Sunday, 29 June 2014

Year One

Oh, how the time has passed us... I can't believe it's already been a year since I first sat down and decided to start a blog. As dramatic as it sounds, this blog really has changed my life. The thing is, I'm more than thankful to have such a busy and exciting high school life, but the stress really does build up. My school is full of students who excel in academics, sports and overall community involvement and leadership. Needless to say, life is busy.

That being said, to all those who find their way onto my blog and don't have one yourself, I highly recommend that everyone starts their own personal blog. Write whatever you want on it and ignore the number of hits you get. (Getting deep again) In today's society, so many different rules and 'social norms' dictate everything you do. In English class, for example, when was the last time you ever had a choice on what to write about? When was the last time your teacher stood in front of the class and told you guys to hand in any short story you want to write? By having my own blog, I obtained a creative outlet where no one can tell me what I can and cannot say.

Okay, I'm done with all the motivation now. So, I thought I'd start a little tradition. For each of my "blog birthday" posts, I'll update all of you on five prominent events to take place in the past year. So let's get this started.

JUNE 2013 • JUNE 2014

Student Senate
Taking on the role of student senator was more exciting and eye-opening than I could have ever imagined. I was able to become friends with so  many amazing people from different schools who I would have never even had the chance to meet without this amazing opportunity. We were a quirky bunch, but I can't even begin to comprehend how we have become such a close bunch solely based on our monthly meetings. I can't wait to see the hard work of the student senate and, more importantly, our two student trustees, make a big difference in the way Student Voice is perceived throughout the board.

Leadership Camp
Leadership Camp was a very unique experience for me this year. I'm going to be straight up honest. The student who are usually chosen to be leaders at camp are part of the so-called "popular" group in high school... which I am not a part of. My friend and I were fully prepared to be outcasts during leader bonding events and such. Now, however, I look back on camp and I can only see the positives effects it had on my school life. I met some of the nicest grade 12's and grade 11's I never would have talked to in the hallways, those who were charismatic and weren't blinded by the labels students earn in high school. Of course, I'm also thankful I finally confirmed some of my suspicions and learned who to stay away from at all costs, haha. Overall though, my school is very well known to be extremely accepting towards everyone, and through this experience I was happy to be able to further confirm that fact. 

Senior Band
We had a very rough start to band this year. We slacked off, we didn't practice, we weren't working together very well and we just sounded horrible. However, there is one unique aspect that brought our band together. It was the overwhelming shame we would feel when disappointing our conductor, though he never acted disappointed in front of us. Needless to say, we started having sectionals, we (hopefully 'we' :P) practiced our songs at home, we bonded over a weekend-long band retreat and we, above all, became a team. By the time our festival (or competition) came along, we definitely were not the best band in terms of skill, however we did become passionate and linked as a team. I like to think that this is how we ended up winning Most Outstanding Concert Band out of all 114 bands who performed at the festival. I guess this really taught me how much of a difference simply loving what you do can make. The funny thing is, this was such a big accomplishment, but no one in school cared. But let's be honest, who needs haters? ;)

Relay For Life
I have never been so exhausted and stressed out before in my life. Out of all the leadership roles I've ever taken on, this was the first one where I was completely in charge with little teacher guidance. I spent twelve hours running around with some of my amazingly dedicated friends who were a part of my committee. We had to organize an activity every 30 minutes for the entire day. This meant gathering materials, walking all over the property recruiting participants, holding the activity itself and keeping order at the same time. In the end, our school raised $96 818.39 for the Canadian Cancer Society. We exceeded our goal by more than $20 000. What did I learn from this? Leadership is not about recognition, but the results which come out from your hard work. Me and my committee may have worked our butts off for months, but sometimes, you don't get recognition. Instead, people tend to notice the negatives. But that's what being a leader is about isn't it? People will always see the worst, and when things go well, they won't notice. Instead of being bitter about this, pat yourself on the back, celebrate everything you  know you helped achieve and learn from other people's criticisms, that is what being a leader is about.

After 2 years of being a part of Student Council, it has become one of the biggest parts of my school life. I've met so  many students from all different grades, and I have become friends with people I never would have talked to in the hallway without the confidence I obtained from joining Student Council. I'm ecstatic to share with all of you that I will be one of the co-presidents in my school next year. The competition was hard and the campaigning period was highly stressful. In the end, I gained a little faith in humanity. I may not be in the "cool" group in school, but people somehow did not choose to only consider that factor and my relentless hard work for the past two years has paid off. If anyone from CB is reading this, I hope to make you proud next year!

So, that's a little summary of my year for those of you who were curious... for those of you who weren't, I'll be posting a lot more frequently now. I should actually have a 2014 Blogger Challenge post coming out tomorrow. You may have noticed that I went on a little bit of a sudden hiatus because of exam season, but what better way than to end it on my blog's birthday? I'll be seeing you very very soon, and I can't wait to see what next year is going to bring!