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Senior Goodbye: Maddy Rice

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Senior Goodbye: Maddy Rice

Photo by: Preston Rolls

Photo by: Preston Rolls

Photo by: Preston Rolls

Maddy Rice, Managing Editor

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At the very beginning of my freshman letter, I said that I wanted to be an editor for the yearbook. Four years later, I smiled when I read that on the couch in the newspaper room because what I didn’t know was that I’d be sashed as a content editor for the yearbook at the end of that year, and the year after that, and then finally managing editor of the newspaper my senior year. Except, as a freshman I never could’ve predicted that I would find my home in newspaper instead of yearbook. There’s a lot of things I probably couldn’t have predicted as a freshman; my life now is drastically different than how it was four years ago.

When adults reminisced about how much they grew in high school and I watched and read coming of age stories where the characters had these theatrical moments that marked their first step away from innocence, I didn’t give it much thought. Afterall, this is real life; I’m not going to wake up on my 18th birthday or walk in the door on my first day of senior year and have some grand epiphany about who I am as a person. And I didn’t. Instead, each new experience slowly chipped away at who I thought I was and replaced it with a new idea. And I didn’t even realize it had happened until one day, I was driving down Mopac listening to some cheesy song on the radio watching the sun set. It was one of those beautiful, big-sky, Texas sunsets that people post on their snapchat stories and as I watched it I thought to myself: I did it. I’m still not sure what exactly I did, but when I took a moment to look at my life the same way I looked at that sunset I saw crazy new colors that I definitely didn’t know about before. Who my friends were had changed, my relationship with my family had changed, my idea of success had changed, my eyebrows ESPECIALLY changed; I wasn’t the black skinny-jean wearing freshman who dreamt about the day she’d finally get a car anymore. And I continue to have that revelation at random moments like that, almost like snapshots where I look around in a moment with my friends and think about how happy I am and how I never thought I would get to that point. So thank you, to everyone, you know who you are.

However, the one thing that hasn’t changed from the very first day of my freshman biology class with Mr. Dammann was my decision on how to spend the rest of my life after high school. I never actually admitted it until the fall of this year, but when I sat in the back left corner of that classroom listening to a lecture about viruses I knew I wanted to become a doctor. But I haven’t been a “science” kid, my thing was English. I thought the idea of me becoming a doctor would make people laugh or think silently that I’m never actually going to get there. So I let myself explore different career paths, even settled for becoming a nurse instead of paying for medical school, but when I had to sit down and think about what I wanted to do with my life the summer before senior year, the only thing that left me with any satisfaction was the idea of having M.D. behind my name. I’m incredibly proud to admit now what I want to do in the world and have the confidence to say I can do it. And so that’s why I can’t wait to study neuroscience at CU Boulder in the fall— it’s one step closer to becoming Dr. Rice.

Lastly, I’d like to thank my mom. My hardworking, beautiful, absolutely crazy and skinny mother who went from my worst enemy in middle school to one of my closest friends now. Thank you for being understanding and realistic with me, for only grounding me for like maybe a night or two when I’d come home four hours past my curfew, for buying me not one, but two dogs. Don’t let this go to your head— you’re not perfect, lady. Far from it, actually, and neither am I. It’s been a pleasure being your grocery shopper and carpool for soccer, baseball, basketball, football and tennis. And at one point swim. Good luck finding a new one though and don’t let Dawson rob you you should only be paying him $5 in gas money if he takes over. You are the reason I’m able to see my friends as much as I do and deal with dad (because you’re the expert). Thank you so much for working tirelessly on audits that you procrastinated until the last minute (I know the feeling) and putting up with Cynthia for 40+ hours a week just to make sure you can put food on the table and support my makeup addiction, Cami’s obsession with shoes and Colin in general. Your dedication as a single mother is awe-inspiring and I’m still not sure how you did it, but you managed to raise a totally amazing, gorgeous, intelligent and above all, incredibly humble daughter (Cami) and me. I do not consider Colin raised, but you’ll get there. Thank you for everything you’ve ever done for me, especially the birthday decorations that I know you put a lot of thought into, and although this obviously isn’t a goodbye (you still have me for three more months), I wanted to make sure everyone on the internet knew how much you’ve done for me. I love you.

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Senior Goodbye: Maddy Rice