On a hot sunny day in Surprise, Arizona, seven-year-old Sydni is playing school with her brothers and sisters outside. “Alright class, recess is over, time to go inside.” As her brother and sister follow her into the den there are little tables with crayons and paper. This was Sydni’s dream job. And her dream would come true.
Born on February 6th, 1995 to her two loving parents, she grew up along with her brother and sister. Then her parents got a divorced, but she still had a supportive family. She became the oldest out of six when her mother, her idol, remarried and had more children, which probably made her the responsible person she is today.
High school brought Oliver to her life. Starting a story together that soon made them know each other at the same time they were finding themselves. High school finished and their relationship did too. Sydni thought that she needed to continue trying to find her place in this world dating other people, and Geovanni appeared. He was perfect, the man that the songs talk about, but things started to be toxic. He used to talk to her in a way that was degrading and not nice. He was the complete opposite of her. “I definitely lost myself.”
Three months of crisis. “After we had broken up, I literally couldn’t look at myself in the mirror without pointing out 10 different things about myself that I knew before we had gotten together.” Although it was the hardest moment of her life, she is thankful of the drama they went through because it made her realize that she had to find her way. With the guidance of her aunt, she understood that she was a worthy woman and they weren’t good to each other.
Actually, these kind of mistakes in life make us realize what we want and who we are. Maybe it had to happen to make Sydni know that Oliver had always been the most helpful person for her. So they ended up getting back together.
“To the moment he was going to the military I was like: he is not going to make it, not without me.”
As soon as college started, they got married and had their first child. She went to Grand Canyon University, a private Institute in Phoenix, as a nurse major. Circumstances made her change of idea a couple times, until she decided and graduated with a double major in English and dance, one of her passions that she discovered when she was twelve.
Things happen, and an injury made Sydni drop out of dance, which broke her heart. Now she doesn’t dance as much as she would like to, but it’s still important in her life.
She finished college even earlier than she had planned. She received her degree in December of 2016, and is currently working towards her masters.
“A lot of older teachers are stuck in their ways and they don’t really want to adopt to the new students that are coming in, the new generations, and I think because I am so close to your age I understand that you need different material, you need different ways of teaching, fun stuff, and it’s hard for older teachers to find it out.”
Another thing that cheered her up to become a teacher and a mother was that she thinks that everybody is important in this world, everybody has a story and everybody has the voice to tell that story. The problem is that people need courage to do it, and her goal is to be the person that gives them that courage.
Even though she loves to teach English she doesn’t however share the same love for reading. She prefers to do DIY and creative activities, but she admits that she’s always changing her hobbies. Although, she does have something very clear: “I want my kids to never doubt their abilities and just push themselves to do whatever they want to do, no matter what the fear may be, what the changes may be, or what the judgements may be.”
She is not afraid to let loose. She enjoys listening to music. Her favorite is country, but she also loves 90’s music. “That definitely gets me out of my mental funk.” But if she had to choose just one song it would be the one that sounded in her wedding, of course.
Just a year ago life brought Mrs. Ward to Churchland High School, when she was told that she had to teach drama. She had never been interested about theatre arts, until she knew her students and realized that the more you learn about it, the more you love it. They were the ones that introduced her in drama.
“Just do everything with love. You should be kind to everybody, no matter the circumstances.”
Life is going to bring even more good things and changes to Mrs Ward and her family, because, since her husband is in the military, they are going to move next year. She wants us to remember these words:
“When I leave Churchland, which is going to be next year, remember that high school is supposed to be the best four years of your life. When you get out of high school you are supposed to remember it. So just get involved and do the stuff that nobody else is doing because you are going to regret not doing it.”
Sydni Ward has definitely left, and will always leave, a lasting impression on Churchland High school and all of its students. More so her English and Drama students who have learned so much from this woman who still has so much to teach and give to the world. And even when she’s gone they will never forget how much she cared and listened to them. She is truly an inspiration.
“I’m definitely happy. The only thing I would change about my life would to not be so overwhelmed about the now, because everything that is happening now is supposed to lead up to my future, my end goal.”
PHOTO COURTESY: Mrs. Ward