Waking up that early morning in late August, I didn’t know what I was going into, it being the first day of middle school. All I knew was that I would be starting a new chapter in my life. As I walked in those doors for the first time, I didn’t know anyone there, other than some vaguely familiar faces. Nevertheless, my fear gradually was forgotten through the first few days of middle school as I realized how welcoming and friendly this community would be. I was welcomed in with wide and open arms of kindness and respect, and I quickly made many of my best friends here. Throughout the years, we have all changed, all ready for the next chapter in our lives, and all starting to find who we are, even though it hasn’t been easy.
In life, we do many things. Some of which we wish we had never done and could forget. Some we wish we could remember forever and replay many times in our heads. But either way, all of these things make each person who they are, and end up shaping us in every way. I know that in our minds, some individuals want to reverse some of these moments. But if we did this, we would not be the people we are today. Each memory, each thing we do, carves and shows us more of who we are. They each give us more personality and insight to who we are becoming as people. Some have already found their diamond, while others are still working to dig it out and bring it to life. And when we find these diamonds, we need to nourish and care for them, not put them back in the shadows. So, my advice to everyone here is to just live. Make mistakes. Make wonderful memories. Make yourself happy with the way you are. But never change or second guess who you are and where you’re going. Trust that everything will turn out okay and just enjoy life and where it is taking you.
Graduation is an exciting time. It is both an ending and a the start of a new beginning. It’s been a long road for each and every one of us, but I know that everyone here today has become a better
individual because of the magnificent staff and teachers who reside here and all the support we have been able to gain, both from our parents and friends. They have helped us with so much and I know that when we soon graduate and go onto bigger and better things, we will remember the people who have helped us on this journey and never gave up on us. These teachers haven’t just taught us how to connect to our books, construct math formulas, build hypotheses, and overall become middle school students. They’ve done much more than that. Each year we have been at Oak Valley, we have made many connections with our instructors, and through these relations, we have been taught many life lessons that will be remembered. Our parents and best friends have been those rocks throughout it all. Even though all the ups and downs of the “middle school rollercoaster” we have relied on them to keep us going. All these people had never stopped believing in us, and it has made a big and important impact on us all.
Middle school went by fast. Just like everyone around us said it would. So I hope that each one of you cherishes these precious moments we have spent together as a class because no matter how much you may want to, you can’t come back to middle school. There is a tough and hard truth we have to face ; everything eventually ends. As much as I might have looked forward to this day, I’ve always tried to prevent endings. The last day of summer before school starts, the final chapter of a good book, the falling out with a close friend. But, endings are inevitable. Today is one of those days for all of us as we say goodbye to our middle school journey. Today we say our goodbyes as we start the new chapter in our lives. As our childhood friend Winnie the Pooh said, “how lucky am I to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.”