Thank You OVS

I’ve started this draft several times. I’ve written sentences and sentences only to change them, revise them, and, eventually, just completely eradicate them and end where I started: with nothing. Because every time I try to write about this, I can’t formulate the right words to say. Even though I’ve discovered at OVS that one of my biggest passions is writing, I’m speechless when I try to write about what these last four years meant to me.

When I came to OVS for the first time, I was an awkward freshman. I had no friends, no idea what I was doing, and no idea who I was or who I wanted to be.

The four years to follow threw me in for a loop of highs and lows in self development, friendships, and life. Now I have just a couple days until the craziest, most amazing four years of my life come to an end. Every year at this time, I had a strong desire for the days to end as quickly as possible so I could enjoy my summer break. This time, I’m scared for the inevitable last day of school to come. I’m holding on to every last second I can.

I’ve been to three graduations here. Every single one making me sadder than the rest, but there was always happiness in my heart when I’d hug my friends goodbye for the summer, especially because I knew I’d see them again. On May 31st, I’ll hug all my friends, but, when fall rolls around, I won’t see them again on the hill that’s been my second home for the past four years. We’ll all be scattered across the country taking on different cities and pursuing different passions. We won’t see each other at breakfast every morning or at the barn at the end of every day. We’ll see each other through FaceTime calls and at reunions during our holiday breaks. I’m bound to cry at graduation because of it all.

I’m happy we’re all going to colleges we want to go to and I know that these friends are the ones I’ll have for life. But the realization that this is our last week as high schoolers together is still sending a wave of shock over me that I’ve been drowning in the past couple weeks.

I’m horrified for what the future holds, but, at the same time, I feel so ready. Four years ago, I wasn’t sure if I would ever be ready for college and eight years ago I didn’t have any faith that I would even be going to college. Now, I’m excited to walk into the unknown and I have OVS to thank for it all:

For being a school that’s given me the opportunity to branch out and try everything I could ever want to try. I didn’t have to stick to one niche. I got to be a risk-taking athlete, an unfiltered writer, a confident leader, and everything in between.

Photo Credit: ocsaledger.com

The equestrian program for giving me a horse I love more than myself. For giving me a place I’ve made my best friends.

The camping trips where I went running through the Yosemite forests at night time with no flashlight and rode the bull of the raft while river rafting on the Kern trip. For making me push my limits and having them turn out to be the most rewarding moments of my life. For making me realize I love camping even though I hate going days without showering.

For my AP Spanish class making me fall in love with the language all over again and decide to study abroad in Spain instead of France. Law/Gov class that furthered my excitement to move to D.C. to study politics and intern on Capitol Hill. Especially for my journalism class that provided a source of gossip, a place to rant, and an endless supply of snacks, but more importantly, it has given me an outlet to explore writing and inspire me to pursue it in college.

Thank you for everything. For the good, the bad, and everything in between. No words could say it all.

I’m not gonna lie and say this school is perfect. There’s so much I’ve complained about and so many things I would change. But if I’m going to be honest, it was perfect for me. It was the place I needed for the kind of person I was to become who I am today. I had no idea what my purpose was or what my passions were and, while I’m still on a road of self-discovery, OVS put me on the right path.

And for that, I’ll forever be thankful.

The Years

I wanted time to speed up.  Everything seemed like it was moving slower than a tortoise going for an afternoon stroll.  I wanted everything to end.  It seemed like those 4 years would drag on and would take up my whole life.  I always thought that those 4 years would be filled with tears of stress and sadness.  I really believed they were going to be the worst 4 years of my life.

But, now, I’m sitting in my last class of high school and all I’m asking for is five more minutes.  Everything flashed by in the blink of an eye.  I want to relive so many things.  Those 4 years went by too fast and seemed like they were one of the smallest parts of my life.  The years were filled with tears of stress and sadness, but they were also filled with happiness and love.  So far they have been the best 4 years of my life; I made so many friends, had so many new experiences, and really learned who I was.  I just want to live in it for five more minutes.

Photo Credit: Pinterest.com

Time

Five weeks.

Twenty-five weekdays.

Thirty-two days.

I never thought those numbers could ever mean so much to me.  I have five weeks, twenty-five weekdays, and thirty-two days left of my senior year.  I will be free once those are all zero.

I will officially be done with school.  I will be a college girl.  I still can’t believe I am almost done with the four years I dreaded the most my whole life.  The four years I wanted to be done are almost that: done.

I am a very different person from who I imagined myself to be and I know I am not done growing and figuring myself out, but I love who I’ve become and don’t want to change anything.  I almost wish I could pause these last few weeks and live in them for a little while longer.

I can’t wait to get away from here.  To start my life with no boundaries.  These weeks are something that can’t go by fast enough.

