My high school experience
April 1, 2016
Filed under Millenial Manifesto - Meg Friel
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As I approach my senior year as well as my 17th birthday, I can’t help but reflect on the years of my high school’s past. I started my adventure, that is, high school, as a mild and meek freshman. I wasn’t scared, despite the “scared freshman” cliché, but more so optimistic.
Freshman year was my favorite year of high school, surprisingly. I was lucky enough to have an older sister that familiarized me with my teachers, classes, and friends. I entered high school naive, and I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. For most of my high school life, I’ve jumped between friend groups. As for freshman year, I spent most of my time aspiring to be like the upperclassmen with friends that seemed more like sisters. I was surrounded by people bonded by years of memories – enclosed with secrets of late nights or inside jokes that I so desperately wanted. I was waiting to find my friends.
For the past two years, I’ve spent my time feeling lost. I would always be surrounded by people, but somehow felt like I never fit in. I was afraid I would spend high school re-living the same nights, with the same people, never feeling quite satisfied with who I was/where I was in my life. I felt the need to change myself to fit around the people I was hanging out with. I compromised my personality for the past two years just to try and enjoy myself and make the most of my “high school experience.” From my time as a freshman to early this year, I never felt like I belonged, no matter who I was with.
Not only did I feel misplaced, I felt bored. I was sick of doing the same thing every night and never feeling happy, always feeling like I was wasting my nights away. I wanted the humor and passion and memories that everyone around me seemed immersed in. I craved more.
It was only until recently that, as truism as it sounds, I found myself. I stopped forcing myself to be more, to make the most out of high school while changing myself for it’s sake, and instead – I let go. I now have a group of friends that accept me for who I am that I can say truly make me happy. It’s the nights that I spend with them that make me feel like I have genuinely found my place, and that I am honestly making the most of high school.
If I have any advice to give to my former self, it is to let go. It took some time, but I’ve found out that it is more important to accept yourself and to surround yourself with people that truly make you happy than to try to fit into other people’s memories. It is to enjoy high school with friends that make you better. It is to love yourself without compromise.