My First Alpha Wolf 11 Experience

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My hands became shaky as I held the Russian flag, about to walk out in front of everyone who attended Wyoming High school. A pit in my stomach appeared as I thought about all the comments that were going to be made because of where I was born. On February 25th, 2022, I attended my first alpha wolf 11 assembly and it was different. Very differently actually, I never experienced anything like this at my old school. I ended up participating in the assembly for the flag tradition, and that’s basically where students who were not born in America, carry their flag around the gym, showing their heritage and where they came from.
I came from Russia, and I was hesitant about carrying my flag because of the war that is happening between Russia and Ukraine. I talked to many teachers about it and how I felt. I started to become embarrassed and ashamed about where I came from, all because of a war that happened that I never had anything to do with. The flag tradition was supposed to show off all the different cultures and heritages we have here, to see all these unique students and all these countries they were from, but with me?
That didn’t happen. Instead comments were made, and I felt like trash for carrying a flag that represents where I’m from, but instead, people thought I was carrying the flag to represent the war that my home country has started. It hurt, when I first came to this school, no one had an issue with me being Russian, a lot of people thought it was cool and would always ask me to say certain things in Russian and teach them Russian.
Then a war happened, and people started treating me like I had something to do with the war, like I magically had an influence on it. Ever since the war happened, I’ve been told nasty things and offensive things. I got told to control my president, go back to where you came from, it’s my fault if they get drafted to war, and the worst one of all, I got told, I hope your happy innocent people are dying because of your country. My country? I’ve been in America for a very long time. Russia is where I came from, I never considered it MY country, America is my country, not Russia, and apparently no one can understand that.
Besides the flag tradition at the assembly, everything else was beautiful. I enjoyed it. I almost shed a few tears because of how amazing it was to see teachers and students appreciated for things that they do to make Wyoming and students’ lives better and feel more welcoming. It was truly amazing to see a school all come together to appreciate everything that has been done here to make life a little easier, from students taking care of students to teachers taking care of their students and making sure they feel their best everyday. I think my favorite thing about the assembly was just seeing everyone have a smile on their face and really be able to enjoy the moment and not having to stress about life.
The assembly was a way for all of us to come together and appreciate each other and just have a good time overall and that’s something that was so beautiful to see for me. Another thing I really enjoyed was the energy that everyone had. Every day at school, I see most kids with their headphones in, and heads down.
At the assembly I saw mostly everyone laughing, smiling, dancing and even singing the songs that were being played. I think the assembly is a way for students to enjoy the small things and not have to stress about school but to let loose and realize how many good people and things are here at Wyoming High School. I mean, I definitely saw it myself and it was a good feeling to see everyone happy instead of their heads down and ignoring everyone.
Overall, I would rate my experience a 8/10, If the flag tradition went better for me, it would definitely be a 10/10, but because I didn’t have the best support and the greatest feeling about that part, it definitely made it not the happiest moment for me but it didn’t ruin everything. It truly was something that I wouldn’t want to miss out on and hopefully the next few assemblies I will have here will be better and a way for me to enjoy who I am and where I came from.