Embracing the change


Photo Provided by Camila Zavala

Future Royals as Connellys circa 2020. (Photo Provided By: Camila Zavala ’23)

Camila Zavala, Staff Writer

Once upon a time (three years to be exact), in a land far, far away (Anaheim), Rosary and Servite had another sister school as part of their “tri-school”: Cornelia Connelly High School. Now, most grades at Rosary probably don’t know what I’m talking about– Connelly declared it would be closing its doors at the end of the 2019-2020 school year, during the seniors’ freshman year.

After the very shocking news was announced, the incoming freshman class at Connelly was left to somehow salvage their plans for the next three years. Ultimately, a lot of freshmen at Connelly, myself included, made the decision to transfer to Rosary for the remainder of high school.

I could’ve stayed upset about everything; it was pretty unfair. Just imagine having to suddenly start all over again only a year after you’ve made new friends and adjusted to life in high school. But I made myself grow up and embrace Rosary. I had a lot to be grateful for: most of my friends transferred with me and my parents could still afford to send me to private school.

But I will be honest, I had a very hard time adjusting. I stayed online for almost my entire sophomore year and only talked to a small rotation of two people. The combination of Covid and being a transfer made it very easy to be isolated, plus my mother had just moved us out to a different county, 40 minutes away from my childhood home.

At the end of sophomore year, things started to look a little bit up. I reconnected with a lot of girls from Connelly who felt the exact same way as me. I started to go out more and talk to more Rosary girls who weren’t transfers. By the time summer ended, I was actually excited for the next school year to start.

Of course, junior year is anything but easy. I was still adjusting, and to be honest, Rosary still didn’t feel entirely like home. But I finally started looking at myself like a Royal, not just as a transfer. That year, Red and Gold won my heart, and I cried my heart out when Red lost. That’s when I knew I really did belong at Rosary. And once again, at the end of the year and continuing into the summer, I opened up even more and embraced the friendship of some of the girls I love so much now.

Everyone says senior year goes by so fast, but what they don’t tell you is that your whole high school experience flies by too. Sometimes, I’ll look in the mirror and still see a brace-faced Connelly freshman looking back at me, afraid of the decision she knew she’d have to make. I know Rosary wasn’t always my home, and while I do truly doubt I will return as a staff member, I couldn’t have asked for a better school to save me from the uncertainty of the future. The Academy was my refuge, and I hope it has been for all of my senior sisters.