INSIGHT:  Knowing and Being Known

By Anvika, Class of 2025

Remember all those cliché movies about high school with the misfit main character and unapproachable cliques? How, when the main character picked a clique, they seemed to get stuck and lose part of themselves to fit into a category? That is what middle school me expected high school me to be like, having to pick parts of myself, choose certain things that I love, and leave behind everything else. I would later discover that I didn’t have to fit into a single box, but instead I could discover the many boxes that connect to make me who I am.

Knowing yourself is first and foremost about discovering who you are. Throughout middle school, Eastside Prep encouraged and supported me in trying new things, things that I thought I didn’t like, things that I didn’t know existed, things that I had always wanted to try. My explorations were diverse: the play, green club, basketball and ultimate frisbee, maker space, and knitting. I discovered that I probably won’t be cast in a movie about high school or shoot the buzzer-beater in the WNBA finals, but I also unearthed niches, such as rowing, that I enjoy. Today, between my sports, my hobbies, my community service, and my friends, I am part of numerous communities, none of which fully represent me on their own, but which together form the tapestry of who I am.

In a small community such as EPS, we see each other in many different environments: classes, clubs, advisory, athletics, and even outside of school. We are known through the collection of these threads of interaction. Sure, plenty of people know me: what I look like, my name, maybe my favorite ice cream flavor, but many also know about my aspirations, my frustrations, and my ruminations. My friends look out for me because knowing me enables them to empathize when I struggle and amplify my joy, and knowing them allows me to reciprocate.

Through my time here, the Eastside Prep community has fostered the connections needed for me to know and be known, grow as a person, explore as a student, and connect as a friend. Being known allows me to be supported and being supported encourages me to try new things to better know myself.