4th August 2017

A life less ordinary speech

A life less ordinary…


What do you want to do when you’re older?  It’s a question I’ve been asked a lot lately, one i try avoid. 2018 is right around the corner for all of us, I have dreams and goals i want to achieve, but lately I’ve found out the biggest enemy you will ever deal with is yourself, the things i should do, i don’t do, the things i shouldn’t do, i do. Something i’ve had to tell myself every day, is that this is just one section of my life, it’s temporary, school is temporary, my friends, my home, my subjects are temporary and with only a few more months left of my senior year here at college I’ve decided to make the most of it. But as i get closer to adulthood i begin to redefine myself and who i am right now? Who do i want to become? What is it about me right now that i have to leave behind to improve myself.


When i was told i was going to have to write a speech to present to my classmates on the topic of something that has shaped your life, something that has made you the person you are.. Right… now, I simply thought I wasn’t going to do it, the thought of public speaking alone was already quite the struggle for me, not to mention I, myself wasn’t exactly sure what has made me the person i am to this day, until I actually sat down and thought about it, it became obvious to me that the reason I am the person i am right now is because of the people that have surrounded me.


First point. School. You have been some of the toughest years for me, coming into NCEA I thought would be the biggest challenge for me, last year I was told Level 2 would be the hardest year out of all your schooling years, but i did my best to prepare for the next essay that was due tomorrow or the speech that was due the day after that, they taught me Math, they taught me science, English, Physical education, history. but what i wasn’t taught in class was how much a person can affect my life. and life is hard, easy is not an option. It would’ve been great to have known some crucial things that everyone will have to deal with at some point in their life, resilience: meaning the ability to recover quickly from difficulties.

Tolerance, the power of forgiveness, communication, valuing time and opportunities are just some ideas that could’ve benefited all of us.


One thing I’ve had to work hard at learning is how to forgive people that have hurt you at some point in your life, how to forgive when you cannot forget, whether that’s your family, your friend group, boyfriend, girlfriend.. Everyone has something in their past, that they wish perhaps didn’t happen, things that if they had to re live they would do differently..  I realised it takes courage to let things go, things that hurt you, things where you suffered loss, people who left your life, I’ve realised what’s in front of me is greater than what was behind me that you can’t change your past, but you can learn from it. Let’s be honest, 2016 sucked, and for most of us in this class now i can guarantee there is something that affected all of us, somethings that we wish maybe didn’t occur, but it’s how we take that situation and learn from it, and for me that lesson was to never take anything for granted, even the little things in life.


Second point. Friends. Over the last 5 years there have been many experiences that have helped shape me to be who i am right now, and friends are apart of that. My friend group has been changing ever since i can remember, when I was younger I used to think the more friends i had, the better my life would be, that having more friends made you a better person; I now realise having a few loyal friends is all i will ever need, it didn’t take me long to realise who my true friends were, and those who i would consider to be more like acquaintances.


Third point. Family. My family is one of the most important things in my life, I can always change my friends, but my family stays. They have seen me through the hardest times in my life, although they may not realise, but my family have been the very reason for some of tough times, I guess you could say things changed, when my mum and dad split up after dad was charged with drink driving, along with myself in the car. I wasn’t quite old enough to realise what was happening, and only knew something definitely wasn’t right when there were headlights coming towards our car, the split second I realised we were the ones on the wrong side, everything seemed to move in slow motion. The people in the car that were heading towards us who happened to be our neighbours at the time, thankfully pulled over in time to call the police, who soon pulled us over after quite some chase, as for my neighbors who are very close family friends to this day, i have so much to be thankful for because if it weren’t for those people… who knows what would’ve happened. When dad left, It took years to forgive him, But when i did, it was definitely hard but i remembered how important it was to me to have a good relationship with him, i learnt to let go of the past, but not to forget. And If you know Wanaka, you’ll know how little time it takes for word to spread. This not only affected me, but my entire family. The house now felt empty, as it was just just mum and I, but over time i have realised that two homes are better than one.


I’ve also learnt it’s important to stop caring so much about what people think of me, how important it is to align myself with positive people, people who want me to do well, one of the things I’ve learnt to do, is if i had to look at my life right now, the things that took past this last year, I’ve asked myself, are there any people as i begin to look at my life and where i would like to go, are there any people that i may need to leave behind, because what i have found with that relationship is that it’s more toxic than what you first realised. It’s these decisions that I’ve had to make when I look at my future.


Over the past 5 years, I’ve learnt to never take life for granted, people for granted, things for granted. Forgive when you can, because life is short, cheesy but true and out of all the years in my life, last year was when i truly understood the meaning of that.Through the sickness of one of my best friends, to the death of another friend, to the loss of a family member, life is short, so live it to your best, it’s these simple things that can help you live a life less ordinary.


Join the conversation! 1 Comment

  1. Kiera, you could consider using this speech draft for your 3.4 Portfolio of writing, however, you would need to:
    1) Strengthen the word choice, expression and structure (making the construction more purposeful overall). Eliminate unnecessary repetition.
    2) You may wish to formalise some of the writing to make it more directive- see me if you need an example of this (I have additional resources which show speeches which have been adapted for written assessments).
    3) Make the writing technically accurate, carefully reading the piece out loud to find the pauses and necessary breaks.


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