Maddy’s Struggles

My dear roommate Maddy was cleaning out her things yesterday when she stumbled upon her college application essays. After thirty minutes of my begging her to let me read them, she finally capitulated. This little gem appeared in her “additional comments” section:

“I have attended Loretto High School in Sacramento for the last four years. However, I have lived in Auburn, a town in the Sierra Nevada foothills nearly an hour’s drive away from Sacramento all the while. The classes I have taken at Loretto have been challenging and stimulating, but having a two-hour long commute everyday has strengthened me the most as a person. For the first three years, I would try to find a comfortable position to either to my homework or doze off. Besides suffering through “the bus years” as I call them, I have had to wake up an hour and a half earlier than my peers living in Sacramento, after arriving home an hour later than them the day before (and even later during tennis season). As a result of this strain, I have developed fortitude. Waking up before the sun has been the greatest test of my character, but I wouldn’t have it any other way, because I am all the more prepared for college because of it.”

It is now undeniably clear why Maddy was admitted with honors and scholarships to UC Santa Barbara. What incredible adversity she has overcome! What White Girl Problems she has triumphed over! Not only did she “suffer through the bus years,” but she survived them—a tell-tale sign that she would do great at any top-ranking university! She didn’t fall asleep every night to the sound of gun shots; she didn’t raise her younger siblings single-handedly while her Pa was out drinking. Instead, her “strain” was internal, a true battle to figure out what to do with herself during an hour’s ride. Maddy, you inspire us every day. Keep hurdling those obstacles and developing that fortitude; you’re a better person for it.

(P.S. Maddy gave permission for this post, as she hopes that her story will inspire others.)