Senior Perspective: Michael Bruce

To make a summary of the greatest moments of my time at Cherry Hill High School East about anything other than its track & field and cross country teams would be a crime; for the past four years, they have given me life and I hopefully have given something back to them. For as much as the lifestyles gave, however, they took; I write without owing track & field or cross country anything.

In spite of injuries every single year of my high school running career, I can’t say that I am disappointed with my career. I can say that I am disappointed with my times; I can say that I am disappointed with some of my self-injurious decisions of the ever-present past; I can’t say that I am disappointed with how much I’ve learned. I learned how to recover from the lowest of the depths, how to keep a positive attitude over an 11 month period of no racing, how to stay sane while spending more time training than sleeping, but most importantly, how to lead. In a sport in which so much can go wrong and that did go wrong for me, leadership begins with the example set in pursuing recovery, examples that further fuel the running addiction; I could even go so far as to say that the greatest morals of leadership came from addiction: the masochistic addiction to running. Just as that addiction may have formed the basis of my career, it forms the basis of the entire Cherry Hill East distance running team. For what other reason would one want to run up to fifteen miles a day other than because it satisfies cravings? But the difficulty in managing addiction is such that it can be uncontrollable; from such ardor came my multifarious injuries. Since I arrived at East in 2009, the Cherry Hill East Distance team, with whom I will always most closely belong despite the fact that I now pole vault due to injury sake, has blossomed into a perennial competitor that I could never have imagined. I solely hope that my harshly-learned knowledge, my torturous workouts, my constant health harangues, and leadership helped someone. But just as track and cross have made me who I am, it is time to move on, to allow another, a freshman, to start my very same satisfying career from its beginning. Go Cougars and What Wall!