Self-discovery important as any course

Self-discovery important as any course

by Zach JamesStaff Writer

Excuse me while I try not to grow up too quickly.

Being a freshman here at Simpson College has opened up new doors for me, which I am excited to walk through. However, being a little kid sometimes doesn’t want to go away from me. When I got here, I was scared about moving on and starting a new chapter in my life. However, I don’t have a machine or device that stops time. If anyone does own one, may I borrow it, for say, an eternity? The fact of the matter is, no one does. It’s one of those things all of us have to go through. It pained me to see my family walk away knowing I could not go back home.

Two months later, here I am making the most out of my collegiate experiences. Looking back over the first two months, I have discovered myself more frequently here in Indianola than in any point in my life. For example, I have found tests and studying are at another level compared to high school. I was gliding along the ice gracefully, but once I found myself here, I fell harder than a sorority girl on a usual Saturday night.

I’m not telling you new information. Although repetition is a useful tool, I don’t need to elaborate on my adjustments. However, it has shaped me more and more and is making me stronger.

This whole college experience is. I get to test myself on a daily basis, but that is nothing new for me at all. You see, in my early childhood, I passed the most important test I will ever take. I have cerebral palsy, which basically describes a group of permanent disorders of the development of movement and posture. Anyway, I was paralyzed from the waist down until after my fourth birthday.

That didn’t stop me.

I went on to have a very healthy high school career. In fact, one of the activities I excelled in was cross country.

Sure, I had my times where I didn’t think I could do it. I’ve had countless times where these legs were tired. Simply, I wanted to give up. Relax and not worry about getting hurt on a regular basis. On the other hand, I knew I couldn’t give up. I didn’t as a young lad when I was paralyzed; I needed to walk. Therefore, I needed to continue through the pain, because the term “giving up” is not in this person’s dictionary.

Today while at Simpson, I feel like giving up. My grades won’t show up on the Dean’s List. I could hunker down in a hole and just hand everything, head home, and frankly, be a coward. I don’t want that for myself. Giving up is cowardly, and I have gone through too much to hand in my chips now.

I use this message as frequently as I can, because I know nothing can let me down. I can do anything I set my mind to, and so can each and every one of you. When you have a test you think you’re going to fail, just stand back, and take a deep breath and smile. Everything could be worse; impossible is nothing.

Just don’t forget to live life to the fullest as well. Sure, college is another chapter toward adulthood, but it is perfectly fine to pull back the reins. I intend to do exactly that.

So, excuse me if I try not to grow up too quickly.