A Day In The Life: Family is Key


Photo Ashlea Daniels

Sporting a tribal print shirt, Kristal Hill (’18) laughs at a friend. Hill describes herself as energetic and colorful, like the clothing she chooses to wear.

Ashlea Daniels , Profiles Assistant Editor

Arriving at the bowling alley, Kristal Hill (’18) is sure she’s about to beat her family in this game.

“Let your little brother win, Kristal,” her parents tell her.

“No, I want to win,” she replies.

As the game progresses, Hill can tell that despite her best efforts, she is going to lose to her brother. The feelings of agitation mount.

“I won, I won,” declares her brother.

Defeated, she caves and joins in. “Yeah, you won.”

Sibling rivalry is typical in most families, but the Hill family is anything but typical.  Growing up, Hill was shaped not only by her unique personality, but also her brother’s Down Syndrome.

“We don’t act a certain way because of it, we just say, ‘Hey, you can do everything so be you,'” she said. “I’ve never seen him as any different because it would be weird if he wasn’t the way he is. I don’t know how I would respond to life any other way.”

I say exactly what I mean. It doesn’t matter how bad or good it is”

— Kristal Hill ('18)

Hill applies her matter-of-fact nature to all aspects of her life.

When Hill walks in to the room, the first thing about her that people notice is her freckles. All she notices is that being black and having freckles is an unlikely combination.

“I don’t like them but everyone else does, so why not embrace them,” Hill said.

Unlike the typical teenage girl, Hill’s personality is best described as blunt. Others might shy away from saying outright that someone’s shirt is ugly or that someone’s eyeliner is uneven, but she doesn’t hesitate when it comes to speaking her mind.

“I come off shy when you first meet me, but after I’m really outgoing, energetic and loud,” Hill said. “I don’t really hide anything, I say exactly what I mean. It doesn’t matter how bad or good it is.”

Although her words may sound harsh at times, that doesn’t prevent those who love her from seeing beyond her candid nature.

Kristal’s father Parrish said, “[She] has a gifted ability to use words purposefully in order to gain an insight for many opportunities that she has experienced.”