Things I've gathered

Written by Sierra Emilaire
April 27, 2017

I have to say, this has been one of the most exciting, terrible, amazing, emotionally draining, yet fulfilling semesters I’ve had.

Of course, the Southern Accent has contributed to this emotional roller coaster in both positive and not so positive ways. Nonetheless, it’s time to say goodbye as this is our last issue of the 2016-2017 school year. In saying goodbye, I am forced to look back at what I’ve gathered over this year as Accent editor-in-chief.

1. You are the most important person in your life: Confession. I’m a workaholic and that’s not always a bad thing, but this year I learned that there are more important things than work, like myself. I got sick in the first month of school (and consistently throughout the year) because I was so focused on making the paper perfect and having perfect grades that I neglected myself. Over last semester, I had to rediscover activities I enjoyed outside of working and make time for those activities. With such a rough start, that I never really recovered from, I was almost forced to withdraw from school winter semester. Luckily, over Christmas break I got help and I was able to recover enough to survive up until Spring Break. I started off this semester feeling like a new person, focused on the positive energy I let in and intention about repelling negative energy. I dedicated two hours a day for my leisure and often spent those hours coloring in an adult coloring book I got for Christmas (I know, I’m a dork). I also restricted myself from working more than the designated 15 hours at the Accent unless I absolutely had to. Lastly, I set times to help me remember to eat meals because with such a busy schedule it’s easy to forget you’re a human that needs energy. Oh, and sleep. SO important. I got to bed on non-Accent nights by 1 o’clock, sometimes before 11. I enjoyed my classes, I enjoyed the Accent and I really connected with my staff. We were getting out on Tuesday nights, A LOT earlier and things seemed okay. Things got a little rough again toward the middle of the semester and continued to go downhill with the confiscation of our April Fool’s edition, which leads me to my second lesson.

2. Surround yourself with a support group: My Accent staff have become my family and only people close to me will understand how important that is to me. During the whole April Fool’s fiasco, I had Kaitlin on the phone with me consistently throughout the day. She listened to my ugly cry and kept me up to date about everything going on with administration. Hannah and I were in Kentucky during the whole thing, and being so far from school made communication difficult but Kaitlin, Daniel and a number of the staff became my hands and feet for the weekend assuring that I wasn’t returning to a hostile/stressful environment. Even before the April Fool’s situation, the Accent staff and I have shared many laughs, lots of rants and through it all we’re supportive of each other. I am so sad that I won’t be forced to engage with these people twice a week next semester.

3. Do things that make you uncomfortable: This whole experience has been uncomfortable. It may not seem like it, but I am like an 80% introvert who really doesn’t like people. I know, I sound really harsh but I’m just being honest. Normally, I prefer to work alone and to be alone but working at the Accent and being on Student Association has forced me to say hello to people on the Promenade, to go to events with a lot of students present and to get on stage a lot more often. I have made so many new friends because of these two organizations, people I would have never seen being the hermit I was two years ago. I have also been placed in difficult situations that have also contributed to my growth as an individual.

Overall, it’s been a great year and I want to thank everyone that has encouraged me throughout this experience. I hope you’ve enjoyed the Accent and if you haven’t, give it a chance next year because I know Natalia will do a great job.

A tout a l’heure!