KIDS Issue 2017: Moving to Asheville

WHAT’S IN YOUR WATER? Asheville School juniors Stella Gregory, Savannah Fowler, Lily Formato and Nathan Alleyne collaborated on this artwork as part of a school project to examine a contemporary social issue that they believe needs immediate attention.

Editor’s note: This essay and artwork are part of Mountain Xpress’ Kids Issue 2017, our annual feature devoted to kids’ and teens’  art and writing. This year, we asked students to focus on the question “What Matters to Me?”

I moved across the country during my early elementary school years. I moved from my hometown, Los Angeles, Ca., to Asheville, N.C. It was a life-changing experience.

I hated it at first. First of all, it was a whole new environment. The weather was much more different. It was hot in LA and cold in Asheville. It felt like I was turning into an ice sculpture. Plus, LA is way bigger than Asheville! It was like moving into a walnut. Also, it was very depressing. Life in LA was smooth, then things got very busy and hectic. My parents got busy finding jobs and getting new houses. I felt like I never got to spend any time with them. And it wasn’t like I could hang out with a friend. I moved to a new school in the middle of the year, so everyone already was best friends with someone else. It was very complicated. I had no clue what to do.

If you’ve ever been in this same situation, it takes a lot of time to get used to. But I finally met silly, funny friends along the way who helped me, who had similar experiences. Since then, part of me even wanted to laugh all day. Even though a big part of me still wants to be in LA, I know that now that I like Asheville more than I did before.

— Tatum Shearer
Claxton Elementary, third grade


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