What Matters Most

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What Matters Most
by Logan Tyler Bonham



You would think it would be easy to write an essay on what matters most. It is another essay, much like the millions of essays I feel I have written throughout my years of schooling. The topics change but the process is always the same. Preplan your essay. Brainstorm your ideas. Complete a rough draft. Make corrections on your rough draft. Submit the final essay for grading. Then PRAY! On one hand there is relief that the essay is done. On the other hand it is dread, what will my grade be this time? Will there be so much red on the paper that I will unable to recognize my original essay? Then the day comes when the teacher passes out the graded paper. Some people are excited and some roll their eyes- not again! Why can't I get a good essay grade, just once God, just once? I promise I won't tell anyone it finally happened, but please. So, that is where life finds me at this point, writing another one of those essays. The process begins all over again. Except this time I have to submit it to a magazine. Great! Just what I need. Public humiliation on top of everything else. I bow my head and PRAY first this time! Lord, help get through this. I would like to finish with all of these essays and graduate with my class. At this very moment, graduating is what matters most. I know my family loves me but I think my family could also become Navy Seals taking out a specified target if I were to not graduate. So, graduate I must! Repeat the mantra..graduate, graduate, graduate.

To be honest, with that elite force of “family navy seals”, I would not be who I am without the influence and love of each one of them. I also consider my friends among that group. The only way to remain sane during your senior year is with help and distractions from your friends. These are really the things that will remain the constant in my life. No matter what I do and no matter where I live, I will always have these strong foundations to support me. It is a hard time though. My friends and I are about to graduate together (we hope) and fan out into different parts of our nation. Even though technology is very advanced and we can do things like Skype when we wish to talk to each other, it still will not be the same. There will be no last minute decision to head somewhere and grab lunch or catch a movie. There will be no get togethers that we all hang out at. What happens then? Do we head off to college and find “replacement friends”, someone to fill the void where our childhood friends would be? I am not sure, and to be honest, I am not looking forward to finding out.

What happens in my family? Do I now become a visitor in my own home? Trust me, my two brothers and one sister often annoy me, but will I really be able to say goodbye to them and head off on my own? Not into the sunset on a horse like John Wayne, but rather, down an interstate in a Buick Rendezvous. It does not seem to have the same affect as the horse did. Anyway, my sister will have just turned four. We are fourteen years apart. We were both born on the Monday following Mother's Day. I was born on May 10th in 1993 and she was born May 14th in 2007. I told my mother I already had “enough siblings” to deal with, but she said it was a little too late to speak up since she was already pregnant. My sister relies on me. I am the one she gets when she wants something. It is a strange thing the connection that we have. Because we are so much older that she is, her vocabulary is extensive. It is like having a conversation with an adult and not a three year old. When mom told her I was heading off to college, she said, “Tyler, you are not going to college!”. I tried reasoning with her, which does not work very well. When I told her I was going to go anyway, she decided, “Okay, then I will go with you!” This would be a little bit hard to explain to my roommate. “I am sorry, but my sister has decided to move in and run the place, okay?” Boy, will I make friends fast at college that way. But, in all honest, family is my priority. I know that everything I am and everything I have I owe to them. I am lucky to have my great grandparents in my life. So, when I participate in something, everyone shows up. They are in the eighties now and have not missed a little league, middle school, or high school activity that I have participated in. They would not dream of it. I feel lucky to have such a close relationship with them as many of my friends do not have living great grandparents. My grandparents support me as well. They encourage me and attend everything I do as well. My grandfather is the voice of “perspective” for me. He always makes me look beyond the situation to what lies ahead even if I cannot seem to get past what lay in front of me. I am sure he will be giving me advice for years and years to come. I appreciate it though or I am sure will one day. My parents are divorced and have been since I was in elementary school. My relationship with each of them is very different. I know my mom wants to me to go off to college and do something that I will enjoy, but I also know she is going to be sad to see me go. In many ways, we are a lot alike. I am sure she will be Skyping me to make sure I am keeping up with my work like I am supposed to. I think she will take this move in my life the hardest.

I guess there are many things on my mind that matter right now. Graduating is definitely in the forefront right now for me. It is a milestone in my life, but right know it seems like an uphill battle with no light at the end of the tunnel. This is not because I am a bad student, it is just I never really found my rhythm this years, something has been off kilter. My friends matter to me a great deal. I know we still have many good times ahead of us, such as prom next weekend, but there will never have been enough of these times hanging out. My family is my foundation no matter what. I am hoping our relationships do not change and that I will see them often. I know if my sister has anything to do with it, I will see them every weekend. She still is not convinced college is such a good idea. My brothers will probably just be fighting over my bedroom when I leave. That's just what brothers do. My mom and stepfather will probably put on brave faces and try to let me know everything will be great. This is a new chapter in my life. My mom will be trying not to show me how much her heart is breaking as she gets in her car and leaves me at the doorstep of my dorm. But, I will know. A son always recognizes the broken heart of is mother, even if she tries her best to hide it. I will see it in her eyes and hear it in her voice, even though she knows this is my chance to make something of myself and to be successful. She knows I will make her proud, but we both know it means I am growing up, and I do not know any mother who is really ready for that to happen with any of their children. It always does though, eventually.





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