Monday, January 8, 2018

Summer and Fall by: Spencer Hill

Hello everyone! If you’ve been keeping with my blog for a while, then you know this is the first time I’ve posted in a LONG time. The last post on my blog, in fact, was at the end of my 2016-2017 school year. Naturally, I thought the first order of business on the new blog would be to fill in the gap and let you know what’s been going on in my life; All the way from Summer Vacation to now.

Nothing particularly special happened over the summer for me. I wasn’t really thinking about school and its problems. I was simply focused on having fun. I was signed up for way less summer camps, so I had lots of time to be lazy and hang out with my buds. The few summer camps or vacations that got me out of the house turned out fantastic as well. The most notable ones were XC (Cross Country) Camp and my Ocean City, Maryland trip.

At XC Camp, I bunked with fellow #bowtieboy Christian Sporre. Between all the running and workouts, I played volleyball, soccer, and got to meet a ton of cool new people. I had a great week and I can’t wait to go back next year. Christian Sporre also invited #bowtieboy Joseph O’Such and me to stay at his family’s beach house in Ocean City. We would spend the whole day at the beach boogieboarding and playing frisbee then follow it with a night of Mario kart. I’m grateful for the experience and that Christian’s family invited me.

When summer inevitably ended, I was extremely stressed and anxious about my sophomore year. I had a great freshman year, but I knew that this year was going to be tough. When I got home from the first day of school, I was so relieved. I’d actually understood what was going on and my teachers seemed very helpful and kind. I flew through the first couple weeks of school, putting in little effort. “10th grade isn’t gonna be so bad.”, I told myself. Then my first quizzes started coming back. The grades were far below what I was used to and far below what I’d wanted. I had no idea what to do. I thought I’d been putting in the time, but I failed to realize that the work habits that made me successful had gone down the drain. None of my classes made sense to me and I couldn’t, for the life of me, buckle down and put the work in.

Then NCTE swooped in and gave me a well-needed mental break. On the Thursday morning that I left for Saint Louis, my brain had completely switched gears. I was so glad to be back doing something that I understood and had confidence in. Amidst all the chaos (and fun) of NCTE, I felt so relaxed. I got to go out to nice dinners each night, hang out with my friends if there was time, and have confidence in what I was doing! (And go to the city museum; that could be a blog of its own) It was so exciting to meet the people whose books I’ve read or Twitter discussions I’d been in. NCTE was really important for me mentally, as I got to return with new books, restored confidence and work ethic, and some great videos from the city museum (I will definitely attach those somewhere, if you are interested)

When I got back from NCTE, the first quarter of the school year was almost over. I finally made an effort to get my act together. I did my work, paid attention, and got help from people who knew what was happening. Although my work ethic and time management are still below where they were, I’m making an effort to improve. I’m slowly getting a grip on everything.

That was most of the important things in my life since the end of the 2016-2017 school year; And overall, I think I’ve been doing very well and have had a great time doing it. I hope you have all had a magnificent almost-year filled with lots of fun and important landmarks. I’m going to be blogging more frequently now, so I won’t have to do another recap blog like this and I can start thinking more deeply about school.

1 comment:

  1. Spencer,
    I'm so glad that you loved the City Museum and that #NCTE17 was a place where your life seemed to click back into place. Seeing the #BowTieBoys in action several times, affirmed my belief that more student voice and choice is always necessary. Great post and good luck with your renewed focus on school in 2018!