New kid, no problem

Freshman starts at a new school, again


photo by Jasmine Hermosillo-Padilla

Freshmen Rachael Heaton sits in the bleachers of Wildcat 1 during the Wildcat Welcome on the first day of school.

William Heaton, Staff Reporter

Everyone dreads their freshman year, but there is nothing more daunting than starting that year in a brand new state. Freshman Rachael Heaton has tackled the new school hurdle five times.  

As long as she can remember, Heaton has been moving every year, or every few years. She has lived in the northern corners of the continental United States, living up in New York as well as Washington. The longest she stayed in one spot was six years, that being in New York. In both corners, she was right on the border of Canada, so she took weekend trips up with her family. The places that she’s lived have been hot, cold, wet and dry. 

“Oklahoma was my favorite place, I have a lot of great friends there and great relationships with a lot of people,” Heaton said. “I’m so glad that we all have our phones so we can always call each other and talk whenever.”

The people she met and the friends she made defined her experience living in each state. Heaton believes that everyone should try to get out and see the country. Her friends have all influenced her personality and shaped her into who she is now. 

 Millard West is the sixth school she has attended, so by now she is a professional at the new school gig. She has met many more people than she would have otherwise, but some of the struggles of starting again remain. Each time it gets a bit easier, because she has her friends from back home to help her adjust. 

“The hardest part about starting at a new school is learning the layout of the school and making new friends,” Heaton said.

The struggles at each new location are generally the same. She has to figure out “the layout of the building” at every school, which is a tough task even without the thousand kids swarming the halls. That can be daunting, but readjusting is a task she is quite used to by now. 

A question that she is often asked is if given the option to go back to when she was younger and not move around, would she. Her answer is no. 

“I love all the friendships and relationships I’ve built throughout the years,” Heaton said. “And I can’t wait to see all of my friends when I go back there again.”

She met her best friend back in Oklahoma, but if she had never moved there, the two of them never would have met. Leaving her, and her other friends, back in Oklahoma was tough, but she is enjoying her time at Millard West.