Make sure to appreciate the little things
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Walking into my kindergarten classroom, I thought I was pretty much the coolest kid ever. I had already learned the aleph-bet in preschool and was starting on my Tamar Linhart soccer team, so I felt I was at the top of my game. Little did I realize, I was in for quite the shock.
Other kids already knew how to say full sentences in Hebrew! They could count to 10! They could even tie their own shoes! How was I supposed to keep up with all of this insanity?
I realized as I was writing this that a column about learning to be humble is one of the more ironic things I could have chosen, but all the way from that first day of school up until today, I have continued to be astounded by those around me.
Whether it be in academics, athletics or extracurriculars, there are people in my grade who have accomplished things I could never imagine doing. Impactful community service projects, intense summer programs or random talents are just some of the many things that I’ve come to realize make everyone in my grade and school so impressive.
In addition to the appropriate humbling I have received from my peers, I owe a great deal of credit to the teachers I have had throughout JDS. Whether it be the wake-up calls from English teachers that frequently have no idea what I’m saying, realizing after failing every genetics quiz in a week that I don’t actually know the material or having a strict enforcement of the “no celebrating” rule (among other rules) in math, I am constantly reminded of my place.
I have done my best to apply this understanding to as many parts of my life in the school community as possible, specifically in what I see as the “little things.” These little things are small actions I’ve done my best to maintain in my daily routine to repay the community from which I have learned so much. Making the small extra gesture of holding the door for someone, saying thank you to teachers after every class and not cutting the lunch line, to me, are some of the most personally-satisfying actions I have taken at the Upper School. While to most these may seem to be trivial acts, they are a constant reminder to me to keep in check the misguided five-year-old me who thought he was pretty freaking amazing, and instead remember to appreciate all that is around me, both the people and especially, the little things.