As we all know, high school ends. The thing not everyone thinks about is that high school can end with a bang and not with a whimper. As a student who started her high school experience as a very meek, cynical and quiet human being, I realized that as I forced myself out of my comfort zone, I had accumulated a ton of really great memories and friends that I know I’ll hold on to forever.
Let me run through a brief overview of my first three years of high school. As the last few weeks of school approached, it was always extremely freeing because it meant I got a summer away from people I told myself I couldn’t relate to. I was very cynical and pessimistic about the high school experience as a whole despite being involved in a number of activities. I was surrounded by loud and extroverted people in theatre, I was thrown into a very reserved group of students in my school’s orchestra and the summer before my senior year as well as throughout my senior year I was a manager for the football team. All in all, I was a well-rounded student, I just hated stepping out of my safety zone.
As the final months of senior year turned into weeks and the weeks turned into days, I realized I had a choice to make: continue the pattern of being a teen full of angst and cynicism or actually admit I was having fun. Whatever turn of events had occurred, I decided to kill it the rest of my senior year and make everything an opportunity for fun.
The first thing I did was quit my job. Yeah, I quit my part-time source of income to relieve some stress. For whatever reason all of my teachers had piled on essay after essay and I knew that I had to finish school with good grades as well as good times. Therefore, I said auf weidersehen to my job and güten tag to the last two weeks of focusing on making the most of high school. This included finishing all of my projects and essays before the deadlines and hanging out in my German teacher’s office just catching up and even helping with some organizational things.
The next thing I did was I started sleeping in. I knew that if I was waking up at the crack of dawn when I could totally afford the extra Z’s, I needed to do just that. I started planning my outfits the night before as opposed to picking them out on the fly because that meant I had more time to catch up my beauty sleep before I had to get to class on time. On top of sleeping in, I went to bed earlier because I wasn’t stuck at a job until 10 at night and then up until one or two in the morning trying to get my homework done. I managed to get eight to nine hours of sleep every night the last two weeks of high school which meant I had more energy to fully immerse myself in the high school experience.
Lastly, I did everything senior related so I felt like I had made an effort to be as social as possible. I went to the senior carnival and felt happy around my classmates for the first time in four long years. I went to the senior luncheon as an almost last good bye to my favorite teachers and classmates. I also went to prom and danced like a dad at a barbecue because I was having too much fun to care what my classmates had to say. For the first time in my entire high school career, I knew I was having fun.
You see the thing is, finishing high school with a bang doesn’t always have to mean that you ended up on prom court or that you were the valedictorian of your graduating class. Sometimes just admitting that you’re having a killer time is enough to really enjoy yourself. You only graduate from high school once and the little things you do leading up to it is what makes the whole experience worth it.
Lead Image Credit: Jeanie Brew and Kyra Hendricks