This is my last full week of high school ever, and as sentimental a person as I am, I’m still happy to be saying goodbye. Since it’s the second semester of my fifth year of high school, there are very few students who are in the same grade. Most of those who I graduated with are either working full time or just finished their first year of university. When I walk through the hallways, I don’t recognize anyone anymore, and I’ve honestly gotten to a point where I am past ready to leave. When I was finishing grade 12, it was much more of an emotional goodbye. It felt like I was really saying farewell to my high school experience, and this time around, it’s as if I’m too busy looking forward to be thinking about the past.
This doesn’t mean I won’t miss it though. When I started grade nine, I was a scared, quirky 13-year-old who came to a much bigger school than my previous one and knew absolutely no one. My middle school was one hallway with six classes, and my high school is five floors that don’t connect, countless hallways, and a million flights of stairs. I still remember my first day of school, walking around the building before classes started, trying to find my classrooms before the first bell. I wore a peach blouse and had a flower crown in my hair, and each nail was painted a different colour. Thankfully, my style and fashion have since evolved, and I only wear one polish at a time now.
Each first day of school, I would walk up to the front doors, and before I walked in, I would wonder, “What will this year teach me?”. And without fail, every year something would happen that at the time I considered life altering. While I know that hindsight is 20/20, and I can see that those incidents were not the end of the world as I anticipated, I still see that I learned incredible lessons and grew as a person from each one. Once in a while, I will have moments when I wish I could have done something differently, maybe said something different, wore a different outfit, spoke a little more, spoke a little less. When I have these moments, however, I remind myself that I couldn’t change who I was. There were things I didn’t know, and I had to learn those things. I remind myself that there are still mistakes I need to make, and one day I’ll look back to myself right now, and wish that I had done something differently, but because I don’t know what I’ll know then yet, I can’t make those changes. I can just do what I hope is the right decision, and remember that life keeps moving.
And speaking of things moving, I have an exciting, packed summer ahead. I’ll be finishing it off by moving into residence at York University. The first week of summer, I’ll be volunteering as a leader at camp, which I am super excited for! After that, I’ll be mostly working, traveling up north to visit family, and prepping for nationals! I have a few events already scheduled in my calendar, and hopefully, there’ll be even more to add! I’m also starting my six weeks of fundraising for WE Charity (formerly Free The Children) at the end of this month, so I have some awesome fundraisers planned. I also am in the planning stages for a new campaign, so keep an eye out.
Then in August, I have Miss Teenage Canada, of course! I’ve been super busy preparing and getting myself ready. I want to be in the best shape possible, physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, so I feel my best when I walk that stage. This includes working out, practicing, eating healthy, and loads of other things. My goal for nationals is top 10, since last time around I didn’t make it to top 20, but I also want to challenge myself. After the pageant is complete, I’ll have a couple weeks to pack and say my goodbyes, since I’ll be heading off to school! It’s been a stressful few months with applications, acceptances, figuring out how to finance my education, and figuring out everything I need to do before I start. I’ll be studying theatre at York University, and it’ll take about six years since I’ll also be getting my teaching degree concurrently. I’m so excited to move out and be independent, meeting new people and having new experiences, but I know I’ll still have some bumps along the way. It’s just remembering that all of those bumps are chances to learn and grow, and taking those opportunities as they come.
So I am saying goodbye to high school this week. But who knows, maybe if I end up teaching drama, I’ll be back in high school one day. For now, though, it’s see you later. I’ve got lots I need to do, and God knows high school isn’t the end of it. It was far from the “best four (five??) years” of my life, but it’s still full of memories I’ll never forget.
Til Next Time