Third person narratives and where she stands now


Chris McCarty

A picture of me from several years ago when I went with my aunt and uncle to pick up their new dog

My parents used to tell me “Sophie stories” every night before bed.

They’d crawl into my bed on either side of my small frame and tell me stories about a girl named Sophie who always seemed to have days similar to mine. I’d occasionally call them out on their mischief, but they’d deny my claims before continuing whatever story they were in the middle of.

I’d clamp onto both of their hands as they’d go to leave, begging them for just one more Sophie story, and they’d settle back in for just one more Sophie story.

If I had spent my day sprawled out on the trampoline in my backyard, Sophie would also have spent her time under the sun’s bright rays, her calves would be sore from bouncing. Sophie and I both shared an affinity for the blue and purple popsicles that were kept in our respective fridges on humid, summer days.

Now, Sophie’s rounding the edge of adulthood. She lives in a constant epicenter of change. And like her AP Lit teacher says, senior year is a cycle of ups and downs, and there have been a lot of ups recently. 

Sophie got into her top college this past weekend. 

Her acceptance letter was sitting in her inbox, and her heart raced as she opened it. There was a confetti GIF at the top, and that’s all she had skimmed before she had thrown her covers off and raced downstairs to her parents. Her eyes were glued to the carpeted steps in front of her as she took them two at a time and as her hands brushed across the wooden banister. 

Her evening was a blur of teary smiles and warm hugs and congratulatory texts from friends and family members that knew how hard she’d worked for this. 

All her sleepless nights spent on stories she only half-loved and columns like this that she ripped herself apart to write were slowly becoming worth it.

A few days later, she found out she had been offered direct admission into their media school. 

This email was greeted with a warm hug from her mom while they both cried on her living room couch. They cried for the last four years of hard work and the next four years of hard work to come. They cried for dreams that were finally coming together. They cried for a future full of her own words. 

All her sleepless nights spent on stories she only half-loved and columns like this that she ripped herself apart to write were slowly becoming worth it. The seemingly permanent bags under her eyes weren’t for nothing—they’re a reminder of her hard work.  

Sophie just received her second paycheck from her real-life journalism job. 

She works for two local magazines and is getting a taste of her future that is to come. She’s gathering the experience she needs to go into the field after college—a field that requires the best pieces of herself: her drive, her work ethic, and her words. She’s hoping for a desk that she doesn’t sit behind very often and a city full of busy people with stories to tell, stories that are of a worthy caliber for novels. She wishes to write the kind of articles people carefully cut out and tape to their bedroom walls. 

It’s slowly all coming together. 

She’s no longer the little girl who spent her afternoons on trampolines and on the tops of bunk beds. She spends her days writing scholarship essays and stories for this site and for her job. The tears shed over the past four years and the smiles and the anger and the laughter are all finally worth it. 

Sophie’s happy. And that’s all that matters.