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The LEAP Student Blog

Kai Burgman North Thurston HS | Life's Best Teacher


Author: Kai Burgman  
Grade: Junior
School: North Thurston
Mascot: Rams
League: South Sound Conference 3A
Classification: 3A

Life's Best Teacher

Everyone, at some point in their life, has had a mentor. Someone to guide them, to help them reach their goals. All of us, however, share one mentor- failure. Failure is one thing that everyone can relate to; throughout life everyone experiences failure. Of course no one enjoys failure and there is a tendency to over-exaggerate its negative aspects, 

many people tend to view failure simply as them being denied what they wanted, but failure should not be viewed as well, a failure, but as an opportunity to grow.

I recently had my own run in with failure, and at the time, I could not imagine anything worse. I am a wrestler for my school (North Thurston High School), and during my sophomore season I had placed 8th in the state in my weight class (220lbs). I was fairly happy with my performance, but I left determined to come back the following year and earn a higher ranking. After a grueling year of weight training, summer camps, morning workouts, practices, and endless conditioning; I made my second appearance at the dome. Given the subject of this blog, you can probably see where this is going… I entered eager to show how much I had grown and how much my hard work had paid off, but I left`disappointed. I had desperately wanted to place in the top 3 in order to qualify for the Fargo nationals; however I failed to even make the second day, losing to the future 1st and 3rd placers. Despite all of the hard work I had put in, and the leaps and bounds I had made as a wrestler, the tournament did not end how  I wanted it to end.

At first I was angry and upset because all my hard work was “meaningless”, but then I realized that this was just a bump in the road (albeit a rather large one). And soon I was overcome with a desire to improve myself further to make sure that all the effort I had put in up to this point had not been for naught. My coach and I discussed other ways to qualify through freestyle wrestling, and I realized that my loss was not a sign of hopelessness, but rather a sign that showed me what I needed to do in order to improve myself to have the best odds come the national tournament, as well as a chance to improve not only as an athlete but also as a person.

Upon my coaches urging a joined a club freestyle team that he helps coach for (Reality Sports). After about a month of freestyle training we attended the Pacific Northwest Regionals (a qualifying tournament for Fargo) and I am proud to say that I placed 3rd and will be moving onto Fargo. And I will continue trying to place myself in the best position I can to succeed, while realizing that win or lose, there is something to be gained from each result. Ultimately, everyone fails, and no one wants to,  but failure should not discourage you, rather failure should motivate you and be used as a learning experience to help insure future successes.


April 2018

4/19/2018 Anayeli Trejo Bridgeport HS | Life in a Small Town
4/13/2018 Kai Burgman North Thurston HS | Life's Best Teacher
4/5/2018 Eddie Rojas Lake Washington HS | Why Sports and Activities are So Important

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