Ria Xi

Beijing, China

If my life is a poem, my Delphian experience gave me the pen to write it. All of my life, I had a blank paper in front of me, but I had no idea what to do with it. I was interested in everything I laid my eyes upon, just like a child in a candy store. I became many people: an aspiring scientist, a burgeoning philosopher, even a nationally-ranked figure skater. I was a novice artist, an amateur musician, and a wannabe poet; I was a language enthusiast and a keen traveler.

   I was many people, yet I was no one. I was no Einstein, no Picasso, no Mozart. I dabbled in the countless things on my expansive list of interests and lost myself to my lack of accomplishment. I lost myself in comparing myself with others. I had no standard. I had no means of measuring my own value or strength, other than being stronger and faster, or by trying to be better when I compared myself to others. I was always so jealous. I was jealous of the fun, the kindness, the love and the greatness that I believed everyone else but me could achieve.

   After four years at Delphian, I was finally able to change this view. My potential grew with the nourishment that Delphian’s educational freedom and care provided me. By and by, I saw that I hold the power to create. I saw that I alone am capable of deciding who I am and who I will be. After four years at Delphian, I saw that it doesn’t matter if I’m Einstein or Mozart. I can be an artist, a journalist—anybody I want to be. Because all that matters is what I decide. I finally saw the immense possibility the world holds before me.

   From a fourteen-year-old who didn’t have the courage to look people in the eyes, I ventured far and became capable of overcoming barriers—whether my own or those presented by my environment. Now, I can create my own future no matter what the circumstances might be. Now, I can write the verses of my life.

   There is no better quote to summarize my Delphian years than to quote from Walt Whitman:

“Oh me! Oh life! of the questions of these recurring;

Of the endless trains of the faithless, of cities fill’d

with the foolish...What good amid these, O me, O life?

Answer. That you are here—that life exists and identity;

That the powerful play goes on, and you may contribute a verse.”