Why I Turned out the way I did

March 22, 2012
By Sarah Bogaert BRONZE, Palatine, Illinois
Sarah Bogaert BRONZE, Palatine, Illinois
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

When I was thirteen, I packed up my school things and transferred to Immanuel Lutheran Middle School in Palatine, Illinois. I didn’t mind it one bit; I was the one who made the decision to move. My mother and father knew I wasn’t happy at Plum Grove Junior High, and they consented with my plan to leave the school behind and finish my last year of middle school in a private institution. Though it was a mere mile or two away, it felt like I had entered into an alternate universe. Where there were 30 students in just one class back at Plum Grove, there were 30 students in our whole 8th grade class at Immanuel. The children were so different than those at my old school, and curriculum was centered on a more religious viewpoint. At first, it seemed so surreal; classrooms with fifteen students per class room, lunch with the teachers, chapel every Wednesday, we even had recess. I learned many lessons here, and made many friends. It was here that I met one of my best friends; Bekah Devine.
Bekah was a loud-mouthed, in-your-face girl with an attitude to match. She was the biggest challenge I ever had to deal with that year. However, one day during chapel, she sat next to me and it was there we decided we were going to be friends. She introduced me to the love of Christ, and basketball.
Immanuel Lutheran had an amazing basketball program, the ILS Bobcats. Coaches taught the girls discipline through hard work, sweat, blood, tears, and love of the Lord. I joined that team knowing hardly a wink of how to play the sport. It didn’t matter; I was going to be taught how to play whether I liked it or not. I became a good basketball player, not particularly in a certain position, but in a strong work ethic overall athletically. We placed 2nd in State that year, and 4th at Nationals; the year after, the Bobcats won both State and Nationals overall. That sport taught me how to be a team player, and it’s helped me in life ever since.
After basketball, I continued other various sports and activities, one of which landed me a lead in our school play that year, Pirates of Penzance. You have to understand, theater had always been one of my passions in life, that and my love for religion. I was cast as Ruth, the mother-figure to the main character Frederic. It was a big role and took up much of my spring that year, but it gave me a chance to outlet my theatrical abilities and talents. It also helped me make a lot more friends in that aspect of my life.
What really impacted me during my stay at Immanuel though, were my religion class and our chapel services. My religion class was taught by our history/religion teacher, Mr. Saunders. Mr. Saunders was a unique man, both brilliant, and a little crazy. He loved telling jokes and if we didn’t laugh, he just figured we didn’t understand the joke and henceforth continued to explain the joke to us in hopes that we would find his humor and laugh in response. We however, knew the reality of the situation which was; his jokes really just weren’t all that funny. Either way, he taught a mean religion class. It sparked many a days of heated debates, questions, and scripture memorization. Within that class, I memorized 12 passages in the Bible and by the end of the year I was able to recite them word-for-word and cite the Book and Verse of each passage by heart. He taught us that, in the world we live in, we must question everything and anything, which all revolves around the Lord.
My schooling at Immanuel was rigorous, heart-wrenching, mind-opening, inspiring and most importantly, a worthwhile experience which gave me friends that I still have to this day. It was here that I learned to live freely again and it was here that I found God.

The author's comments:
This is one of the pivotal points in my life that made the person I am today.

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