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The Student Voice of Forest Hills Central

The Central Trend

The Student Voice of Forest Hills Central

The Central Trend

The Student Voice of Forest Hills Central

The Central Trend

The personal experience: growing over the last years

FHC 2024 Prom, Taken by Mikayla Bush in the Grand Rapids Public Museum

When I was younger, it was me against the world. Nothing, in particular, made this my way of thinking; however, a struggle to find people like me was apparent. 

Starting conversations with others was rocky, and my social skills consisted of talking about the weather and how bored I was. Not even that let me fit in, though. 

Granted, I was weird. I liked drawing dragons and playing pretend out in the fields. I could even be seen running around on my hands and feet for a small while. Yeah, things were not stacking up to be good for little Mikayla. 

So what changed?

Now, I could say the generic COVID-19 answer, but, in all truthfulness, it was the moments before the lockdown that changed everything. It was the moment in which I just about lost my best friend over some stupid confusion. 

Sitting in my room for a week after led me to stressed tears about life—what it would look like without her. I was never concerned with the sickness ruining thousands of lives, but with the single person who made me, me. 

The pandemic was just the start of the fissure: a small crack in the foundation of my being. I started freshman year on unsteady ground, not knowing if I was even going to make it out alive. We were all scared and confused. 

I never truly remember if that time in my life happened. 

Between the frayed vision behind Zoom screens and cheap medical masks, I was drowning in a sea of negative emotions. The fissure was a sinkhole with no bottom; I was hanging on for dear life over the edge. I felt there was no escape from the purgatory I placed myself in. I had no one to confide in and no means if finding others. 

Sophomore year finally saw signs of scaffolding precariously stacked up the side. The climb out was long and treacherous, but what fate had in store for me was people—ones I could finally trust. 

It was slow, building my strength back up from the dwindling depths. Sometimes, it felt like I was doomed to fall back. 

We should rejoice in those battles but know that our skills match together to defeat the biggest threat yet.

Junior year was the testing point, stretching my endurance for the hard times sure to come. I battled ruthlessly for a truth I knew was a steadfast effort. To try my best, even if that still landed me on the ground. At least it was something. 

This year was the hardest yet. But not in a way of swimming against the current. Hard in the way that my environment was completely changing. 

Old friends became new, and new like the blood of siblings. The circle has now been knit closer than ever before, and the best part is that it was my doing. 

See, skills don’t come from DNA or discovery; they are gifts given to the soldiers on the battlefield who bear their scars with dignity. We fight our hardest and learn to swing our swords in brand-new ways. 

Maybe those items are not swords but instead tools of creation. Hooks and sticks to crochet or knit, weaving groups of people together. Sometimes, they are whisks to blend the flavors of life into sweet or bitter pastries. They could even be styluses or letters on a keyboard to meld clips of laughter and joy into a whole. 

We should rejoice in those battles but know that our skills match together to defeat the biggest threat yet: growing up. 

My hardest battle is knowing that things will always change no matter the circumstances. Be it happy or sad, I may never see these people again. But I’m happy that they have taught me to be who I am. 

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About the Contributor
Mikayla Bush
Mikayla Bush, Staff Writer
Mikayla is a senior striving for a career in writing and artistry. She takes inspiration from books, media, nature, and even music. Camping, hiking, and running are all favorite pastimes of hers.  She also tries her darndest to deliver strong opinion-based pieces that prompt readers to question anything and everything and hope to even change some minds. What type of books does she want to write? Fantasy, sci-fi, dystopia. I can't read books accounting for the story of some average person. That's called asking a stranger for their life story. What is her favorite place to camp? A state park in the Upper Peninsula, McClain State Park, is just off the shore of Lake Superior. What's her favorite time of the year? Second fall, no not the first where it's still hot with a tiny bit of color. It needs to be cold enough that drinking hot apple cider is life-giving.

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