as inspired as I was. I was wrong. I did not get in. My application was rejected and I am not gonna lie, I cried. I was really disappointed at myself for not being able to get to the one thing I was really looking forward for. I thought this proved that I was incapable or unskilled. I felt like a joke trying to apply to such a prestigious program. I began to wonder and compare myself to all the other possible talents out there who applied. Who was I to dare and compete for a spot against them. It became a very unhealthy mindset and I decided to just try and let it go, but that too was difficult. I felt so limited, with no potential in what I want to accomplish in life. I know this is just one application and I am not the only one who was rejected, but that does not change the fact that I was upset. I tried not to show it in front of my friends who knew about my application. I tried to play it off cool or like I accepted it, but I still did not feel good. I decided it was probably a sign of the universe telling me that there are other plans for this summer, and there are. I really want to fill this summer doing what I love and that is writing scripts and other forms of art. I want to finally finish and produce the stories I have made. Maybe the so called, “rejection,” is actually an opportunity for me to build on my skills before I try again next year. And I will be determined to do so. So many kids are getting their chance this year to surround themselves with film, and I hope next summer, I will be able to do so too.
This school year was full of ups and downs, laughter and tears, happiness and pain. It was a good year for me. It helped me create better relationships with people, love myself, and learn to be stronger, despite being rejected. Rejection is hard for me to accept, but it is part of life. I think rejection is such a negative word to describe it. Let us just call it, “it is not your time yet.” Such a long phrase (lol). I just have to wait until it’s my time, patience is key. And my new friends, I will always treasure them. And myself, I will continue to learn to treasure. Sophomore year was quite a busy year, filled with so many memories. I can’t fit them all here because…well, that will bore you. This might be boring enough. Anyways, sophomore year is just one fraction of my life, but it has done so much for me. I can’t wait to write about being a junior next year.