An Open Letter To The High School Class Of 2018

An Open Letter To The High School Class Of 2018

Are you ready for the beginning of the end?

Dear class of 2018,

This is it: senior year. In about 7 months, you’ll be walking across that stage to receive your high school diploma. Graduation is the most anticipated day of high school. You just can’t wait to get those cap and gowns and throw your caps in the air. I know.

What I didn’t know was how fast it was about to go. Each day felt like an eternity and it seemed as if June would never come. But before we knew it, we were cleaning out our lockers of four years, signing our last yearbooks, hearing everyone’s future plans announced.

It’s your last honor society ceremony, but this time it’s you who’s receiving those gold cords. This time, the announcer says your name. “Anna Kropov is escorted by her parents. She will be attending Ohio University in the fall to major in biology pre-med.” We’ve all watched our beloved seniors walk across the stage. We all know what to do, except that it’s our turn now. It doesn’t feel real when the principal lays those gold cords around your neck, as you stand arm in arm with your family.

One month later and we’re trying on our caps and gowns, walking through those halls one last time. How is it already here? Is this real? Am I really walking into the gym for my graduation ceremony? I swore I would never cry leaving high school. I was so ready to leave, to start a new life and move to a place where nobody knew me.

What I didn’t think of was the 12 years I spent here. Not all of those years were good but not all of them were bad. The funny part about graduation was that I cried saying goodbye to my favorite teachers and not my classmates. (I don’t exactly miss them, except for a handful of special people. They know who they are.) I remember that everyone was just an emotional mess. Underclassmen laughed at us, telling us how we were so sentimental. Shouldn’t we be rejoicing? We’re done! We did it! We’re free!

While all of that is true, we realized that this was a big step in our lives.

It was time to walk away from everything we’ve ever known and step into a big, scary world. This past year was a roller coaster of emotions and stress, which hasn’t exactly escaped us. College lies ahead. A new school with strangers will become our new home in the fall. Not going to lie, it scared the heck out of everyone. We had to step outside our comfort zones and leave our childhood memories behind to become adults. It was a lot to take in at once.

So enjoy the time you have left in high school.

Go to those last football games, enjoy your last homecoming, participate in your privileged “senior skip day.” Thank your favorite teachers, because they’ll miss seeing you every day in the halls over the past four years. It’s okay to be scared and nervous about college searches. We all went through it.

My advice is to keep an open heart and mind. If you want to go to school far away, do it. Don’t let the fear of the unknown stop you from living your dreams. Your friends will love you if you’re five or 500 miles away. You will make new friends in college if you just branch out.

Senior year is a fun and exciting time in life, so live it up to the fullest. Try something new, cherish those memories and do what makes you happy. I know you don’t believe me, but trust me when I say that you’ll miss it a little bit. You’ll miss your home and your annoying parents who just want to look after you while you’re in college.

Don’t try to push through this year with an “I don’t care” attitude. Live a little, be sentimental, give your teachers a gift on graduation day. They’ll keep that little card on their desk for the upcoming years. It means more to them than you think.

I hope you all find your dream schools, but don’t get too caught up in the future. Focus on the present. Make the most of the time you have left. I hope all you Paupack seniors back home are living it up there. Enjoy it, you deserve to have a little fun on our beautiful lake. I love looking at your pictures and seeing those precious smiles. It makes me reminisce about my days spent as a cheerleader on those Friday nights.

Take it all in and finish strong, my loves. It’ll be worth it in the end.


An alum who moved to Ohio to follow her dreams.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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To The Girl Who Had A Plan

A letter to the girl whose life is not going according to her plan.
“I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.” - William Ernest Henley

Since we were little girls we have been asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” We responded with astronauts, teachers, presidents, nurses, etc. Then we start growing up, and our plans change.

In middle school, our plans were molded based on our friends and whatever was cool at the time. Eventually, we went to high school and this question became serious, along with some others: “What are your plans for college?” “What are you going to major in?” “When do you think you’ll get married?” “Are you going to stay friends with your friends?” We are bombarded with these questions we are supposed to have answers to, so we start making plans.

Plans, like going to college with our best friends and getting a degree we’ve been dreaming about. Plans, to get married as soon as we can. We make plans for how to lose weight and get healthy. We make plans for our weddings and children.

SEE ALSO: 19 Pieces Of Advice From A Soon-To-Be 20-Year-Old

We fill our Pinterest boards with these dreams and hopes that we have, which are really great things to do, but what happens when you don’t get into that college? What happens when your best friend chooses to go somewhere else? Or, what if you don’t get the scholarship you need or the awards you thought you deserved. Maybe, the guy you thought you would marry breaks your heart. You might gain a few pounds instead of losing them. Your parents get divorced. Someone you love gets cancer. You don’t get the grades you need. You don’t make that collegiate sports team. The sorority you’re a legacy to, drops you. You didn’t get the job or internship you applied for. What happens to you when this plan doesn’t go your way?

I’ve been there.

The answer for that is “I have this hope that is an anchor for my soul.” Soon we all realize we are not the captain of our fate. We don’t have everything under control nor will we ever have control of every situation in our lives. But, there is someone who is working all things together for the good of those who love him, who has a plan and a purpose for the lives of his children. His name is Jesus. When life takes a turn you aren’t expecting, those are the times you have to cling to Him the tightest, trusting that His plan is what is best. That is easier said than done, but keep pursuing Him. I have found in my life that His plans were always better than mine, and slowly He’s revealing that to me.

The end of your plan isn’t the end of your life. There is more out there. You may not be the captain of your fate, but you can be the master of your soul. You can choose to be happy despite your circumstances. You can change directions at any point and go a different way. You can take the bad and make something beautiful out of it, if you allow God to work in your heart.

SEE ALSO: To The Girl Patiently Waiting With An Impatient Heart

So, make the best of that school you did get in to. Own it. Make new friends- you may find they are better than the old ones. Apply for more scholarships, or get a job. Move on from the guy that broke your heart; he does not deserve you. God has a guy lined up for you who will love you completely. Spend all the time you can with the loved one with cancer. Pray, pray hard for healing. Study more. Apply for more jobs, or try to spend your summer serving others instead. Join a different club or get involved in other organizations on campus. Find your delight first in God and then pursue other activities that make you happy; He will give you the desires of your heart.

My friend, it is going to be OK.

Cover Image Credit: Megan Beavers Photography

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I'm Not Feelin' 22, But I'll Make The Most Of It

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Birthdays are all about being the center of attention, - birthday wishes from friends and family, and celebrating another milestone in your life. People go out of their way to buy party favors, set up parties, and buy gifts just to make someone feel special on their birthday. However, some people dread their special day because of anxiety and depression. This past weekend was my 22ndbirthday, and although I'm usually excited for my birthday, this was the birthday I had been dreading.

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While you may catch the birthday blues at some point in your lifetime, there are ways to change your attitude on the day. You may hear from someone from the past wishing you a happy birthday that can make you smile, or receive a gift from a family or friend that you had your eye on in the store and they knew you had to have it. Don't compare yourself to others when it comes to birthday plans, live the day how you would like and spend it with the people that matter most to you.

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