St. Ignatius
Enya

Chapter One: Who were you?
March 25, 2008 at 6:34 AM, a weird looking baby was born. Their name- Enya Roman. Ever since I can remember I’ve been going on adventures everyday. It hasn’t stopped and it never will. I grew up in a pretty organized household. Not like everything is all neat - there’s things all over the place- but everyone knew what they were supposed to be doing. My siblings and I focused on school and grades, and took care of chores. My parents would work, pay things off, and take care of us. I’ve always been closer to my brother, Wilfredo, but I’m not going to say I’m not close to my sister. I love and dislike them both equally; my brother has just always been there for me. I wouldn’t say I’ve been through a lot, but I’ve for sure gone through tough parts in my life. In kindergarten I was bullied pretty much everyday. I still thank my little 5 year old self for still going to school despite everything going on. It was a rough year at Bret Harte Elementary, but I got through it. The first day of 1st grade though, a lot changed. I got dropped off by my parents and walked to class, getting taunted on the way there. I sat down next to my only friend at the time, Kimberly, and started unpacking my things. Not even 10 minutes after the first class started, I got called to the office saying I was getting picked up. I took my things and walked to the office and got greeted by my mom. She didn’t say much, but just by the way her eyes were glistening I could tell something big was going to happen. She didn’t say anything on the 15 minute drive, but I could tell she was kind of scared. And then we get there. New school. New people. New teachers. New everything. I immediately start crying saying I don’t want to be the only new kid at this school, mainly because I couldn’t make friends easily, and at a new school? It would be awful. I was sure of it. It started off pretty ugly, literally. The first kid I saw was the definition of musty. He wasn’t musty, musty was him. I walked past him following my new principal to my new classroom. My mom was following behind me but the second I got to the door, I started bawling. I knew I was making a scene, but I couldn’t help it. It took a while but eventually I got into the class and made a friend almost instantly. Her name was Miranda. She walked me through the first couple weeks of school and from there, honestly it was the smoothest sail ever. I was making friends everyday, the principal gave an announcement saying they wouldn’t be giving out homework, and I wasn’t getting bullied. It was like that for about 4 years. Then my first huge setback happened. I’m not going to say it just because people might be triggered by it, but because of that event I got diagnosed with depression, anger issues, and anxiety. I’m still working on them but I’ve gotten a lot better. My journey for my mental health and just my well-being since 2019 has been a long and confusing period of time but it’s gotten a lot better. 

Chapter Two: How have you grown as a scholar?
Since my old school never gave any homework, going from that to about an hour of homework every night was a big change and it stressed me out a lot. However, I’ve gotten used to it. It doesn’t stress me out all the time and when I got to FSA, I learned about PLLUSS verbs: persist, love, lead, unite, serve, and seek. I’ve definitely grown to learn more about these verbs and what they all mean. I used to give up really easily but after coming to FSA and meeting new people I keep persisting and don’t give up as easily. I’ve also learned a lot more about love. Growing up I’ve really only stuck to one friend group, but the community at FSA got me out of my comfort zone and has allowed me to make more friends. The ones that have really taught me a lot about love are Sofia, Askari, and Izzie. They’ve also helped me learn more about seeking. They bring me out of my comfort zone and motivate me when I can’t really motivate myself. The PLLUSS verb “lead” didn’t really do much for me until the end of 7th grade. I decided to sign up for the student council and to be a student ambassador and ended up getting both. Doing these helped me connect to the community and make me feel like I was doing something good for the people around me. These also helped me learn more about the PLLUSS verb “unite” and “serve”.

Chapter Three: How have you grown as a person?
Lessons from the outside world can help you a lot, but I feel like you need to experience certain things or else you’ll never fully understand it. Middle school has been such a confusing time, but I’ve also made so many great memories and have met such great people, not just in school but also meeting friends of friends and other people. In sixth grade, I was already going through a lot at home so going to a new school all the way across the city with no one I knew was adding on even more stress. I was probably more distressed than my jeans. I’m going to be 100% honest, my first week sucked. I was waking up at 6:00 and coming back home at 5:10. And on top of that, I had my sports and taking care of myself in general. It was so hard to get used to my new schedule. After that miserable first week though, it started getting easier. My coaches fixed my schedule so I would practice when I actually had time and I was getting most of my homework done at school. At home, I got better at making time for myself and doing more activities in my free time like skating and learning new instruments. It was going good for about 7 months; then COVID happened. Everything changed so fast my brain literally couldn’t process it. I wasn’t practicing anymore, I didn’t have motivation to take care of myself, and my grades were going down. It took about a month to finally start getting my things together and getting myself organized. I remember on the first day that I actually promised myself I would start fixing things. I deep cleaned my room, emailed teachers about my missing homework and how I could get that turned in, and finally found time and energy to start taking care of myself again. It was honestly a lot harder than I expected, but just those few days taught me that I always, no matter what, have to keep going. It still helps me to this day. Right now that I’m writing this, February 23, 2022 I’m going through a little bit of a rough time but I keep reminding myself that I have things to do and have people to prove wrong so I keep going. That might sound corny but genuinely, so much has changed because I just keep telling myself to keep going. Another thing that has been helping me recently is crystals and just the power of the universe. Manifestation is also something I’ve been interested in recently. Thoughts create reality. It’s scary but I’ve been using it to my advantage and have been feeling better. I’ve also surrounded myself with new people this year. When middle school started, I didn’t really know where I was going to go, but these past few years I think I’ve found one of the best friend groups.

Chapter Four: What are your talents/passions?
I can do a really good Stitch impression from Lilo and Stitch. It’s one of my weird talents. Also, I’ve always liked doing sports. I started swimming when I was 2 and did that until I was 10. I also did mixtiso dancing from the ages of 9-11. The sport I’ve been doing recently is boxing. I started when I was 11 and still do it. I don’t do it as much as I used to, but I still love it. I’ve always been active, but quarantine made me a lot more lazy, so I’m trying to get back to the gym more. Even though the pandemic made me stay inside for almost 2 years, I got really into spirituality and have been wanting to learn more about the universe and how it works. Specifically, I am fascinated by the law of attraction. I think it’s really interesting that your thoughts create your reality. I’ve been manifesting a lot and I’ve gotten things like money, food, and good grades. I also think making things a reality happens even quicker when more people are doing it, like protests. I’ve been aware of the BLM movement since 2017 and have supported it since then. It’s a very important topic that should be known by everyone. When the protests started in 2020, I made posters and signs and joined my brother in some protests. My parents were also supportive of the whole movement, just not the way people were dealing with it, so after I went to the first protest they told me to not go any more because it was dangerous. I listened even though I didn’t necessarily agree with them but I had to look at it through their point of view.