How High School Changed Me - A Reflection

High school for me was frankly miserable.

It hasn’t changed me, it’s the experiences that I’ve had in high school that have. All it’s made me is bitter. 

High school is riddled with a bunch of cliques that peak there, filled with people whose perception is so self-warped that they’ll toss you away when something better comes along, without a glance back. It’s people that criticize and belittle and think they know you better than you know yourself. 

I’m over it.

I’m over the countless movies that glamorize it, that tell you you’ll find an amazing high school romance, and they’ll be the love of your life, and it will be the best years of your life. 

Newsflash: It’s not true, any of it.

Not for me. I was the one that everyone liked, but not enough to get invited anywhere. I was the one that only had one friend that was wonderful, and sometimes I wouldn’t appreciate her as much as I should. Sometimes I’m the one who still hasn’t learned and yearns for the poison that turned me bitter in the first place.

Change is an ongoing process, more like an ocean where you have no idea what direction you’re going in. A nasty storm could hit and you could either end up where you started or somewhere you’ve never been.

So no, I haven’t changed because of high school, I’ve changed in spite of it. I’ve learned how to handle disappointment, and how to manage my expectations.

High school is not the end all be all, I’m glad I’ll peak in college.

I was looking through my old drafts and stumbled upon this old beauty. 

Surprisingly enough, I wrote this in my senior year of high school.

To give some context, this was for my journalism class. A peer came up to me and said that they would love to feature me in the senior edition of our school newspaper. They were going to put a freshman picture next to a senior picture (I knew they really only asked cause I had one of the most dramatic changes, from long brown hair freshman year to short purple hair senior year). They said all I needed to do was write about how high school changed me. I was stumped later that day I sat in front of my computer. The document blank as I stewed on my past four years . . . and I came to find that I didn't really enjoy it. 

Though that conclusion stumped me more. Now, what was I really going to write about? How was I going to spin this? Was I just going to spout bullshit of kumbaya and how we were all besties? Or was I really going to just go ham and write about how I truly felt? 

Obviously, the latter won out. 

When I submitted it all those years ago, and I received that edition hot off the press - the realization of a magazine full of pages and not one of them mine - I wasn't surprised. Maybe a little hurt, but not surprised.  

Maybe even more than a little. 

Though now I find comfort in how it can find its home here, all those years later.