I’m not sure if I’ve told this story here before on the blog but I’m going to retell it again as I see it fitting after the announcement of the Top 100 Blogs for Kidspot’s Voices of 2015. It’s also a memory that I want to preserve in the blog so my girls can learn from it when they are older.
When I was in year 12 I had a best friend who did incredibly well at everything she put her hands to. She was very smart and was well liked by everyone in our grade. One of the extra activities she did at school was organise our school meetings. It’s so long ago I can’t even remember what they were called, but basically, all the grades were piled into buses and taken up the road to a church where we would have our school meeting which was run like a church service. There would be a singing, announcements and a main speaker. My best friend organized who did what at the meeting. She took the role seriously and got super stressed every time the meeting had to be organized.
In year 12 I strived hard to do well. I studied hard, attended outside events when needed, participated in the school band, auditioned and got small parts in the plays and musicals and even got involved in sport which all involved a lot of time outside of school hours. I enjoyed the variety of activities I got involved in.
At the end of year 12 we had an awards evening where awards were given out to the dux of each grade, the best student in each subject, the best sportsperson and etc. On that night over 13 years ago, I was going to receive a staggering 6 or 7 awards for all the extracurricular activities I participated in over that year. I was up and down that stage like Taylor Swift winning billboard awards.
Anyway, there was a major award that I was nominated for as was my best friend and two other guys in our grade and I can’t even remember what it was called but it was the award given to the person who was an all-rounder and participated at school with enthusiasm. It was a high caliber award. I internally assumed that I would get it or at least thought I had a high chance of receiving it because all my awards proved I was a definitely all rounder.
But I didn’t get it. My best friend did.
Out of all the awards that I walked away with that night, not receiving that award was a big disappointment to me. All that striving and all that hard work hadn’t been recognized in the way I had thought it would.
It was some weeks later I stayed over my best friend’s house and we were about to enter her room and she stopped talking to me mid-sentence and noticed the engraved plaque had fallen off the trophy of the prize I should have would have won. It was in that moment I realized the award meant little in the scheme of things. It meant something for a small amount of time back then but within weeks the trophy was falling apart. The status was there but it was soon forgotten by Christmas holidays. Fourteen years later it means very little still… although I am retelling the tale here.
The reason I wanted to share this story from my past is because I know that there are bloggers who are disappointed about not making the top 100 for Voices of 2015. But my encouragement to you is don’t let disappointment overshadow tomorrow’s dreams. Your voice matters. It will always matter and the top 100 will change year to year.
Our awards as bloggers shouldn’t come from titles or accolades, but from the comments left from readers or the re-shares of posts that resonate with others. It’s also ok to admit to being disappointed, but don’t let that disappointment dull your fire. Let it spoke it.
After retelling my high school memory, what disappointments me the most is not the fact that I didn’t get the award, but my attitude to not receiving it and my expectation to receive it. In the scheme of life, it hasn’t changed a thing. If anything, it taught me at a young age that you can work really hard at something and not get the recognition you think you deserve. I learned it’s better to do rewarding work than to work for rewards. Even now I believe any accolades that are above the reward of doing something I love are a bonus.