Open Letter to High School Seniors

Dear High School Seniors,

I know you and all of your friends are looking forward to graduation day and wishing the days would just hurry up already, but don’t wish it all away just yet. There are a lot of things you’ll miss out on if you do.

Yes you might hate some teachers. You may want to get the heck away from all the annoying kids of your class or the limits of your town. Maybe you just can’t stand living at home anymore and want to be out on your own. Whatever the reason may be, there are still a lot of things to enjoy about your last year of high school.

You won’t realize till graduation day how so very much you appreciated seeing your friends every day and passing familiar faces in the halls. You’ll be walking across the stage and it’ll still only partially hit you. Your class speaker will be reminiscing on all the great memories and stories your class had been apart of together. You’ll know life is going to be different, moving away to college in a few months, but what you won’t quite fully understand is just how different it’ll be. You’ll be walking around campus in the fall to your first class as a freshman in college and you’ll finally grasp how so very much you miss seeing all those familiar faces. How you miss having classes with all your best friends and making stupid faces at them till they burst out laughing. How badly you wish they weren’t all miles away and you could just walk right on up to their doorstep. You’ll miss the late nights at your favorite hangout spot. You’ll miss the pep talks and all the hard-earned celebrations with your teammates. You’ll miss the awkward school dances (and all the embarrassing pictures you’ll have to look back on and laugh at later). You’ll finally realize what it’s like to miss your parents and home-cooked meals. Having your own room and your own space. You’ll realize how much you miss the familiarity of your hometown and all the people in it-regardless how much you thought you wanted to get away and start new: you’ll still miss home from time to time.

The things they won’t teach you in school is just how valuable all the time spent with your friends really is. They won’t explain to you how to deal with the separation of all you’ve ever known and grown up with. They won’t teach you how to deal with tough professors or sticky roommate situations or late night cramming for big exams. Sure, they’ll teach you literature and algebra, but they won’t teach you how important the next few years of your life will be. Don’t get me wrong, college is great. It’s where you finally decide what you want to do with the rest of your life and where you meet your soon-to-be lifelong friends. It may even be where you fall in love. It’s an exciting time in your life, but high school still has stuff to offer.

Enjoy every Friday night football game and go all out for the themes. Cherish your late night drives and random food runs with friends. Dance your heart out at all the awkward school dances and don’t even worry about what people think. You won’t even see half of them again in a few months. So go crazy. Go chasing sunsets with your best friends or doing Chinese fire drills at every stoplight. Enjoy the rest of your senior year and the memories you create during it. Jump at opportunities with friends. Simply, enjoy life and the amazing people in it, because sooner or later, before you realize it, things will be much different and that chapter of your life will have closed, probably leaving some people behind and you won’t be able to go back and add on to the chapter. You’ll have moved on. All you’ll have are the crazy stories of all the wild stuff you did with your crew back in high school and all the cherished memories of that chapter of your life. 

You don’t get to go back and rewrite your story or change how things panned out, so just before you turn the page and start writing a new story, take time to finish out the one you’re already in and appreciate every single word of it.

Sincerely,

Your College Self

 

 

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