By Kev Moyé For LEGACY Inc.
There are a multitude of words and terms which can be used to appropriately define exactly what “life” is.
Typically, the word “fair” is not among those depictions.
Unfortunately, life can be unwavering in its oppression. Life can be merciless in its cruelty. Nevertheless, if the trials and tribulations are handled in an astute manner – they can alter the existence of an individual for the better.
On a daily basis, Shanna Buschmann proves that today’s adversity can create a star of tomorrow.
“She’s now shining and has done a lot of things on her own. She’s shown the ability to be independent,” said her mother, Karen Buschmann. “She’s made a lot of accomplishments on her own.”
Shanna is the poster-child for how tough situations can breed a special, well-rounded person.
A recent graduate of Ruskin High School, Buschmann finished with a 4.0 grade point average. As a student at the south Kansas City institution, she was a member of the tennis team, National Honor Society, and president of the student council.
In regard to serving her community, Buschmann has volunteered at Wayside Waifs Animal Shelter, the Kansas City Soup Kitchen, and is scheduled to provide her services to St. Joseph Medical Center this summer.
“It is very important for me to help out others. I love seeing others smile, especially when they are going through the obstacles of life,” she stated. “It makes me smile when others are happy.
“I just want to be remembered as a person who made a difference in the world. It all comes from the life I’ve lived and being motivated to be a better person than I was the day before.”
Two developments perfectly detail Buschmann’s genuine commitment to service.
For starters, the humanitarian took a mentally disabled cohort to prom.
“I can’t really explain why I took him to prom. I just know it was something I wanted to do. I wanted my prom experience to be a memorable one,” she said, “I wanted to know that I helped someone out. It was my giving, cheerful nature that influenced me to do it. I did it for him.”
Additionally, she has provided clothing for a student who had served as a nuisance in her life.
“There was one student who Shanna really didn’t like. But, she found out that he was homeless,” the widow stated. “So she wanted to take some of her brother’s clothes – that he had outgrown – to the young man. I told her that she was more than welcomed to do that. Even though this guy was her enemy, Shanna wanted to do that for him.”
Buschmann is passionate about assisting individuals who are in need. The aspiring veterinarian and model has lived in a magnanimous manner since she was a toddler. However, there’s a disheartening difficulty that has impacted her fancy to give more than anything else. And that trying ordeal is, bullying.
Yes – someone who’s devoted her life to helping others smile, has been subjected to the vile actions of mean-spirited bullies.
“I had been bullied in school up until my senior year. I’m a person who has been pushed into the lockers, and hid inside the bathroom,” she somberly admitted. “I’ve been physically, emotionally, and verbally bullied. It kills me to know how mean people can be. It bothers me a lot.”
Buschmann used athletic endeavors as a refuge from the constant harassment.
“I got rid of my anger and stress from the bullying in two ways. Either I’d go out to the tennis court and serve some balls, or I’d go running,” she said. “Each day at 9 p.m. I like to go running. That’s one of my favorite ways to get rid of stress. While I’m running, I’m not thinking about the foolishness. Going on a run is one of the ways I took care of the bullying.”
The persecution Buschmann received was not exclusive to her time at Ruskin. Even while attending a private school, she was a regular target of bullies.
“Ever since she was in the second grade, she’s been bullied. At the catholic school she went to, I brought it to the attention of the principal and counselor,” Mrs. Buschmann said. “It wasn’t easy dealing with it. All I could do is hold her, hug her, and tell her to try and be positive and figure out a smart way to deal with it.
“When she got to high school, I actually thought the bullying had stopped. She never said anything about it. So I actually thought it had stopped.”
Buschmann even had to remove herself from a school organization due to being in close proximity to one of her antagonizers.
“Last year, she had to quit an activity because of the bullying,” Mrs. Buschmann acknowledged. “I just told her it’s not worth it.”
Eventually, Mrs. Buschmann had enough of seeing her daughter’s anguish. Thus, she advised her child to take a different approach to the situation.
“I told Shanna that she has to begin to stand up for herself,” she stated. “I couldn’t do too much. I would just continue to tell the teachers and the principals about it.”
Buschmann being the savvy person she is, found a way to handle the bullies and things began to improve. Recalling how downtrodden she felt while being bullied, Buschmann has taken the cruelty of her peers and transformed it into motivation to help those who are often shunned by society.
“I just want to help out in the world the best I can. I want to make the world a better place and help it as much as possible,” she said. “It’s part of my nature, I love to help people.
“Everybody has their bad days, but having someone there to help out can make a person’s life better.”
In hindsight, she doesn’t hesitate to admit that the bullying has actually made a positive impact in her life.
“The bullying, it has influenced me a lot,” Buschmann said. “Everything related to being bullied motivates me, as I know this world must become a better place.”
Buschmann is determined to be a conduit to worldwide change. She knows that regardless of the background, many of the people we interact with are hurting, stressed out, and in need of assistance.
Though what she’s had to overcome has been unfair, Buschmann rose above the chaos and is destined to continue her evolution into a shining star.
“She has not had an easy life. She’s survived and has learned to deal with tough situations. This hasn’t been easy for her,” Mrs. Buschmann said. “She’s been through a lot of nonsense, the last two years especially. But through it all, especially this year, she has progressed.”