Things I Miss About High School
So you might think I’m completely over high school, ‘cuz I mean, I kind of am –but I still get those pangs of loss here and there.
As a super-senior graduating in December, I’m proud to say that the whole college thing got easier around my junior year. There were many things that had changed by then: I already had made a pretty solid group of friends, I had gotten used to being far from home, and I had an idea of what I wanted to become.
I’m not sure if anybody tells you this often, but sometimes the first two years of college can be pretty rough on you. It’s an experience very unique to everyone, but there definitely are a couple of common denominators. For instance, not really knowing what you want to do with your life yet, having tons of things you’re still trying to get used to, and entering a new phase of your life–all those things together and more.
But even though high school and the first two years of college feel pretty remote by now, when I’m browsing pictures online of those weird, awkward, and fun four years I get a strange feeling recalling how it all used to be. So that it doesn’t take you by surprise, here are some of the things I always come back to.
1. Lots of opportunities, low responsibility.
You know exactly what I’m talking about. You finally turned 14 and got your learner’s permit, your parents started being a lot more lenient about letting you go out past your curfew, and you lost track of the number of sleepovers you participated in. No? Was that just me? What I’m trying to say is you had all the fun, with little-to-no responsibility. The time hadn’t come yet when you had bank accounts or credit cards under your name. Student loan debt wasn’t even a thing on your mind. You didn’t even have to think about making a living for yourself. What’s for dinner? Who cares? Mom will be home. Now, my friends, if you’re 10 pounds lighter and you haven’t had your favorite spaghetti and meatballs, it’s your own fault. The adult world comes with it’s own set of perks, but some days when I’m up late at night mulling over my finances, I can’t help with miss those simpler times.
2. A stronger sense of belonging.
College has taught me that a sense of belonging is something that comes and goes throughout life. While in high school I took that notion for granted, in college it’s something I appreciated and missed when it wasn’t present. I went to a small school, so I had known the same group of friends since we were babies, and it was so easy to think of everyone as family even through all the drama, break-ups, and every other experience quintessential to high school. While college was a little bit more about, how I like to put it, running for your life. College is a lot of trial-and-error–in everything, choosing a major, learning who your real friends are, etc. Therefore, a lot of the time you can feel like an insipid drop of water in a huge ocean– a little lost, a little unsure, a little scrambling for something that will make you feel like yourself, without all the external things that make you you. But I think this is such an essential part about growing up. Just know that it might feel rough at first, but you’re not alone. May it all be in the name of becoming independent, and sure about who you are!
It’s embarrassing how much time we truly have in high school, and how much we waste it. Granted, it might not feel like that during the time, but once you look back at it after being a college student for a few years, it might seem kind of ridiculous you complained so much. I specially remember passing on some school activities, like becoming part of a school play and other things that I would’ve enjoyed so much, because I felt a little stretched thin as it was. Pffff. It must be that during college you build a stronger stamina for activity, for being busy, and for juggling school and fun a thousand times better. Busy? I went home every day around 2pm, did homework, spent hours on MySpace, mom made dinner, and I would watch TV at night. Now I’m lucky if I get home at 6pm and I’ll call it a successful day if I get to see one Friends episode on Nick at Nite. Haha.
Upperclassmen, is there anything I missed? 😉