You are special

Ella Schulte, Student Life Assistant Editor & News Writer

Monday through Friday from 7:40 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. you can undoubtedly find me roaming the halls of Xavier. This has been a part of my daily routine which has remained constant over the last four years of my life.

Most days, as I walk down the hallways with an iPad, pencil case and a million tasks on my mind in need of completion, bright-colored and glitter-covered paper signs, otherwise known as locker posters, still manage to catch my eye.

Society tells teens that there are very few things that define who you are in high school.

The first thing is your social status, the second is your friend group, the third is your appearance and the fourth is your ability to be good at something, whether that be your participation in a sport or extracurricular club or activity.

So, as I walk down the hallways, I wonder if my blank gray locker makes me any less valuable than the individuals whose lockers are across from and next to mine, decorated from top to bottom in various posters and shout outs.

Growing up, one of my favorite books was You Are Special by Max Lucado.

It’s stated in a summary taken from Google that, “Every day the small wooden people called Wemmicks do the same thing: stick either gold stars or gray dots on one another. The pretty ones—those with smooth wood and fine paint—always get stars. The talented ones do, too. Others, though, who can do little or who have chipped paint, get ugly gray dots.”

One character in particular is named Punchinello. 

Throughout the book, he continually struggles with how the opinions of others define who he is when determining his own self-worth based upon their judgments.

As a society, we make it seem as though one’s worth is validated only once it is recognized.

It is then and only then that their presence is made known.  

Sure, the possibility of getting recognized is motivation for many to pursue and excel at what they are good at, but what about those who just aren’t good enough to make the team? 

I’ve never been one to speak out or up, so I tell you this not for sympathy, pity or attention, but rather in hopes that one day you see just how much a lack of those silly gold stars has left a permanent mark on those who don’t yet know what they are destined to be.  

You, yes you, are special.