Making Like Lavender: Sarah Metzger

Photo+courtesy+of+Sarah+Metzger

Photo courtesy of Sarah Metzger

Sarah Salling, Staff Writer

When asked about one’s favorite flower, a lavender plant is not typically what comes to mind for most. However, Sarah Elizabeth Metzger is not most people. This “bright, friendly, energetic” person—according to Trisha Dunn, Magnet Director—names it their favorite, mainly for its calming properties.

Sarah Metzger has come far as a theatre magnet sophomore here at Patapsco High School and Center for the Arts, with a 4.0 GPA and, notably, serving as a member of BOSS (Board of Selected Students). BOSS is a collection of students from middle and high schools throughout the county who are selected by a student vote to serve as an intermediary between student councils and school administrations, for student life and needs. Through this program, Sarah is able to organize charities, fundraisers, advocacy, and awareness of important issues. One institution Sarah has fundraised for is Kennedy Krieger’s Center for Autism and Related Disorders. In fact, her aunt holds fundraisers to cut and donate hair to Kennedy Krieger. Topics discussed at BOSS meetings include student life, infrastructure, general services, environmental concerns, and more. Being involved in BOSS has made Sarah realize her power. Altogether, to Sarah, BOSS means “Getting active in your community.” This outlook is amazing, but it gets better when seen in the context of the challenges Sarah faces in daily life.

Photo courtesy of Sarah Metzger

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder that causes enlarged ovaries with cysts on the outer edges. PCOS can bring about symptoms like a lower voice, more hair, bleeding, etc. For Sarah, PCOS “has been painful and makes me question my femininity and self-image.” Yet this is not all she has dealt with. Growing up with an eating disorder, specifically anorexia, takes a toll on anyone. For Sarah, this experience has been compounded by the fact that a family member that she looks up to has also struggled with an eating disorder alongside her. Of course, an eating disorder alone does not define a person. Sarah’s friend Mea Cellitto, a fellow sophomore and member of the theatre magnet, describes Sarah as “outgoing, talented, and smart.” Mea believes Sarah is very independent while also looking out for others’ best interests. She says Sarah uses herself to protect other people. Trisha Dunn is a similarly enthusiastic fan of Sarah. When Dunn met Sarah, she was shadowing the magnet program as a middle schooler. “I liked her immediately,” Dunn says. Dunn believes that Sarah should be proud of her amazing grades and acknowledges that most people would not know this about Sarah because she does not like to boast. “[Sarah] has the attitude to succeed at anything she wants,” Dunn says, adding that she would have wanted to be friends with Sarah in high school. Ms. Dunn is Sarah’s favorite teacher because they match each other’s sarcasm and can joke around with each other. But, as Dunn explains, when there is teasing, it is done out of love.

Photo courtesy of Sarah Metzger

Sarah says that she has grown a lot, and that growth is an extremely important value in life. She mentions having five siblings, one of whom has autism spectrum disorder (ASD) as well as bipolar disorder; accommodating his health issues while simultaneously coping with her own can be stressful. Sarah uses the theatre magnet as a stress reliever and as a way to have a home away from home. “I use theatre as an escape from the hardships I felt with family. I coped by projecting myself into my character and falling in love with a different narrative,” Sarah says. Through the dust and dirt, Sarah continues to grow toward the sun, like her favorite lavender flower. Through clear skies and rainy days alike, Sarah has thrived and still thrives today, leaving a positive impression on people. In the words of Trisha Dunn: “I wish there were more students like Sarah.”