The Green & White

The Student News Site of Westlake High School

The Student News Site of Westlake High School

The Green & White

The Student News Site of Westlake High School

The Green & White

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My Personal Statement


During the summer of 2020, I was almost a new person. Following a sophomore year plagued by girl problems and giving up long-term activities, I felt that I finally had time to truly bond with my friends. By summer’s end, although I was mentally scarred from the difficulties of the school year, I was physically and happily scarred from an exciting, new adventure as well. 

A few weeks after school ended, I considered mountain biking with my friends after overhearing a conversation they had about a recent trip. Soon, I was researching bike vendors all over Cleveland, eager to socialize with my friends through new and exciting activities. One night, after weeks of anticipation, a man parked his large van on my driveway to sell me a $500 mountain bike.

Expecting a leisurely ride on a hiking trail, I wore white sneakers, cotton shorts, and a baseball cap during my first mountain biking trip with friends. However, my expectations of a calm ride proved to be erroneous, as I was thrust into the world of an extreme sport instead.

Despite falling several times while zooming down hills, bridges, and narrow trails, I enjoyed the struggle and found success to be satisfying. After giving my favorite pair of sneakers a dirt makeover, I pictured myself going on additional mountain biking adventures in the future.

Hoping to end the summer with a bang, I scheduled another mountain biking expedition with my friends two days before the start of junior year. At one point during the ride, my friend in the lead warned us of a deep ravine ahead. Nevertheless, I succeeded in getting across smoothly. I felt invincible.

Until, however, I encountered an obstacle when I least expected it.

Once out of the dark woods, the leading friend warned us again, this time of a “janky jump.” With a wide trail lying ahead, I took his warning lightly, held back by the assumption that I had time to prepare. Biking as fast as I could, I was suddenly off my bike and flying in the air.

The “janky jump,” as it turned out, was the large bump that preceded a portion of the trail. Landing hard on my hands and knees, I noticed a large abrasion on my right knee in the spot where my leggings tore. Over time, it endured various phases. That night, after my friends and I completed the expedition, the abrasion was shaped like a heart and seeping an oily liquid. Later, it solidified into a piece of crusty cheese pizza, becoming a yellow, crumbly scab atop a foundation of red fluid. Finally, it became the tiny, skin-colored mark it is today after months of peeling.

Now, you may be asking: what did I gain from this whole experience?

Other than a new scar, I learned to always expect obstacles to strike at any moment, even if I have already conquered a tough challenge. The intensity of my first mountain biking trip following the long process of purchasing a bike and the “janky jump” following the deep ravine both taught me this.

Moreover, what remains of my abrasion is not only a battle scar, but a teenage birthmark as well. Similar to the abrasion, I endured many different phases and rebirths to become who I am today. Although I initially planned to specialize in the medical field due to my mother’s profession, the uncanny nature of my abrasion has inspired me further. As a result, I plan to learn more about the human body and its fragility when I attend college.

Overall, although sophomore year and the summer of 2020 were important to my personal development, college will be of even greater importance. Despite their significance, they are only two chapters in an odyssey of growth.


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My Personal Statement