Dear High School Seniors,
You've made it! In just a few months you will be getting ready to put on your cap and gown and walk across the stage to get your diploma. Soon, you're gonna say goodbye to the life you've known for the past four years and start a new life somewhere else. At this point, your senioritis has most likely already kicked in and you're probably dreading waking up at 7 a.m. more and more each day. The second semester of senior year is annoying, but cherish every moment of it.
Everything is about to change. As you walk down the hallways, look around. Take a second to look at your classmates and ask them how their days are going. Learn about them and the stories they have to share with the world. Everybody has some advice to give and you never know what you're going to learn. Before you know it, you won't be seeing their faces anymore. The only form of connection you'll have with most of them is through social media which will eventually fade as well. You don't want your only memories of those you graduated with to be just seeing their faces in the hall.
Go to the places you love the most. Whether it's your favorite hometown restaurant or your favorite place to hang out with your friends, go. Go until you're sick of it. Take a second to acknowledge the sights and smells around you. You're going to miss them. In a few months, you won't be able to jump in your car and drive five minutes to get there. The places that make your home your home are about to be a long car ride or flight away.
Spend time with your family. This is one thing I wish I realized earlier more than anything.
Your parents are most likely going to soon become visibly upset or scared at the fact that you're leaving them. After all, you are their little girl or boy. This time is just as stressful for them as it is for you. But don't make fun of them. Hang out with them. You're going to miss the once-dreaded trips to the grocery store with your mom and the annoying car rides with your little brother. You really don't realize how important your family is to you until they're not a few footsteps away anymore. Unfortunately, no amount of Facetime calls will ever compare to being with them in person. Don't leave home wishing you had spent more time with them.
Be involved in the things happening at your school. Go to Prom. Buy a yearbook and get as many people as you can to sign it. Attend your grad bash. Go to the football, basketball, baseball and soccer games you have left. These activities may seem boring at times, but they are what you're going to remember. When you get to a big university it isn't going to be as easy to get involved.
Get excited about the future. Even if you're not going to your dream school, it's going to be OK. The second semester of my senior year I spent upset over the fact I was going to stay at an in-state school - the school I'm at now was the last place I had thought about attending. I almost didn't even apply. However, I am so lucky that I did. I truly can not imagine there being a school that could have been a better choice for me. The people I have met and the opportunities I have been given would have never been put in front of me if I had attended another school. Try to keep an open mind. Everything really does happen for a reason. If you aren't going to the school you originally were hoping to, don't stress. You're going to end up at the place right for you, at least I know I did.
College is amazing but there will always be something special about your home. Make sure you make these last few months your best months. These next few months will be filled with a whole lot of lasts and followed by a whole lot of firsts. Good luck!