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Growing Up, Glowing Up

Many of us look back at our freshman selves cringing at the thought of what was going through our head when we dressed, did our hair, or acted in a certain way. We sift through old pictures and videos asking ourselves just how we changed so quickly and drastically. Our only answer to our new […]

Growing Up, Glowing Up

Many of us look back at our freshman selves cringing at the thought of what was going through our head when we dressed, did our hair, or acted in a certain way. We sift through old pictures and videos asking ourselves just how we changed so quickly and drastically. Our only answer to our new beautified selves? Glow up.

Sydney and her brother on the first day of her freshman year.

According to Urban Dictionary, to have a glow up means to “have an amazing transformation”. The usual “glow up” happens between middle school and the end of high school. No matter what, everyone has a glow up in their life. Big or small, looks or personality, or maybe both, they happen and they can hit hard. We can go from dressing like 2007 Avril Lavigne to a 2017 Kendall Jenner in a span of 4 years; our glow up is obviously not as extreme, but for most of us it feels that way.

Although we don’t see it while it’s happening, once we look back at old Snapchat memories and Homecoming photos, we notice the differences like the evolution of the human species pictures we see in our freshman World History books.

Glow ups happen to everyone, and that was part of the problem to try to find only two people who exemplified this in such an extraordinary way when the entire senior class has had some kind of glow up. But after many intense debates in the Talon newsroom, input from other seniors, and examination of Instagram posts and yearbook pictures, a decision was whipped together in the span of two weeks. We concluded that Sydney Carlson (’19) and Graeme Farrell (’19) are the senior class’s biggest glow ups.

Sydney, her mom, and her brother at the 25th anniversary party of her dad’s company.

Sydney participates on the swim team and water polo team at CB, but describes her freshman year self as “pretty shy and not confident”. She finally made a decision that would make her feel better about her self and be the person she wanted to be.

“I wasn’t happy with who I was,” she says, “I totally changed my life during freshman year, and so I started changing myself. I started being more health conscious and getting into a healthier lifestyle. I went Vegan.”

Syd stresses the idea of trusting yourself, and knowing changes will happen in life.

“Whether you like it or not, we are going to walk out of here different people than who we walked in as, and that’s not something we need to be nervous about,” she explains. “If you are unhappy with who you are, it’s important to make healthy changes to get closer to where you want to be — just know that everything takes time.”

Even some of her close friends she has known since freshman have spotted some changes in her appearance and personality. Lana Jan (’19) commented on how her good friend is now more comfortable with herself than in previous years.

“When I first met Sydney she was super shy, and friendly, but she was really closed off,” Lana reflected. “Over the last two years, she’s broken out of her shell. She likes to hang out with everyone, and she’s made new friends with different friend groups.”

Poppy and Graeme at senior year homecoming (left), and freshman year homecoming (right).

Graeme Farrell, a buzz cut champ his freshman year, a shaggy goon his sophomore year, a flow god his junior year, and a cleaned up, combed and gelled back glow up king his senior year, finds his freshman self unrecognizable. He realized how much he has grown through the years in personality and remembers how young he really acted.

“I’ve matured more,” he joked. “And my hair is definitely a lot better now.”

Graeme has some regrets from his freshman year too as he recalled his past personality and appearance,

“Why did you have a buzz cut and you should have been way nicer,” he said to himself.

Poppy Ruyak (’19), a friend of Graeme’s since freshman year, commented on how his skills on the snow and field have improved through the years too.

“He has really become a good snowboarder, and great football player” she says.

Graeme and Sydney have developed on numerous levels these last four years and will continue thriving in the future. And to all the freshmen and sophomores out there eager to follow in Graeame and Syd’s footsteps, don’t worry — your glow is coming. As Graeme and Syd would say, “don’t rush the process”.

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