Parents seem to agree that it’s a little nerve-wracking letting someone hold your baby for the first time. What if they drop it? What if, from no fault of their own, it won’t stop screaming no matter what they do? Despite all this, you know you can’t just sit there, refusing to let anyone else take care of it.
However exaggerated the metaphor may be, it’s the best way I can explain how it feels to know I’ll be handing over the reigns here at The Bengal very soon.
As sad as I will be to leave the fantastic group of people that make up this paper, I know The Bengal will be in good hands. It’s official and everything. Next year’s editor-in-chief has been selected. You know him as Andrew, the news editor. I know him as Scott, my little brother.
Yeah, I guess you could say it runs in the family.
Growing up, my brother and I fought. Constantly. He once hairsprayed my eyes closed. I probably deserved it.
Despite that, we’ve always had each other’s backs. Like the time the football players wanted to haze him as a freshman in high school, and I told them to think again while he peered from behind my shoulder and yelled “she’s gunna kick your ass!!” Like the time he totally shut down someone who sent me nasty Facebook messages. Like now, as we both prepare to face big new things in our lives.
My brother and I have always had our own strengths and weaknesses. He was a nationals-qualifying debater. I blushed stuttered my way through speech class and called it good. I did yearbook, photography and art. I also helped him get through his art projects. I excelled in Spanish while he excelled in medical terminology.
That’s part of why it’s weird when people ask if I’m excited he is following in my footsteps. Well, yes and no. I’m thrilled that he’s taking this challenge on, but believe he’s following in neither my footsteps nor my shadow.
I heard a quote the other day that said true leaders don’t create followers. They create more leaders. I’ve tried my best to be that kind of leader to my staff.
Have I made an impact on any of these lovely people? I’m not arrogant enough to say I have, but I’ve tried to make a positive one. This staff is made up of many smart, passionate leaders. Scott is one of them. Next year’s paper will be different, and it will be great. Together, he and the rest of the staff will create a brand new set of footsteps. I for one can’t wait to see what they do.
It’s been such a pleasure watching my brother transform from an unsure staff writer to a killer news editor to the incoming editor-in-chief. I know I’m able to move on and be sure this paper will continue to be a voice for its students. It will keep fighting the good fight as real journalism becomes harder and harder to identify. It will continue to report on the good, the bad and the ugly. I have no doubt in my mind. He won’t drop the baby.