This year was very important in the somewhat vast scheme of my life, thus making it worthy of personal reflection. During this article, I will separate my months here into individual periods of time for introspection.

September: This was a month of tumultuous feelings. When I arrived at FMA I was forcing myself to think of the coming year as a new beginning, a personal renaissance. Sadly, even with my pre-determined attitude in place, it was the beginning of a very bumpy and winding road. Due to my unwillingness to change my old habits and behavior, I was provided with circumstances that had been specially designed to help me decide to make correct choices. This is when the “fun” began.

October: This was when my inner-turmoil and conflict reared its ugly head. At the time I felt justified in my behavior, and I felt as though my actions were appropriate to the circumstances. Now I know differently. (Did I mention that it’s now May?

November: I’d like to say I saw the error of my ways during this month. I’d like to say that my hard head softened with my consequences, but it didn’t. I continued to be late and refused to do my best work, so I was not allowed to remain on kitchen crew. I did not turn in my homework and did not pay attention in class. As a result, during the entire month of November, I was on the “alternate schedule” which meant I was not in class with the other students, but instead worked outside in the morning, and did schoolwork in the afternoon. I did not eat meals with the other students, and I spent my weekends doing “volunteer work.” I wish I had known then what I know now.

December and January: During these months, I finally started to make sense of…myself. After Christmas break, I was finished with my previously earned consequences and on track toward a “better tomorrow.”

February: Homework. This one word seemed to be my downfall. Throughout the month I was on Pre-Level One for refusal to turn in my homework. Despite encouragement from my classmates, and despite the fact that they always had time for their homework, I continued to make excuses for my failures. I always claimed that I had either forgotten or that there had not been enough time in the day. I was wrong.

March: My days seemed to be getting even worse. Looking back at it now, I can’t see what I was thinking. Then I made a change.

April and May: This is when it all seemed to come into perspective. I am on Level One again, and I am turning in my homework reliably. It baffles me how much easier life is since I have become accountable for my actions rather than fighting against my responsibilities. I am now on track to reach Level Two.

In summary, this year was a rollercoaster from which I have learned a great deal. Had I chosen to do otherwise, I see now that I could have gained even more.

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