Dear J.R.R Tolkien,
As my mind bounces back to the first day of kindergarten, I remember looking into the classroom with a terrified look on my face. I was scared and afraid to try something new.
I was scared just like Bilbo Baggins, as he set out into a new adventure. As I was looking into that room, I looked at all the other terrified faces looking back at me and realized that I was not alone, just like Bilbo realized that he was not alone, but one difference was that I knew it right away and it took awhile for Bilbo to figure it out.
I looked for friends, or even people for me to look up to, but they were hard for me to find—just like Bilbo had a hard time finding close friends in his group of dwarfs. I looked for someone and found someone, just as Bilbo did. Her name was Elysia Stastny. She was a very good friend to me because when I was upset she would comfort me by bring me a teddy bear and save the day, just like Gandalf did for Bilbo. Gandalf reminds me of Elysia because she was strong and was always there for me.
Another major connection that I have with the book is that Bilbo gets a huge confidence boost when he saved the dwarfs late in his adventure. I also got a huge confidence boost when I hit first grade. The school and the people were familiar to me. Elysia knew that my time would come to shine and I would be outgoing and make friends, just like Gandalf knew that Bilbo was going to save the dwarfs. He didn't know where and didn't know how, just like Elysia.
As the years passed, I grew to have good relationship with other people. If I was going through a hard time in life Elysia would show up and be there for me, just like Gandalf came and went when Bilbo needed him.
In this book I see Bilbo learning and watching Gandalf. I see him finding himself by watching Gandalf show him the way. Elysia showed me the path to finding friends, building relationships and finding what I was good at, just as Gandalf did for Bilbo. I think that we all need someone like Gandalf or Elysia in our lives us show us the way.
In the end of this book I see Bilbo and Gandalf coming out to be friends rather than Gandalf being higher or more powerful. I think that Elysia and I also turned out that way too. When I was in eighth grade I would say that we grew closer and it almost felt like we were in kindergarten. When we were getting ready to go to high school, I helped her to make the decision to come to Iowa Mennonite School.
I think that in the long run Bilbo Baggins and I are very similar. First off we had a hard time finding friends and we both found one that stayed with us for a very long time.
In the end I think that in one way or another we are all kindergarteners. Nervous and scared to go into the world, but with the right guidance and good friendships we will all make it out okay; just as Bilbo and I both did.