So at the end of June, I graduated from high school (yay me). There was the painful 3-hour ceremony, the silly gowns and even sillier hats, and the enormously endless line of graduates. There was a girl who passed out and a girl who screamed, “I did it mom!” on stage, as one might expect at such an event.
I hated it quite cheerily, to be honest, and was happy to just go home and devour an absurd amount of food. Did the ceremony mean anything to me? Not really. Besides making it official, I couldn’t have cared less whether I had a ceremony or not. As far as I was concerned, I had graduated at the end of my last exam. The grad night was superfluous.
But holy crap, I survived.
I didn’t punch a single person, either (though there were both teachers and students who I think fully deserved it). And I didn’t lose my individuality, or my creativity, or my friends–or any of the things my grade nine self was worried about. Okay, so the first two years were full of kicking and screaming, but I got used to it, realized it couldn’t define me, and managed to endure my way through it. There were moments when I perhaps didn’t try very hard on homework or didn’t study enough for tests, and maybe I could’ve gotten a better grade in chem this year if I’d really applied myself, but after the stress and the tears and the resentment, I’m just glad I’m done.
And hey, grade 12 wasn’t even that bad. It was kind of fun.
Will I miss high school? Not likely. I’ll keep in touch with the people there who mean most to me. I’ll keep close to my heart all the experiences that truly influenced me. But there was so much about high school that I didn’t agree with, I think I can safely say that leaving it behind will be no problem.
Except that university comes next.
With the closing of one book comes the opening of another, right? Which is fine and dandy. I closed the book on elementary school and opened the book on high school. I closed the book on high school and am now opening the book on university. But…
See, this is where I don’t know what to say. The frustration I mentioned earlier, yeah, that’s still here. It’s probably been here since the summer started. I feel so tired, so frustrated, so done. Why? What the heck’s wrong with me?
I keep trying to get over it, to figure out what’s wrong, to do something to feel better, but the summer just keeps slipping away and I just keep letting it go. This is not okay. This is not okay. But I don’t know how to make it okay.
And I’m realizing that it’s only getting worse the longer I let it go because I feel like I’m running out of time until the end. Instead of university being the start of a new book, it’s becoming the end of my freedom. I keep thinking of it as the time when all the torment I went through in high school is going to kick up again, only ten times worse, and I have just a bit more than a month to enjoy what freedom I have left.
I’m not getting cold feet, no–I’m still going to go through with university (seven years to be a vet, woo), and I’m going to take it head-on, aggressively, like any warrior would. But I guess I’m just worried about myself. The way my soul feels, right now… this is not okay. This is not an acceptable way to feel for seven long years.
But getting back on track–one Saturday following grad, I had nearly all my family together for a BBQ, celebrating my graduation. Having both my mom and dad’s relatives in one place, seeing them come together as a single community, was wonderful. And when my mom gave a speech, thanking my family for their support, for helping me become who I am today, I couldn’t have agreed with her more.
I am approaching university, something I am prematurely and subconsciously dreading, without any idea of what to expect in reality. But behind and around me are all of the words of support and love that my family has given me, and beyond that, the words of my friends. They have indeed helped me get to where I am, and I know they will continue to do so.
I don’t know where I’m headed, but I know that I will need them, friends and family alike. I will need their words, their love, their belief.
I sincerely hope that university doesn’t start the same as high school did, and I don’t let the same resentment and loathing build up. Even if I do, though, I’ll have to cling to the faith that I can do this. I somehow survived high school, so I can survive university, right?
To all my family and all my friends who have been with me this far, thank you. Thank you for all your support and love, both in past and in future. I will try to lend the same to you in return.
This is what heroes do, isn’t it? When they are afraid, they reach out their hands to the ones they love most. They reach out for help.
What new book has scared you the most?
May you always have support to lift you when you fear that you may fall.
PS: I should introduce you to my Aunt Catherine. She is my, em, eccentric aunt who’s been dying to make an appearance in my blog. She likes to dye her own wool (she’s got sheep) with bark (apparently?) and play the tin whistle. Aunt Catherine–I’m still waiting for you to learn to skip across the yard while playing your tin whistle. I’d give you a whole blog post to yourself if you did that ;)