O Captain, My Captain

When I was 13 years old, I was debilitatingly shy, doubted all praise, and was catastrophically inept in the social sphere. This was made worse by moving to a new town, where I coped by diving deeper into myself, melting into the wallpaper, and spending three hours a night immersed in the written word: pen pals, story-writing, books, and journalling -- my safety zone.

That year, in 1989, Dead Poets Society was released. I was initially excited because, hey, it was a film about young school boys, and what 13-year-old girl wouldn't want some of that, ehhhhh? But when I actually sat down and made it through the two hours, I. was. floored. Finally, I had found kinship with someone, Todd Anderson (Ethan Hawke), a bumbling background weed, who just needed a teacher like Mr. Keating (Robin Williams) to smack him in the head, pull him out of the shadows, and make him realize that everyone was a player on the stage. Throughout high school, I watched that film over 30 times for inspiration from Mr. Keating, and by grade 13, eventually laid the foundation for my personal voice and began to take a stand for things I truly believed in.

There's not much more to add, other than: O'Captain, My Captain. Thank you.