Senior accepts Christ, discovers new perspective on life
Senior Dana King reflects on her experience as a lifer at FC.
I was first welcomed to Fresno Christian as a kindergarten student in 1999 and was sucked into its web. I mainly say this because I am still here 13 years later. However, I believe that my high school life was defined by what former teacher Paul McEntee said to me in 5th grade: "Life is defined by relationships."
During freshman year there were lots of hardships not only for me, but for many of my friends, due to the fact that many teachers were asked to leave because FC could not afford to pay them their salaries. Many programs were destroyed as a result of this, and many people ended the 2009 school year in tears. People who I had planned to build relationships with were no longer here, and my overall outlook towards high school diminished.
Yet there were three years left for me and I decided to make the best of the opportunities that were still available to uncover. However, as I returned for the 2009-2010 school year, many of my friends chose to go to public school and leave me at FC. They encouraged me to leave, saying that a small school could not offer me anything, and that I would need to transfer in order get into the college of my dreams: Columbia University. Therefore, my whole attitude went in the dumps.
I became sad; I was sick all the time and essentially tried to ignore all possibilities of a high school experience. At first, people texted me to know how I was doing and would visit, but then, no one came around the house anymore. Then junior year, I met a girl who had always been around, but whom I had never paid attention to: Gigi Thao. We had nearly all the same classes and we became close. We struggled through our first AP (Advanced Placement) classes and I even got the chance to work on her family's farm. I credit her for helping me gain a passion for school and ignore the personal problems of the past.
In addition, I met someone who helped me pick up on a more spiritual side of life. I was depressed, and had a grim aspect towards the future. Her name is Mal. She answered my questions about what was unfair to me in life. She taught me more about the word that I learned the past 10 years in school. I had always learned the Bible verses and studied the Bible for school, but I never internalized it. Christ was a figure whom I had to know in order to pass a class, but in terms of living my life, I could care less.
"Sometimes trying so hard to be the perfect adult can mean that we loose sight of what is important--relationships. After looking into the negativity and bitterness inside of me, there is only one other option, to look towards Christ, thank him for the individuals that remain in my life and to just keep living for him." -- Dana King, '12
Either way, I kept talking to her and the more I questioned why I was alive and why I was going through these motions of high school. I have always been driven, but I wondered what was the point after all my schooling was complete. After being submerged in the truth of God through her, I became a Christian and was ready to live for him, Aug. 17, 2011.
With my new zeal to continue through school, senior year was upon me and I thought nothing bad could ever happen to me; though I foolishly entered the school year with a full schedule. However, my world shattered with the death of my Grandmother, September 30, and it impacted every decision and every action I continued to do throughout the year. Essentially, the woman who encouraged me through every difficult moment and single-handedly supported me in all my activities, was gone and my foundation seemed to falter.
Gigi was there throughout it all, but at the end of the day, I sat down on the floor in my room and cried and asked God what did I do to deserve my everything taken away from me. I wondered if this was what being a Christian meant, and if this was what happened to people like that, I wanted out. But then he spoke to me, I had put her above him and he was not okay with that.
According to King, she does not regret any experiences while attending FC and feels that these have contributed to the person she is today.
At that moment, I knew where my heart lied, and in order to continue with my life, He had to be my foundation and no one can be above him. My grades suffered some, and my "good idea" of having a full load as a senior back fired tremendously. Gigi stayed with me through it all and I can be proud to say that she is my best friend.
When college letters began to come in the mail, my anxiety went through the roof. After I received my 10 applications back, I only got one acceptance letter. All I can say is that God made the decision for me, and reflecting back, I am grateful that he did. He had the perfect plan, and instead of feeling like a failure, I felt peace.
Throughout the stresses that kept building up inside of me, I had the crazy idea to participate in softball just because I knew I would never play sports again. Then in January, a new student came, a freshman who joined the team. I was barely getting by and she made me happy. Completely carefree, but dedicated to the sport, Ashley Garcia made a difference in my life. She allowed me to step away from the pressures of school and reminded me of my senior friend that I had as a freshman, alumna Chelsea Joy.
Sometimes trying so hard to be the perfect adult can mean that we loose sight of what is important--relationships. After looking into the negativity and bitterness inside of me, there is only one other option, to look towards Christ, thank him for the individuals that remain in my life and to just keep living for him.
Relationships can come in the form of people leaving an individual's life, a mentor, a best friend, or even a kid who appears out of providence. After 13 years at the same institution, I have built many strong relationships with people and have been able to get to know their hearts. The best relationship I made was with Christ at the start of my senior year, and he has blessed me through these people in my life. Relationships did define my life and I have the feeling they will continue to impact me for the rest of my life.
Senior Dana King will attend University of California, Davis in the fall, where she will double major in music and neuroscience and behavioral studies.
For more senior columns, read the May 17 article, Campus families foster ASB president's faith.