On starting: a roadmap through it all

On+starting%3A+a+roadmap+through+it+all

Carina Lin

As I stare out the window beside my desk, I find my mind drifting off to the hundreds of different places I could start.

Perhaps it should be a vivid account of a particularly nostalgic memory, reveling in the absolute chaos of Family Style in seventh period Howler or savoring those deep conversations that bled into the early hours of the morning on our MUN Boston trip. Sure, there were grueling long nights and lots of work, but they only made the good times like these more precious.

Or, maybe I should attempt to coherently express the countless thank yous that friends, family and Northwood staff deserve for being there, for inspiring and for everything in between. I am sincerely and eternally grateful for our time together.

Then again, I could opt to plug in an inspiring quote and share a bit of humble advice that I’d like to pass along—something about how that “bad grade” on a test is definitely not going to be the end of the world, that you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take and that, you know, it’s good to live a little and enjoy the little things. While I was never one to make inspirational quotes, there’s a first for everything: when things get tough, you can only have the last laugh if you let yourself breathe first. That’s my reminder to myself (and to you if you need it) to take a step back, put things into perspective and not let stress get overwhelming.

So I’d like to think that I’ve opted for a sprinkle of everything in a happy compromise—a fitting conclusion to my four years of diplomacy in MUN, no?

My journey through high school, much like the one I took to get to this point in the article, has included a few detours, but it is also one that I have traveled with the hope of fondly looking back on it.

It seems like just yesterday that I was nervously checking the back of my planner, my fingertips gliding over the laminated campus map as I traced my intended path to each class over and over the night before the first day of freshman year. Admittedly, it was a futile attempt to prepare myself for what was to come, but I think that’s part of the magic of all things new: you never quite know how it will turn out, but by the end you’ll know more.

For instance, I learned that no solid and dotted line schematic was ever going to save me from the seemingly identical, endlessly perplexing parallel bridges connecting the 900s building to the 1400s and 1100s buildings respectively. Although in my feeble defense, most of the buildings are made of the same Irvine homeowner tan stucco.

But if you have ever felt or currently feel as lost as freshman me (physically or otherwise), I can assure you that while you will struggle, you also will find your way. I certainly did and I’ve made it all the way to New York without a roadmap, which I think is quite the achievement for a directionally challenged person such as myself.

Perhaps this is just my long winded way of saying that wherever you start and wherever you end up, I hope you enjoy your journey just as much as I did. Remember to enjoy the little window arts and flowers along the way.

P.S. Join the Model United Nations (MUN) club!