This moment – the beginning


Katarina Lalic

My best friend took this photo of me on a hike the other day. I feel like it symbolizes a beginning of some kind.

Hi. My name is Natalie.

If you read The Central Trend with any regularity, you’ve probably read an article or two of mine. For the last three years, I’ve been publishing an average of three articles every two weeks under my staff profile. 

During these last three years, that staff profile has undergone enormous change through small details—every new article, each telling a story in some form; every bio update, where I felt I’d really captured my essence in about a hundred words; every change in position, from Staff Writer to Marketing Manager to Print Managing Editor to this: Editor in Chief.

I’ve known I wanted this since my freshman year; as I blossomed and bloomed over the course of that year, so did my dream to someday lead this newspaper. 

And now here it is, the future I’ve been envisioning since I was fourteen. Here I am, a person who has overcome things that fourteen year old me wouldn’t have believed.

But every time that I try to grasp the sheer beauty of this present reality, I’m completely consumed with everything outside this moment. 

I watch this future play out in my mind, see all the ways it could fall apart, dread it’s inevitable end, and begin to panic over what comes next. I become enamored with recreating the moments that have passed, romanticize what used to be, and resent the beauty that is because it’s failed to be something it was never going to be. 

I’m chronically guilty of becoming so enthralled in the whirlwind of my thoughts that I fail to be present in the moment. I’ve been guilty of it for so long I think it’s all I know. But over the last few months, my therapist’s words have echoed in my mind: slow down

I’ve realized that slowing down is entirely vital to the process of rebuilding my life on stable footing, a task I’ve shouldered over these past few months. 

And slowing down is endlessly multifaceted; it means trying new things to focus myself on the moment, learning to lower my expectations, letting tomorrow’s problems be tomorrow’s problems. It means accepting that I don’t even know all that slowing down entails.

But I’ve decided to prioritize it, at least for the moments that are in front of me. I’m sick of missing what is because I’m focused on what has been or what could be. I want to be in this moment, in every moment, as it is. 

So that’s my Editor’s Column. This moment as it is. 

Our Editor’s Columns will all look different this year—mine, Emma’s, and Avery’s. We’re on this journey together, ridiculously excitedly so, but what we hope will be the strength behind our leadership is our differences. 

What we share—among many things, including a penchant for impromptu slushie adventures—is something beyond a love for writing, a voice within it.

I’ve treasured my words because they’ve allowed me to tell stories, journeys. Now, I’m embracing the power that they hold for me. I’m depending on them to guide this journey, tell this story, the one of this year and the moments that comprise it. 

Every moment as it is.