Hello seniors! I have some exciting news to tell you. You are graduating in just a few weeks and high school is officially over! Now for some that may be a very sad thing, and for others, it is a very exciting thing. I know for me, I was so happy and excited to finally be done, grow up, and move on. At that time a lot was going on in my life that involved typical high school drama and I just wanted out. I have often looked back on my final moments in high school and realize that I was so caught up in trying to get out of the negative, I didn't take time to find the positive and enjoy the time I did have left being young.

Something that I want to get across to you, growing up may sound great, but don't try to grow up and chase what's next without taking the opportunity to appreciate what you have now. Honestly, when you are a senior in high school it is common to feel superior and like you are grown and know what you are doing. You feel grown and "responsible," but the reality is, you don't really know what "responsible" means. When I started applying to college and then got accepted, I felt great and felt like I knew how my life would go and felt it was going to be a breeze!

Oh, how I was so wrong.

College is a whole different ballgame and even when you are in college you don't get that sense of responsibility until you move off campus into a place by yourself and your name is the only name on the lease (I know this from experience). You also have to actually call people, like financial aid or maybe your landlords and just, in general, you realize that calling someone is a lot more efficient than texting. I'm sorry to burst your teenage bubble but it's time to get serious. What I am trying to say here is, the older you get, the more responsibility that comes with it and there is no going back.

Another thing, friendships will change, it is a part of life. I remember during the months my friend and I were not talking, I was so sad and upset that I wanted to just give up and it felt like the end of the world. I wanted to stop enjoying my life because I was so convinced she was the only friend I would ever make and that limited my perspective for a while. It wasn't until we had both started college that we got back in touch and sorted things out and I'm so thankful for that, but during those months without her I kept myself from really living because I was so focused on how sad I was and the lack of friendship that I didn't really give anyone really the opportunity to grow a friendship with. Along with friendships changing, you still have time to create lifelong friendships in these last few weeks if you want, but that is up to you.

The last thing I want to mention is, do what you can to learn how to have a relationship with your parents, because it may surprise you, but at some points in your life, you are going to wish you did exactly that. What is so funny is since coming to college, I believe our relationship has become stronger and is just a whole other type of relationship. I consider one of my best friends with the additional understanding she still is my mom, but I know that at the end of the day, everything that used to annoy me about her telling me what to do when I was younger, was just her trying to prepare for me for the life I am currently living. And I have learned to appreciate her in a whole new way and she sees me as an adult that is at the point of learning what life is like for myself.

There is nothing wrong with wanting to move forward, but sometimes in that thinking, some may forget to live in the present. After this, life changes and it can be great but it can be hard. Tale this time you have left living young, to appreciate your opportunities and life now. The present only happens once, so treated it as though it's the limited edition it is because these moments are precious. Don't forget to celebrate the fact that you made it! Life hits hard after this point, are you ready?