Eternally thankful for TCT (and Lady Fate)


Lynlee Derrick

Reminiscing on my long brown hair.

My community has unintentionally been built from, to quote Bob Ross, “happy little accidents,” and The Central Trend has been no exception for me.

I don’t remember much from class selection for 9th grade in the dim computer lab in middle school. That might just be from how anxious I was, how my hands clicked my pen over and over again against my will as I was walked through the process of high school class selection, how I was in complete shock from the impending reality and responsibility high school was going to bring. But despite never being one for English classes in middle school—I refused to take Challenge Language Arts despite the advice of teachers just to avoid writing—I ironically wrote down Writing for Publication (WFP), and then I plugged it in the computer not really knowing why.

My friends were all in band, so I didn’t expect to find any in a “random” writing class. I knew nothing about teachers at the high school, so I didn’t expect to have one of my favorites teach the class. I was obnoxiously fixated on the idea of becoming a doctor—I had watched Grey’s Anatomy one too many times—so I didn’t expect to ever willingly give up an hour in my tight schedule to a class outside of STEM.

I didn’t expect that I would continue past just the semester-long WFP. I didn’t expect that I would join The Central Trend. I didn’t expect to write this often. I didn’t expect that I would become one of the editors. I didn’t expect that I would grow to love it.

So much came from my lapse in thinking in that dim, concave computer lab that I could have never predicted.

Fundamentally, I’ve changed; now I see that “lapse” as an act of Fate’s funny need to set me on course—something I’ll forever be indebted to her for.

Without her intervening, I wouldn’t be here in room 139 writing my heart and soul onto a page in the rawest way I can. I wouldn’t have this—this newspaper, this outlet, this unlocked passion, this understanding of who I am and who I hope to be. I wouldn’t have met some of the most loving and understanding people in my life. I wouldn’t be editing alongside one of my best friends and my platonic soulmate Abby Wright.

I wouldn’t be me.

She has led me to my growth, and if you don’t believe in Fate, call it an accident. But no matter how you view it—it is my story after all—I’ve found my place here at FHC. My community has been built from the words on this site, from the 202 stories labeled “Mine” on the back of the site, from the late-night texts and plotting between me and Abby.

The beginning of my journey here may not have been by my own hand, but nonetheless, I’m grateful. 

Grateful for Fate leading me here, grateful for the site always giving me a writer’s high, grateful for these editors’ columns giving me the space to explore my story, grateful for my community believing in me, grateful for my development finally reflecting my hopeful soul, and grateful for words staying with me through it all—even when I didn’t want them.