Graduation. Yes, it’s happening. Finally. I’ve been waiting years for this, 12 and a half of them, to be exact. But I never realized how difficult graduating was actually going to be. Just like most of you, I thought that after I finished my exams, I would be able to relax and wait for graduation day. Sadly, it’s nothing like that.

We’ll start with the thing that most people enjoy if they get them: awards. Because I was involved with my school way too much, I got a multitude of them. But that means I had to attend more awards ceremonies than I’d like. It’s not that I don’t like the ceremonies — because they always have food (which is the greatest). It’s that there are way too many. I like being awarded, obviously, but there’s only so many you can go to before it feels tedious. This week alone, I had three to attend. Not only that, but I love supporting my friends with their awards so attending them and staying for my friends is really important. Therefore, I spend a lot of time at these events.

The next thing that graduating stands for is tests. All of them. Physics, public affairs, English — you name it. In order to graduate you have to obviously pass all of your classes, but at the end of the year there’s finals. And a lot of them. Luckily for me, I got to test out of the Econ final, but Physics? No way. Instead of just having one AP exam, we had to have a midterm in May, an OCC Final (apparently we had registered for another college course) and the regents in June. So that’s four exams for one class! And while I love my teachers dearly, testing me on the same material over and over again hasn’t helped me one bit.

Another thing, grad parties. A lot of my friends have decided to have their grad parties before graduation or right after. On the day after graduation, I have 12 grad parties to attend. The same day that I have work for eight hours. Talk about stressful! The good thing is a lot of them will have food and I will be able to see all of my friends, but the time spent in the car to go from one place to the next is definitely a struggle.

And last, but not least, thanking the teachers. While of course I want to thank them for all the hard work that they’ve done, there are a lot of them. My mom told me I should write letters for all of them and include my senior picture, but that means I have to write a multitude of letters. And that means more writing for me. I love my teachers, I swear I do, but handwriting 15 letters can get a little bit tedious.

So yes, I am graduating, with honors and with tassels galore. But everyone forgets to tell you about all the stuff you have to do right after you finish your last day of school. Even with all the plans you have to make, the jobs you have to have over the summer, understand you’ve got about three months to make more memories. The weeks before graduation will be stressful, but hey, if I can do it, so can you.

Lead Image Credit: Jasmine Miller