There is a delicate balance between succeeding in life after college and failing. The tipping of the scale is affected by a multiplicity of factors. Personal decision-making has an enormous impact on our success, and the ability to make the best use of the opportunities that are availed to us at different stages of our lives. Luke had already got something to hold on as a teenager because he was a wrestler with a state title. However, he uses his talent in the wrong way but being unruly and engaging in fights.
He was wrong to have injured his schoolmate so severely, “Bo’s left eye was swollen shut, like a piece of fruit that had been left in the sun to spoil” (Bliss, 2018, p.26). From this narrative, I learn that how we chose to act can affect the people around us negatively. Undoubtedly, personal decisions have to affect our lives as well as others. As a result, it is imperative to make the right choices while in college. Luke and Toby had been very close friends from their childhood. They even shared the same vision about leaving their seemingly unfortunate town where there a lot of things seemed to be wrong. They plan to capitalize on Luke’s wrestling scholarship, after which they will never go back to the same place they had been. However, they spirally drift apart with quite a lot of issues stacked against them.
There is especially so much wrong with their families and the kind of parentage they got as teenagers.
Joining college marks the beginning of a new life. Toby’s and Luke’s story is entirely related to the beginning of college life. “Come fall, Toby would follow Luke to college’’ (Bliss, 2018, p. 21). It involves some uncertainty regarding what happens in college because they would have had none of such an experience in their life. Toby had no idea how they’d pay rent or buy food (Bliss, 2018, p. 21). College life is defined by the development of independence and personal decision-making which determines the kind of life a student would live in college and the impact on academic outcomes.
I love being in charge of my life. At times, we have to think critically about how much in control we are of our lives. Friends and general associates are a fundamental part of the ecosystem in which we may thrive, or sometimes fade to oblivion. This situation is the exact one in which Toby found himself, luckily he came to the thought, “What if I just blew it all up?” (Bliss, 2018, p. 344). Blowing up does not sound like something an individual would like to be doing in every ordinary day. However, tradeoffs are the only option you have in some situations. For, instance, in this case, Toby had a feeling that his best friend was about to put him in a serious predicament.
In my personal view, I consider that you are in control of your life when you can do something that leaves the folks around you thinking about your true intentions. In such cases, it means that you acted under the control of your impulses that determine the person you are and the values that you stand for you have about something out of reach of your family and relatives. Anecdotally, there are times that I have wondered about how I came to be in a particular predicament. This situation is more a function of what we are as persons than what the current situation means to us. In life, I have learned that our comfort zones do not do us as much good as if we independently and critically thought about the actions that can improve our life.
I understand that personal independence is remarkably important for people who wish to make a real impact in their lives, and even more critical to the lives of other people. One of the sheriffs handling the case between the teenagers said “I am not about to tell another man how to raise his kid …” (Bliss, 2018, p. 348). I reckon that there is profoundly much maturity in a sheriff. Hearing this statement t from a sheriff would make me think so much about the importance of personal independence in college. It is difficult to leave home, but when a person feels about the new skills to be gained, leaving home for college becomes the best option.
In my case, going home was not easy. Nevertheless, I still consider attending university as one of the most monumental steps in personal development. The sheriff told the other man it was not possible to dictate how he was going to raise his kids. At first, I felt that leaving home was quite difficult for me. However, this negative feeling was assuaged by the realization that I was getting a lifetime chance of learning new skills and acquiring new values. Then, I was happy to have entered the portal leading to fruitful education and career. Most importantly, I was elated that I had got a chance of gaining more self-sufficiency.
When I joined college, I knew that I had to remain independent because that is the only way that I could achieve my dreams. Independence is such an essential attribute in college. In the initial year of life, I have learned that a person has to consider the level of impact the external environment has on their lives. Essentially, college calls for students to exercise critical decision-making.
The “We’ll fly away’ has given me a chance to recap the importance of critical decision-making. This value restrains students from engaging in problematic behaviour which can imperil their education. Luke overlooked prudence hence wound as problematic. They fought and I have also learned about the nature of friendships. Luke and Toby had a very close friendship, so strong that Toby could not report a wrong done by Luke, “…Toby wouldn’t say a word to implicate Luke’’ (Bliss, 2018, p. 345).
However, Toby should have acted proactively and tracked Luke while he was making the wrong direction. Eventually, the friendship comes to an unfortunate end with Luke being incarcerated. Nevertheless, the friendship between Toby and Luke and how the wind down the irrevocable path teaches me the importance of empathy and not judging others. Their lives were complicated. Toby had an abusive father, and Luke’s mother was unreliable.
The college has taught me about social diversity and the implications it has on our lives. The effects of societal factors like family, and its structure and nature, are also illustrated in the lives of Luke and Toby. At Texas A&M University, I have come across different personalities hailing from different geographical locations. The students are from different ethnic backgrounds and cultures. In this case, I had to make personal decisions regarding how to conform to acceptable norms and ethics. I have a longstanding rodeo experience from where I have learned a lot about how to interact with people of diversity. It starts with knowing how to relate to the people competing against you. This experience has also taught me about how to treat the people who look up to you, that is the fans. In college, I have learned to apply the three Rs of rodeo, namely respect, roping and respect. Roping tells me that I have to apply the best level of skill in whichever thing that I am doing.
As a result of this attribute, I am ever cognizant of the need to offer value to my company of friends and associates. Much of the situation that Toby and Luke are involved has to do with respect for parenting. The interaction of the Sheriffs. From this experience, I have learned that parents play a pivotal role in personal development. In most cases, parents are in touch with a dimension that is not understood by young people. There is a possibility that parents understand us more than we think we do.
I have the perception that “We’ll Fly Away” has great lessons about parentage. Luke and Toby are high school senior students trying to extricate themselves from their neglectful and abusive parents. However, while doing so, they undertake decisions that culminate in tragedies. They had been best friends since childhood and had grand plans for their future. Luke had a wrestling scholarship, and Toby intended to study in the same institution. The plans are scuttled through the conviction of Luke and the subsequent death sentence.
The book depicts how true friendship should be. Luke continues to communicate with Toby from prison; hence the friendship between the two youths was not affected by the apparent severe derailment. From a personal perspective, I believe that socializing and making friends is an essential part of life. You have add value to your friend’s life. Luke was of value to Toby. Luke had a wrestling scholarship and Toby intended to capitalize on that chance and join the same university as Luke. In this regard, I try as much to be helpful to the people within my social circle. Friendship is so important that in some cases friends have shared dreams and aspirations. I share similar aspirations with the students undertaking agribusiness management degree.
We all want to carve out a career as well as a professional niche in the same field. As a result, it is important to work in solidarity and as friends also. We have diverse capabilities which complement one
another and there are higher benefits in working as a team. In certain cases, friends provide a sense of identity. Toby and Luke stuck together because they were from the town and socioeconomic backgrounds, they faced the same challenge of a dysfunctional family. They felt that the situation in their town was extremely hard hence leaving was the best option they had.
Bliss, B. (2018). We’ll Fly Away by Bryan Bliss. Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books,