Graduation Speech - Part 4
In some Hindu communities, there is a rite of passage called the bizarre wedding…This is when a sick child or adult marries… a dog - Graduation Speech introduction. Would you want to be stuck with a dog as your spouse for the rest of your life? I think not… The person is believed to transfer his or her illness and bad luck to the dog and so treat it like a normal bride or groom. There have even been some instances when the person and the dog sleep in the same bed… well…thank God we are not living in that community!!! So spare a moment to think about the poor children who are married to a dog and think of how lucky we are – educated, cultured and moving forward in the right direction —- moving to high school. We are no longer kids as we confidently move forward to face World challenges and achieve higher goals.
I first arrived in Jakarta on the 30th of March 2006. On my very first day at school Ms. Fezler the counsellor gave me a form to sign up for the Bali ESP trip. What a Nightmare!! I had to decide about going away on a school trip for a week. I was nervous and petrified!! Firstly: I just arrived into Jakarta. Secondly: I didn’t know any of the teachers or students and lastly and most importantly: I didn’t know anybody to put down as my roommates!! What a dilemma I was in. This required my brain to do some problem solving. I had to settle into school in a flash and make new friends so as to feel part of the JIS community. It was easier said than done but I DID IT. Instead to crying on my mum’s shoulders I faced up to the problem and adapted to my new life at JIS with enthusiasm and a smile of my face. If I can use these skills of adaptability and problem solving when I move to high school I know I can achieve success in everything I do.
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Travelling on a long train journey is how I imagine moving from middle school to high school. The train follows the straight tracks and continues moving forward. Sometimes it may wobble or you may have a sudden brake or jerk at a red light but with a little bit of creativity, logical thinking one can get the train back on track. Similarly one may have some stumbles or mishaps in your journey through middle school. But good teachers, right counselling and support from your peers can put you back on track. This supports the JIS essential quality creative thinking. If you cannot think creatively and get back on board your train, there will be many problems you face. In life be resourceful and imaginative and carve yourself a road to walk in the right direction.
In JIS, there was once a subject I detested!!! I didn’t find it interesting at all. I went to the counsellor in the middle of the year, and asked if I could drop it. I told her all about all my feelings on the subject and how I wanted to quit. She gave me some great advice ‘That you cannot run away from your problems, and sometimes in life you have to do the right thing even if you don’t like it.’ Today I’m grateful I have finished that course, because it’s a requirement for JIS graduation. I think due to this incident I have become responsible for my actions and a positive learner.
The best gift that JIS has given me is tennis. I had quit competitive tennis in Singapore. When I came to JIS, a teacher saw my potential and encouraged me to take the tennis on as a competitive sport once more. I am so thankful because some of my greatest moments in Jakarta have been winning some tennis tournaments and more importantly enjoying the sport with my friends and family as it should be. The right guidance in a young ones life at the right time is so important.
A. P. Gouthey once said, “If life were measured by accomplishments, most of us would die in infancy.” He was wrong. Here we all are, having accomplished the various wonders of middle school. So spare a moment thinking about all your glories and achievements in the last few years. Fun and carefree days, hard work and exam days …or boring days. Each day in school has helped us develop our personality, character and hopefully guided us up the right path. Let’s hope our tracks remain straight and no detours or falls change our direction from becoming smart, well groomed, knowledgeable and educated adults of the 21st century.