Sophmore Year

High School Round Two.

This year was one of struggle and challenge in all places of my life. But that’s what I’m guessing all of life is. Struggle and challenge with a sprinkle of ease and achievement.

In all aspects, I’ve been putting myself through an overdramatic hell. Most of that was done in the first semester, truly one of the rockiest semesters I’ve ever faced. (I can feel the dreaded Junior year laughing in the dark).

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Cast B of Clue: On Stage

First Semester:

Finally, sophomore year. No longer a freshie and with a total of 1 grade-A year of experience in high school, I walked in with the confidence that I had this thing down. Nothing could surprise me, nothing could throw me off. I would soon come to find out that I was terribly incorrect, for I had absolutely none of this thing down.

The first semester of my Sophomore year was filled with a lot of firsts. The first year with the advanced drama department, the first year in an AP class, and my first sort-of job. All of those add-ins overthrew my entire system, and soon I was so unorganized that my entire structure crumbled.

Rehearsals swallowed my whole schedule, due dates rushed past me faster than I could meet them, and all of the time spent working at the cafeteria left very little time to spend with my friends. I felt like I didn’t have time to breathe. Not to mention, we moved in with my grandparents, so alone time became nothing but a joke.

I was overwhelmed, and instead of taking at least a day to just organize myself and pull together a functioning schedule, I kept running on empty, praying that it would all be over soon. (And honestly, looking at all of this from the standpoint of actually being two days away from the end of all the craziness of this year, I can’t help but laugh at that girl. So stressed and dramatic. Pobrecita.)

I started so many friendships off on the wrong foot, I let stress and my lack of time management destroy my grades, and I let the friendships I had weaken and disappointed the people I loved. I was a hot mess, and it showed well.

Soon came the show, and it ended, but my stress did not. I gained more time, but I lost doing something that I loved- at least until the spring musical. I had also lost my biggest excuse, and being on the edge of Thanksgiving break, I left the job of mustering the motivation to pick up my grades for the second quarter.

Once we came back, I was the most motivated I had been…for the next week, anyways. After that I got lazy and my grades slipped back to their former shame. It was the lowest my GPA had ever been.

After the semester ended, I picked myself up and plopped into winter break festivities. I hosted the drama Christmas/birthday party for one of our castmates and survived the night with Loteria, elephant exchange, and only one incident of awkwardness. Whoop whoop.

Family parties passed and Christmas cheer was attempted. Sooner or later, the looming gloom of the second semester neared and we were all forced to return to school.

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Raquel and I at the Drama Christmas Party

 

Second Semester:

I walked into school and sat at my group’s table with a new batch of fresh-baked motivation muffins. Actually, it was a raspberry lemon tart, but that’s beside the point.

The night before we returned, I baked all sorts of sweets to pair with apologies to all of the people I had angered and disappointed during the first semester. I made the raspberry lemon tart for the drama room, whom I’d overwhelmed with literal drama and tension because of some silly beef with another castmate. I apologized for all of the unnecessary stress and they seemed to happily accept. One weight lifted, another few to go.

I took nutrition and lunch off that day to give my friends their choice of cookies or brownies and an apology for being so absent the past few months. They snacked as I spoke, and we caught up on all that we missed. Everything felt lighter, and the world looked brighter.

The year went on and with a vow to fix my GPA, I studied like never before. People around me became more supportive because I was a better friend, and I felt unstoppable. Around March, just as we had begun rehearsals for Urinetown, I decided that talk was enough and that I needed to act.

I talked so much about wanting to get to Broadway, wanting to see New York, but I had never actually done anything about it. So, I found AMDA’s program for musical theatre, applied, and got in with a talent-based scholarship. I was ecstatic, especially because I’d been so nervous about the acceptance and expense since I’d hit submit on that application.

Rehearsals continued and I was discovering new ways to bring Penny to life every single day. I was rushing past due dates, studying every second I had, and working with all of my heart towards accomplishing my goals for the rest of the school year. One by one, I ticked them off the list.

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Myself as Penelope Pennywise and Odin Bustos as Bobby Strong in Urinetown

As I was speeding by in pure light and joy,  I was abruptly halted by a big, heavy envelope that came in the mail from an organization called the “National Student Leadership Conference.” I ripped open the package and found out that I’d been invited to partake in their Musical Theatre program at Fordham University in NEW YORK CITY!!

I read the information over, and over, and over again, making sure I was reading this right. I would attend musical theatre workshops, see Broadway and off-Broadway shows, speak to their teams, and stay in Fordham’s Dorms, all in New York City, AND for LESS money than AMDA’S program.

I went online and triple checked the information, and then went to go speak to my parents of how badly I NEEDED to go. I made sure to emphasize that it was about a thousand dollars cheaper, in New York City, and overall a much better experience for me to have.

They discussed it for a few hours and came back with exactly what I wanted to hear: YES. But on one condition. They were willing to pay for the trip and the ticket for something so worthwhile, but I needed to sacrifice something too. That something became improv, the club I’d been a co-hostess for since the beginning of my freshman year.

In a heartbeat, I said yes. Would I miss the wonderful people that I had strong bonds with? Of course, a million times a day. But this was the opportunity of a lifetime for me, a chance to taste what I’d be doing with the rest of my life. I needed to take it.

After I told absolutely everybody about this exciting thing to come, I got to work on the scholarship by asking my director for a recommendation letter and sending in an essay about why I thought I deserved it. It all worked in my favor and said scholarship took care of a good part of the tuition.

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Paige, Me, Chloe, Camryn, and Esteban on Drama Disney Day

I stopped working at nutrition to spend time with my friends, started setting money aside to spend in New York, and got my grades up to where I became more comfortable and relaxed with where they fit in my schedule.

The weeks flew by and the shows went well. The AP exam came then went and another weight fell off my shoulders.

Everything started to work itself out, and for the first time in a while, I felt like I could breathe.

Three Days Before Summer (Today):

Now I’m tasked with studying for finals, one tomorrow and three on Tuesday. Only a few more days until the beginning of a promising summer.

With that comes so many blog post ideas, and a whole new schedule. But for now, we wait for summer, and then New York, and then Junior year. But thank you all so much for following me for the past few months.

Hopefully, you will all enjoy what I have in store. I can’t wait for you to see the rest!

Until then, goodnight! I hope to bring you something great soon, and I can’t wait for round three. What a great round it should be!

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Me, Natalie, and Anthony (the Sad Chumps) in Chem

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Hi guys! Thanks so much for reading my blog post!

I just wanted to thank you all so much for helping me out and supporting me for the past couple of months. This blog has always been something that I was connected to but never had the ideas or motivation to keep going. But with so much going on lately, I’ve wanted a place to document every step toward it and share it all with you! So from the very center of my soul, thank you so very much for following me along.

As usual, like and comment if you please, I’d love to learn about you and your thoughts on my writing or my blog so far! If you have any thoughts on this post or have any suggestions for what you’d like to see from me in the future, please let me know! I’d love to hear from you all!

Thank you all so much, and I’ll be back on Tuesday with a last-day-of-school photo-filled post, and then on Wednesday for a Summer Plan update and site change!

Follow my social media for constant updates of the site and I’ll see you guys on Tuesday!

Until then!

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Kate Santos

 

One Comment Add yours

  1. this is so cute! i luv!

    Liked by 1 person

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