I wish these weeks would pass by in the blink of an eye, but I wish I could look back on them and remember everything I am feeling now.

Photo Credit: Pinterest.com

Five weeks.

Twenty-five weekdays.

Thirty-two days.

Endings

So it is essentially the end of the school year at this point and a lot has changed over the last year. I have lived a year of new experiences.

At the beginning I was excited, but fear always gripped the back of my throat. Over time that feeling faded after acquiring new friends and finding a real home at OVS.

Writing these blogs and journalism in general has helped me more than I would have liked to admit. I am entering a lot of projects this summer pertaining to writing and I fell like a much more confident writer.

I have learned incredible things this year and I want to use this opportunity to thank everyone that helped me this year.

Thank You.

Me

On the Hill word press has served as a great outlet for all my moods, disasters and has allowed me to document my growth over the past 2 years in America. Regaining my passion for writing through this medium, I am thankful for the experience and I have learned so much.

Blogging has taught me how to write, document and learn from others. With the help of this and my teacher I have been put on my path being connected with a passion for journalism, media and writing.

I don’t know where I’d be today if I hadn’t participated in this class and had the guidance. In fact I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t be going anywhere.

It’s strange how by doing the simplest things and making the right decisions we grow and progress so much. Like I’ve said many times before it’s the whims we take and the things we fear the most that make us grow and that’s what’s happened to me.

Today is my graduation. I would have never thought I’d be saying that 2 years ago. I’m so thankful for the education I’ve received, the people I’ve met and the teachers who have guided me making me a better person and putting me on my path. I am also thankful to my parents and I owe them sincere apologies for the way I treated them before the move.

Moving forward is the only option in life, take opportunities and follow your heart and you will find true happiness. Trust me, I’m talking from experience.

This is the End

You may see a few other posts from my fellow OVS bloggers regarding our impending graduation.

What a trip it has been. I have been at OVS for six years and they have been fantastic.

Like at any other school, we bitch and moan about the problems, and there have been many. But when I look at the growth I have experienced and seen within my friends I realize what I have been given.

Going to a private boarding school as a day student can be tricky, but I have learned to play the game.

I have dealt with having a relative has my headmaster as well as having family intertwined with the school history.

My first day, the headmaster told me “I failed with your father, I failed with my son and goddammit, I’m not going to fail with you.”

Although I loath to concede anything to him, I will admit he has not failed. He has given me “character”, although the integrity may still need some work.

I should have been kicked out many, many times. I have thought about leaving even more times.

But endings change the picture. They throw out the individual memories and give you and overall feeling. I can say that the feeling I have is a positive one.

Although I am ready to leave, I appreciate what I have been given and greatly value that gift.

Beginning of the End


I can picture myself on June 8th, 2012. I’ll be standing on stage, in front of my peers and my family, accepting my high school diploma. And it will officially be over. These four dreaded years we call high school will OFFICIALLY be in my past. I have dreamed about this moment for so long.

I should be feeling happy. Actually, I really should be feeling overjoyed. Completely ecstatic. And a part of me is very excited for that moment to come. A small part.

The bigger part of me is feeling overwhelmed, nervous, and sad.

Ojai Valley School has not been my only high school experience. Public school came first. Back then, I never pictured anything different than walking out with about 500 other students accepting our diplomas on the gigantic front lawn of my public high school. And thank God I was wrong about that.

This school has taught me everything I know about myself, really. I have discovered so much more than I knew existed within myself. I remember the day that I showed up here. I wanted to leave more than anything. I wanted my old life back and I wanted to go home.

Now, this is home. This place is my home. Not just a place that I live, but much more than that. I have made countless friends, some of them who I hope I will know for the rest of my life. I look up to some of the faculty at this school more than I look up to anyone I have met before. They have really pushed me to be my best self. Without them, I would not be who I am today, and I really owe everything to them; they are truly a second family.

With them, I have laughed, I have cried, and I have laughed and cried some more. I have argued, I have slacked off, I have worked hard, I have tried new things. I have sang, I have danced, I have met amazing people, I have been pushed to my limits. But the most important thing that I have done here at OVS is I have found myself.

I know, 9 months seems so far away, but really I know that it will come much too quickly. Time really does fly by, and for once in my high school career, I wish it would just slow down so I could enjoy the amazing moments of my senior year that are to come.

So, with a heavy heart I say to you all, here’s to the beginning of the end. Because before I know it, it will be June 8th, 2012, and I will be standing on stage in front of everyone, saying goodbye, looking back at all the good memories I have of this place. Bitter-sweet is the only way to describe it. And who knows where I will be headed after then? As the saying goes, “when one door closes, another door opens.” As much as I look forward to everything in my future, I just wish this door would never have to close.