Before I even got to high school I was done with it. Cliques, too much homework and crowded hallways I would always get lost in. I look back and now think this was a result of one too many episodes of Saved by the Bell reruns. I went in with the mindset that I just wanted to get in and out, I was not looking for any friends or to find my “passion in life.” As if on cue, the day before I started high school I also started practice on a recreational soccer team with a group of people I did not know. One girl there was my age and just happened to go to my school. Her name was Veronica. She had this intensity and carefree attitude that made me at least partially afraid of her, but she became my friend; my first friend in a string of friends to follow.
That was mostly my freshmen year, just making friends and getting used to this huge school where every hallway looks the same as the last. Everyone says junior year is the hardest, the most pressure, the least fun, but sophomore year; that was my hardest. It wasn’t the workload because I only took Honors Chemistry and the rest were general classes but it was this sense of urgency in the air. I felt like I never stopped moving and working which was not really all that true. To add on to it, in the Spring I decided I wanted to play soccer like I had the year before. Turns out this was not the experience I had planned for and ended up finding out that soccer was indeed not a real passion of mine.
Junior year was not as bad as I thought it would be. I took some challenging classes and handled them pretty well. I continued to make new friends and actually met someone who is now one of my closest friends. Her name is Gorny. Actually it’s Lauren but I refuse to call her that given the abundant number of Laurens in the class of 2015. This friendship was particularly strange to me because up until this point I was only close with people I had known for years beforehand. With her, we met, we clicked and now she’s my roommate for next year. It was as simple as that. Junior year was also the year of the ACT. That meant “studying” for the test, taking the test and ultimately stressing about the test. I took a class and everything but the highest I ever got was a 27 (I took it again in September and got a 29).
I made the mistake of trying out for soccer again, for the last time; it did not turn out as I planned. You always hear the phrase “life is not fair.” Please believe it. I never regret playing soccer, it taught me a lesson that I will carry with me for the rest of my life. Remember earlier when I said I was not looking to find my “passion in life”? Well, that kind of happened too, at least I knew what I wanted to do with my college education. I wanted to major in psychology and I wanted to go to the University of Michigan. The school was amazing and notoriously difficult to get into but I did what I could my junior year and went into summer break set on starting my college applications.
So far I have only been talking about the school year but I have to talk about the summer between my junior and senior year. I got my first paying job at the Jewish Community Center as a camp counselor. I met so many people and made so many memories. I was never one to particularly like kids or camp life but it was the best summer of my life. To this day I am close with the people I met that summer. For those 8 weeks they were truly my second family.
Senior year. Present moment. Last 40 weeks of my high school career. I got into my school of choice, University of Michigan in December and the rest of this year is just about finishing strong. I am currently writing this about 2 weeks before we leave and that blows my mind. This year was the most fun I have ever had (I have about 1,000 pictures and $17 in my bank account to prove it). I won’t talk about every weekend I spent getting lost in Metro Detroit or the outrageous amount of money I spent on baby powder. Just know those are my memories and they have made my high school experience that much better.
So turns out I did make friends and I did find my current “passion in life” which will probably change in about 6 months but it’s a start. I want to thank everyone for making my high school years not only bearable but something I truly enjoyed. My best friends, Emma and Jianella, have been by my side not only all four years but for my entire life.
I want to thank every teacher I have ever had here, whether they were my favorite or not. Some challenged me to my breaking point and some have simply just been there for me. I would especially like to thank Ms. Grabill. She was my coach and teacher and I cannot thank her enough for everything she has done for me. I also want to thank Ms. B’sheart for giving me the opportunity to constructively apply my love for writing to this class and allowing me to write this article as a reflection of my life in high school.
Last but not least I want to thank my family. My parents have given me so much support and love and reminded me to not only keep focused but to have fun. Nothing I have ever accomplished could have been done without them. For that, I am eternally grateful.
Minor Myers said, “Go into the world and do well. But more importantly go into the world and do good.” What is this “world” people speak of? The “real world”? Some teens like to argue that we’ve been in the “real world” our whole lives. I don’t consider spending 8 hours a day in the same rectangle wooden desks to be the “real world.” But I do believe we know of the “real world.” We know the poverty, the death, the pain of the “real world”. That is what school is meant to do, give us knowledge and then give us the tools to go into the “real world” and make a difference. I will keep striving to make this difference at the University of Michigan next year. It will be another stop on this long journey. Go Lakers and Go Blue!