I never imagined myself publishing anything in Eastside, too afraid that someone might find a typo in my writing, disagree with my opinions, or somehow critique my character. Then again, I could not have expected to achieve most of the accomplishments for East which I am most proud. As a rising freshman, I had only played ultimate Frisbee a few times in middle school. Even after deciding that it was one of my favorite sports to play freshman year, I was still too hesitant to co-find an ultimate Frisbee club, just in case some classmates did not have the same appreciation for the game. Posting neon orange flyers for the first meeting two years later was a nerve-wracking experience. In retrospect, however, it was also the most encouraging. It turned out that some people did question or ridicule my concept, but even more joined what is now a successful club.
High school should therefore involve so much more than just academic preparation for college, a job, or the armed forces. After all, four years of high school is just as long as four years of college, so spend them doing what you want to do, and not what you think others want you to do. Don’t let negative peer pressure cause you to underestimate your ability to achieve your goals or to wait until the last issue of Eastside of your senior year to finally express your ideas.
Granted, I probably wouldn’t have listened to my own advice as an underclassman. Some people may not agree with my perspective now, either, but the fact that it should not – and does not – really bother me anymore is one of the best lessons high school has taught me.