growing pain

you’re either the one getting hurt or the one doing the hurting

when you grow apart from someone

such a weird thing

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all the years of memories and love and

all the time spent together

suddenly condensed into a single moment when you realize

“we’re so different now”

“we want other things”

“we’ve both changed so much”

or condensed into the single moment where

you realize you simply just don’t see each other anymore

when you don’t have the time you used to for the person

when the reminders of them in everything become reminders of other people

all of the hours, months, years spent together

condensed into the single moment when you realize that you’ve grown apart.


One More Time

This is a pretty emotional blog for me to write being as I’m unsure on my future. This weekend may or may not be the last football game of my career. It’s been an amazing road since I first strapped on the pads. Before I get too sentimental, I would like to point out that there is still a strong chance that I will be eligible to play next year for OVS.

I have been thinking to myself a lot lately about what obstacles and challenges I was forced to face to get where I am today. I wasn’t always a great player. In fact, in my early days, I was down right AWFUL!

I remember my first year of competitive football. We only had one game that season and everyone got a chance to play. It wasn’t really competitive, but it was organized. That season was supposed to introduce the youth of Summit, New Jersey.

That’s exactly what it did. The Summit Hilltoppers had a long tradition of competing for championships annually. My second year of football was a reflection of that tradition. However, none of our success had anything to do with me. Enter Jamie White.

Jamie was a friend of mine. He was a monster of an athlete and he still is to this day. One particular play comes to mind about my youth football days with Jamie White. We were pinned down on our own 5 yard line. We needed 10 yards for the first down but we needed to get away from our end zone. Most teams wouldn’t call a halfback draw right up the middle. That play is usually a short yardage play.

Not for Jamie.

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Here it is. June 3rd.
Just five more days until I walk across that stage and receive my diploma.

Who knew high school went by as fast as they said it did?

My five year journey here at Ojai Valley School has been unforgettable.

I started out in 8th grade at the Lower Campus. Although it was a great change from a large school of over 2,000 students, the warm and inviting faculty and friends I met made the adjustment easy.

I had a great year learning how to camp, do my own laundry, and take on the responsibilities of living in a dorm. Not the mention, the close bonds I made with the girls I lived with. It was a different kind of bond than the most of the ones I made in public school. Having lived with these girls, I felt almost as if I was amongst sisters.

So, after graduating, the decision was easy. I knew I wanted to go to Upper for high school.

My freshman year, I roomed with my best friend from Lower, Wendy Lin.

Now let me say something about her. I have been my most vulnerable with Wendy. I opened up to her about things I never really shared with anybody else, and she did the same. So when we roomed together, it was like I was with family. We both knew each other enough not to argue. So when I say, although we had our ups and downs, I am generally talking about the ups when it comes to Wendy. When I think of my freshman year, she is among one of the first people that pop into my mind.

Then there is Lucy Kim. Ah, she is so dear to me. Not only did we click because of our similar humor, she lifted me up when I was down and always was there for me when I needed prayer requests. She also listened to me when I needed her and let me realize that  She even got us transportation to go to church on Sundays so that we could keep our faith, after I told her how hard it was not to go to church.

Cooper, Jeremy, Oussou and Parker. Boy, were they funny people. Of course, when you are that young, seniors seem so much older than they actually are, and these were the people I looked up to. They had close, lasting bonds that were connected by years of laughter. Although they probably had no idea, my senior year was affected so much by the optimism and attitude they brought to the school.

The first half of my sophomore year was spent at Beverly Hills High School. That semester was definitely a learning experience for me. The big public school experience was new to me, having been in a private boarding school of just over 100 students. Regardless, I returned to OVS with a newfound appreciation.

Junior year..was tough. It was full of all nighters and instant food. I was swamped with the workload of 4 AP’s and struggled with balancing time between my studies and my boyfriend of two years. But this is the year that I grew close to Jo Chen and Maddie, two of my best friends today! However, it was also the year that Jo, Maddie, Lucy, and my boyfriend had graduated so the graduation was marked with strong emotions.

This year, graduation means something completely different.

It means five years of going to school in Ojai is coming to a close. It means growth. It means Reika, Sungjin, and Anni. It means Mr. Alvarez’s words of encouragement and Mr. Cooper’s long speeches on integrity. It means Mr. Weidlich running with the lacrosse team and Mrs. Colborn’s team comp announcements. It means Chico’s waffles every Wednesday morning. It means Mrs. Allen’s bake sales and the IOU’s that follow. It means Haldy’s jokes and Eddy’s motorcycle videos and Mr. and Mrs. Boyd’s wonderful singing and camping trips with Mrs. Davis. It is so much.

It kind of makes me want to stay a little longer.

That’s how much I love this place.

Thank you everybody for making this experience what it was. It has been a fabulous 5 years. I loved every minute of it.

The Importance of Competition

It is often said that I am too competitive, and this may very well be the case. However, I make the argument, time and time again, about the importance of competition.

You see, competition is what drives us to greatness. Intrinsic motivation, though powerful, hardly ever has the motivating power of external motivation. This is evolutionary, and has served us well.

Think of all the great thing that have come about due to competition; space travel, new building techniques and all the technology that has come from war.

Competition fuels us, pushing us to work harder and faster. This is how we advance, how we build.

Many people think of competition only regarding sporting events and such, but I know that I am personally motivated by competition in the classroom. I want to be the best in whatever I do.

And there is the key: being the best.

I feel that too many people do not push themselves, they simply sit back and let the world push them around.

I know this is inevitable, that some people will be more motivated by others. Yet I also feel that we have culturally shifted to allow for many more people to act passively while a smaller group controls them.

This “movement” may very well have to do why things are changing so quickly with things like the Occupy Movement and such.

So lets stand up and get motivated, because winning is just so fun.