Senior Column: Madysen Alvarez


Madysen Alvarez, Writer

I walked into my freshman year with such a strong idea of who I wanted to be, but I wonder what 14-year-old me would think looking at me today, nothing near that person imagined myself to be. 

Yet still, through the worst years of my life and the best, I am more. 

I am more intelligent, more loving, more kind. I have more love around me, more support. I didn’t enjoy all of high school, but putting an end to these four years is bittersweet the way I never thought it would be. 

COVID-19 changed everything for everyone, and I was no different. Alongside familial issues and a toxic relationship, I struggled to keep my love for school unscathed. While my grades drastically dropped my sophomore and junior years, I wouldn’t have made it through my senior year without the support from my teachers. From Schlabach to Keene, Bergin to Cummings, Klein to Thede and Ingemann, each showed me how to be a better student and encouraged me to be the best possible version of myself. I thank each and every educator in this school, but especially mine these past two semesters. 

I also wouldn’t have made it if it weren’t for a specific girl who I was merely acquaintances with for years before we grew close. Her persistence to show me love and support went such a long way. From playing Monopoly in her living room to making French toast in her kitchen, I found a safe place to share my hurt without fear of judgment. She encouraged me to seek better love and support, which is exactly what I did. She helped me learn how to prioritize me, how to love kindly, how to be me without any restraint.  

Alongside this friendship, I also found friendships I didn’t think would be more than school friends.

An artsy girl has come to be one of my best friends and makes me laugh until my stomach hurts.

A girl who was loud and lit up a room by just stepping in it taught me how to be kinder and think of people with more compassion. 

A quiet girl in my Government class taught me how to see love in the tiniest things. I’ve learned so much from those around me throughout high school, all while sitting at a desk through lessons.

While these were arguably the hardest years of my life (so far), I learned more than I ever believed was possible. The people around me have carried me through these halls, the four walls we all believe we hate until we have to leave them. 

September of 2019 I walked in with such high expectations for high school. Today, I walk out with my future planned. I will attend UW-Milwaukee knowing I can achieve higher expectations for myself for these upcoming years.