Senior Speeches: Brooke Volpe ’19

October 11, 2018

My time spent with my sisters has been quite the rollercoaster, but I have been taught lessons that I will bring with me throughout my life. 

Each year, seniors at Shattuck-St. Mary’s School deliver a speech to their peers on a topic of their choosing in the Newhall Auditorium. Often equal parts clever and moving, emotional and personal, each speech offers a glimpse into the lives, experiences, struggles, and triumphs of SSM seniors.

Throughout the 2018-19 school year, we will share these speeches with the SSM community and hope that you enjoy the humor, wisdom, and powerful reflections conveyed by our senior students.

November 5th, 2002 was the first day I was not an only child. It had been a little over 24 hours since I turned two, and I was unable to comprehend what a sibling was. Paige was not just a belated birthday gift, but also a gift that would stay with me for the rest of my life.

Once I understood Paige was not leaving anytime soon, I was given the gift of yet another baby sister, Ellie, on September 3rd, 2004. I especially did not realize that when moving to Connecticut, and buying a new house, another baby sister was also included!

On March 9th, 2006, I became the oldest of four girls. Paige, Ellie and Lila, as some may know, are my three little sisters, best friends, and also the reason why I have no clothes left in my closet when I come home for breaks. It is also the reason that when I leave to go back to Shattuck, I always leave crying. Yeah I know, shocker.  

My three little sisters are the gifts I never asked for, but I now realize are the greatest treasures in my life. My sisters and I are all very different. We all play different sports, so that we will not get competitive with one another, but we still do. My parents can agree to this, my sisters and I can argue over everything. With so many emotions flying around the house, there is a reason why my Dad likes working out so much, and why we bought a “Drama Queen Of the Year” Award. It explains why whenever anyone is informed that my parents have four girls they make a shocked face, smile, say “Aww that’s adorable”, and then give my parents the ‘How-are-you-still-managing?’ face.

My time spent with my sisters has been quite the rollercoaster, but I have been taught lessons that I will bring with me throughout my life. One of them is being a leader. Seeing them each change and mature has been a humbling experience. Growing up, my life was consumed with three little girls. At nighttime I would finish my homework early so I could read them a bedtime story, and even teach a little.  I’ll never forget the day when Lila told me she did not need me to read to her anymore. I realized, for the first time, they did not need me as much.

I focused on leading through my actions. I was told whatever I did, my sisters would follow. I believed that by pushing myself to work hard in school, my sisters would also take their education seriously. I would go to the backyard, every weekend, and practice soccer with them. I dreamt of being the perfect older sister, and role model, because I wanted them to be the best possible versions of themselves.

Looking at them now, there is no doubt in my mind they are bound to do incredible things. Even though it saddens me that my baby sisters do not need my help as much as before, I am elated to see the beautiful young women they have become.

Paige, Ellie, and Lila thank you for being the greatest gift life could have ever given me, and for always keeping me on my toes. Thank you Mom and Dad for giving me three best friends, and for being the best role models we could ever ask for. I love you guys to the moon and back. Thank you.


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