May 23, 2004

"The more things change, the more they stay the same!" --NPP

It is a universal truth that change is a part of life. Seeing how far along we have come in life and looking back at our kindergarten, elementary and middle school years often brings a childlike smile to our faces. Reflecting back to the days that are long gone and thinking about all the crazy things that we did is always a time worth spent.

The first day of kindergarten is a big leap for a child. Escaping the familiar surroundings of the house and stepping into a world which is new and where everybody present is basically a stranger is a huge change in one’s life. The new atmosphere gives the child some space to grow in, to experience new things and start becoming his own person. It also gives that little kid an understanding of what people are like and how different they are from him and all those he had came in contact with in the past.

By starting out school, not only did that kid come in contact with the world but also saw his own family from a different point of view. Do you remember that guy or girl you used to play with during recess? The one who was just like the other kids but became known as your boyfriend or girlfriend? Yeah, that one! So you must also remember how your older siblings and parents used to laugh at that silly joke, often making your cheeks go red. Yes, now it sounds silly, but back then didn’t you get conscious and acted in the most foolish manner possible. Right then and there we got a taste of what life was going to be like in the future. The same type of thing happens in high school also.

The change that I described above was just a little piece of the pie. Many people go through huge changes in their lives. These rotate their world upsides down. Sometimes, changing their view towards life.

When we look around, within our school, we see a diverse group. A good percentage of students in our school are of different ethnic backgrounds. A large number of these people are FOBs, Fresh Off The Boat, meaning they recently entered the nation and are not exactly used to the customs here. That, my friends, is a massive change in an individual’s life.

Leaving one’s homeland, the place of their birth, is really hard. What is even harder is entering a place where every face is a new one. Where you are just born, but where others had been living since forever. Christina Baldwin once said, “Change is the constant, the signal for rebirth, the egg of the phoenix.”

Fitting in is a big issue amongst American teenagers. FOBs get a complete new view towards life the day they enter their new school. Many people are friendly but there are also large majorities that ignore the new students. If you know what I am talking about you must have seen two groups of people around at school and your community – FOBs and ABs (American Born). People, having the same backgrounds, choose to be with different people because they do not want to get “embarrassed.” They do not even talk to each other!

The results are that many people grow up not caring about others, doing only what is good for them. In the past they may have been the social guy or gal of the town, but they changed. In other cases, people become more mature and open-minded. Looking at the same problem from different points of view, while understanding all the viewpoints.

Although, sometimes change can ruin a person’s life, it is often for good. A number of times people find out their strengths and weaknesses. Getting to know oneself is always good. This way we can come over our weak points and polish our plus points.

So, whenever you see something happening in your life, which may lead to a change, try to accept it with a smile. The change will occur, no matter what. So, why not enter the new age with an open heart rather than a closed mind with thoughts in the past.

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