The Footsteps We Fill


Senior David Llanes and Mrs. Hartnett enjoy a game of Scrabble in the library.

A quick preface… I want to thank all of my teachers, especially Mrs. Hartnett and Mrs. Boddy, for really allowing me to grow into my best self. I would consider myself an “old soul” and you guys are just… old, so truly, thank you.

Congrats [to the class of 2022]! You’ve made it. Now… get off your seat, do it again, tack on a few more years for a Master’s, get a job, start a family, grow old and die! Ok, maybe not… I am quite certain that many of you here, like myself, have goals that scrape the sky, and maybe fears that one can’t fathom, however, I am also quite certain that some of us crave some relaxation, some time off, a year or two in the silver beaches of Fiji. You know what though, what if, now hear me out, you get both!

Kinda hard to believe, but all you have to do is click the little button on the bottom left of your screen, add a background, put your feet up on your desk, and BOOM, a simple reminder that you’re really not there. Shoot. Ok… maybe we don’t get both.

Then how do we give our lives meaning? Well, there really is just one way to look at it… yes, we must strive to reach our goals, but also to fill the footsteps of those who came before us.

As a student at Prairie Ridge, I’m sure we did some excellent things this year! Even though I can’t pull a Gracie Willis and do a double backflip with a triple twist, and I sure can’t play basketball like Karsen Karlblom, I am certain that we all strive to reach that day when we’ll do something truly phenomenal and feel that sense of pride… And I hope that we can all witness each other’s victories, and truly give each other the pats on the back that we deserve.

That’s Fiji!

As cliche as it may sound, it’s true! Though we aren’t reclining on a literal hammock, accompanied by an Amazonian goddess like Paige Annen, sipping some coconut water as we watch the sunset, we still have each other, a robust community of people I know I can always turn to in order to feel that sense of pride and achievement.

So you know what, yes, get off your seat, and stop obsessing over the things that you cannot do, and focus on the things you know you WILL do.

Fill in the footsteps of those who came before you, believe in yourself, and treasure your community, the community that loves you to death and will always be there to keep that Wolf Pride alive.