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 2017-18 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.
So far, I’ve lived in the United States, Canada, and England. When I am asked where I’m from, I don’t really know what to say. I have to pause for a minute and ask myself, where is my home?
As a kid growing up in Canada and America, I instantly got hooked on hockey. Being an 11 year old in Northville, Michigan meant street hockey at the end of the block. Like a typical kid from that area, I wanted to play college hockey and be a professional one day, but not everyone had the motivation to pursue it.
When I was 12, my parents told me we were moving to England. I didn’t know what to think. If I’m being completely honest, at that age the only thing I knew about England was that there is a queen that everyone looks up to as a god, with guards in fur hats protecting her palace and people drinking tea and playing cricket! Did they even play hockey over there? Five months later, I was crying and telling my mom I wanted to go back home. That first year was incredibly hard.
But time passed, and England started to become fun. As I went to an International School, I started to make friends with kids from all over the world, including Sweden, Japan, Argentina, Egypt, and Italy. I started to take advantage of the opportunity to experience living in both North America and Europe.
The only problem with England was the level of hockey. Players didn’t care about winning or losing. My teammates were never serious before games or practices as they thought hockey was just “an extra thing to do.” Lastly, winning games 35-0 was not what I needed to improve and achieve my youthful dream of playing college hockey in the future. As much as I’d become adjusted to England, I knew I needed to play the sport I love and chase my dream back in the United States. In August 2015, I arrived at Shattuck-St. Mary’s.
Shattuck is a community that strives together and gives its students a chance to pursue their dreams, no matter how big they may be. Being away from friends and family in England is tough, but Shattuck has helped me focus on being myself and working towards my goal.
Leaving here in nine months is a scary thought, but it’s also time to move on and start a new chapter in my life. Shattuck has been my home away from home for the past three years, and I will never really leave it behind. But now I can answer the question that I asked at the beginning, “Where is home?” It’s more than a nationality or a passion or a place that feeds your dreams. It’s the place that you feel most comfortable and happy, and right now that is London because that’s where my family is and my family means the world to me. As time goes by that will change again, and again. You see in my mind, the answer to where home is, is where love is. I am from many places and for that, I am very grateful and glad that I’ve had the opportunity to call Shattuck one of my homes in my life.