The Real Pressures of Senior Year
Going into my senior year of high school, I’ve been advised one thing and one thing only: to “make it count.” It’s hard to even describe what this age-old adage means for me, as someone who is as lost as any other person at this age. I mean there is a pretty big decision looming over our heads as we walk into every classroom, do our homework, and participate in our various extra curriculars. We are expected to decide, in less than a year, what we will do and where our futures will take us. Will they take us to a local community college, to a nearby state school, or across the country in an unknown place? What will we study, dedicate the rest of our lives to doing?
There are so many questions that are being asked of us, and many of us, like myself, are coming up with blank spots. I’m lost in this process. trying to do well in my classes is proving to be a difficult task as I can’t stop thinking about where I will be in a year’s time. It’s hard to even fathom that I will be far from the only place I’ve ever known, from the only people I’ve ever known. But I guess that’s what growing up means, it means finding yourself. Every personal statement has me asking myself who I really am and to my chagrin, I don’t even know how to begin to answer that question. Am I this or that? What do I like and not like? What do I want? And I don’t know where to begin to find where my endpoint is, and the never-ending reel of thoughts in my head don’t quite help much either.
What I’ve found to be the real pressures of senior year are these: being expected to fill out multiple applications, finding time to interview with college reps and demonstrate interest, as well as doing well in school and making time for all of my other commitments. And last but not least, to have fun while doing it all. It’s a doozy, I know. But as much as this process is a very individual one, to say the least, it brings a multitude together to share in their hopes and fears. I don’t think I’ve ever felt more united to my classmates than I do in this moment, because we are all in the same boat. We all have external pressures and things clouding up our perspectives. We are all, in a way, trying to find ourselves and see where we fit in this big, lonely world.
All I can hope is that in this trying process I find myself, my true passions, and a place that I think will help me cultivate those very passions. I think that my struggle is similar to others in the sense that I’m a child coming to terms with becoming an adult, and assuming (little by little) the responsibilities that come with that. Knowing this, I can already tell that senior year will be the most difficult for me, I’m sure, but I’m ready to enjoy every moment of it and take it one step at a time.