Senior Column: Ava Belchez

Ava Belchez, Copy Editor

Is it more important where your roots are or where you bloom?
As my senior year and time on the Miegan nears its end, this is a question that I have thought long about.
Like most seniors, I’ve wondered where I will find myself in the next few years and it has brought me back to where I started.
On the first day of freshman year, I walked into a school full of completely unfamiliar faces. I was the only person in my class that had come from my grade school, and as someone who was not the best at conversing with new people, I was not looking forward to four years in this incompatible environment. I kept my head down in the hallways, looking at my feet as they took me straight from class to class without stopping to talk to anyone.
Freshman year, I knew I loved writing, it was something I was good at and enjoyed doing. Sophomore year, I signed up for journalism, expecting it to be something that I could use to improve my writing skills and see if it was something that I could turn into a passion.
When I found out that my “Lolo,” grandpa in Tagalog, had been a journalist and wrote an entire memoir, this only fueled my interest in journalism and a chance to carry on his legacy. My roots, spreading to the Philippines and back, began to sprout into a desire to go into journalism. The first step in doing this was joining the Miegan.
The gifts that I have gained through the Miegan are irreplaceable. Of course, I have learned so much about journalism and writing, but the true gain goes so much deeper than that. Each member of the staff holds a special place in my heart. One hundred percent, I have roots planted in the overheated, fluorescent-lit journalism room. I have spent countless hours in that room battling writer’s block and making last-minute edits, but I have also made so many of my most treasured memories of my time at Miege.
No matter how stressful the amount of work or how impending the deadline, I always looked forward to newspaper class because of the people who were in it and the laughs I knew we would have together. Even as a writer, there are no words for me to describe how much the Miegan editors and staff mean to me and how much I will miss them.
As the nobody I was freshman year, I never would have thought I’d feel this way senior year. I’m so grateful I do, because it means that what I’ve gained here at Miege is of such significance that it will be something I’ll miss.
The answer to my beginning question is this: where you bloom results from where your roots are. And your roots are everywhere you have ever felt that you have been impacted or have made an impact.
Where you bloom — where I will bloom — all depends on how those roots are used to grow.