Traveling With the Doctor

A person grows through observation, through role models and firsthand experience. Every day we hear about heroes who protect people, about police getting the bad guy, or a doctor performing a risky surgery and saving someone’s life. As children, we also see a different kind of role model, the superheroes who save cities, the lovable sidekicks, and the villains who are sometimes only doing what they thought was best. These heroes from our childhood shape us as people before we even realize it, and one of them, the Doctor, helped craft me into the person I am today, intelligent, fun loving, and always looking for something new. The Doctor, main character of a science fiction show, is my hero.

Ask any one person what one event shaped their life the most. Most will tell you it was a birth or a death, or an event that many people will remember because it was happy or sad. The event that shaped my life the most was waking up early one Monday morning in January and flipping through the channels looking for something to watch before getting ready for school. I ended up watching my first episode of Doctor Who that day, and I was hooked, drawn in by the character of The Doctor and his charisma, his simplicity, and the mystery about him.

`Traveling through time and space with his Companions, never carrying a weapon except for a multipurpose tool, The Doctor was an adventurer and scientist; he is everything I desired to be. He always asked questions, always had a plan, or at least enough knowhow to think on the fly. He bested evil creatures and genocidal aliens, fought countless battles against oppression, injustice, and wrongdoing, and always saved the day.

At first it was merely the thought of his adventures that excited me. To travel the cosmos, or through time, is a dream I has always held dear. The thrill of discovering new things, of experimenting with ideas and knowledge beyond human comprehension fascinated me. In time, it grew from observation to wanting to bring pieces of that world into my own. I found myself acting more and more like The Doctor, always asking questions, always eager for more to learn.

I learned how to be self-sufficient, but I also learned how to depend on others in tough times. Little things began to change in me, ideas came together in new ways to solve problems, and the little stories I had taken to writing became epic tales of good and evil, pages upon pages of elaborate plots with unusual twists and characters that people fell in love with. The Doctor and his adventures sparked the flame of my creativity, and each day it has grown and flourished into an inferno and the flurry of scribbling about yet another tale.

But all this writing left me distracted from my school work, which wasn’t as good as it should have been in 11th grade as I branched out. I became VP of a school club and set up another outside of school, wrote and helped produce a play for my school, and started work on my as of yet incomplete novel. I was distracted, and tried to do too many things at once. I spread myself too thin and the wrong things suffered. Again the idea of traveling back in time appeared, this time with a new goal.

If I could travel through time with the Doctor, ignoring all possibilities of paradoxes or anything else, just the simple concept of time travel, I’d go back to before High School and tell myself that yes, it’s important to write and be creative, but also to explore knowledge while it’s available, to work hard in school for a brighter future for myself. I’d tell myself everything I know now, that until I get out of school I need to crack down on the books and get my grades up. And I’d tell myself over and over the importance of it all, until the me of the past has the same epiphany as I had, the idea of balance between schoolwork and my writing. I wouldn’t let either one suffer, just find a path in the middle that let me do both equally well.

All the self control and self motivation I have now would have served me very well back then, and it is my sincere hope that, despite my poor grades in the past, you can see me as I am now in the present, straining every fiber of my being to prove my worth and to push forwards into the future.

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