Fighting A Pacifist’s Battle

Rely on yourself to survive high school battlefield


Walking into high school, I had a philosophy built up in my mind on how life worked. Life is a battleground, and people are the soldiers. There are commanders and generals, lieutenants and corporals. There are snipers and medics, enemies and allies. I think this sudden epiphany was heavily influenced by “Hacksaw Ridge,” my favorite movie  which coincidentally came out in 2016.

  I knew which of my friends were soldiers (there to just follow orders and fight the fight), which were medics (there to support the wounded and heal the hurt), which were generals (there to give the commands and gather the troop), and which were snipers (Kamryn Yach. There’s not much more explanation beyond that.)

  I saw every assignment as a war, and every person as a rank. I thought that, by accepting this analogy, it would make tackling everything that much easier. But, what am I? It was a question I struggled to answer. I blended into every niche, and had no set personality. Some knew me as being a hard-headed boss, others knew me as an anxious scholar. Some knew me by my title as editor-in-chief, some knew me as the timid first chair. Eventually, I realized what my place was in this war called life.

  I was a pacifist forced to fight for a cause I didn’t believe in. A pacifist who felt forced to be someone she wasn’t. At all times, I felt pressured to be strong and confident. I felt pressured to be obedient and happy.

  Strangely enough, it wasn’t my medics or commanders or fellow soldiers who broke this illusion I had built up. My friends weren’t the ones to drag me out of the shell of a soldier I had wrapped myself in.

  It was me. It was me being alone, walking by myself, talking to myself, writing for myself. It was when I stopped texting and posting religiously on social media. It was when I stopped listening when people talked bad about others, and when I stood up for those I thought were undeserving of harsh words.

  There is no inaccuracy in my analogy–life truly is a battle. There is always a new enemy, always new allies, always a new reason to keep going. But you don’t draw strength by relying on whatever troop or commanders you have in your life. You draw strength from yourself.

  Your battles will always be changing, your platoon will always be changing. The only thing that will remain with you until the war ends is yourself. So learn to draw strength from yourself, rely on yourself, and most importantly, take care of yourself. Maybe then this life will feel less like a battle and more like a blessing.