To The High School Graduate

To The High School Graduate

Don't look back.

To The High School Graduate
Megan Beavers

There’s good news and bad news.

The good news is, you did it! You survived 13 years of the education system, which may or may not have taught you everything you need to know for college and life after. All your hard work, or lack thereof, payed off, and you get to move on with your life. And now that the government isn’t mandating how you spend your week anymore, you get to choose what path you take. There are many wonderful options to choose from, and each holds something new, exciting and life-changing.

The bad news is, now that you’ve completed all that hard work, and you’ve graduated, no one cares about what you did in high school.

I found that out all too quickly in college.

It didn’t matter to anyone that I had a 4.0, took AP classes, and was at the top of my class. It didn’t matter to anyone that I was in SGA, NHS, or Beta Club. It didn’t matter that I played soccer, or that I did a ton of service in high school. No one asked about it. It didn’t help me make any friends, nor get my professors to like me.

At first that was shocking. Wasn’t that why I was in all those clubs and worked so hard, because it looked good on my “college application”? And you mean to tell me after they check that off, I’m just in, and it doesn’t matter anymore? That everything I did was just for someone to skim over and decide if I was good enough to pay them $28,000 a year for an education?

That was really frustrating.

It seemed as though all the work and effort I had put in was for nothing. The recognition had faded. I was on the same playing field as everyone else, because they had done just as much, or more, than me. I became a really small fish in a really big pond. And I felt like I wasted my time, because some of the things I did, I didn’t really enjoy. I did it just for what I would get out of it, when I could have been putting my time into something I loved.

And then I realized that I was being really selfish, and life isn’t all about me. Maybe Beta Club and NHS didn’t really do a lot for me besides give me something to wear at graduation, but it’s what it did for others that mattered anyway. All the items I donated, the families we fed, the angel tree shopping and Christmas gift giving, that’s what mattered. That’s what changed lives. The help that SGA provided the teachers and school, the work we put in during homecoming week to make it fun and memorable, that’s what mattered. The friendships I made through the countless hours of serving together and playing together, those will be what make high school memorable and worth-while. The teachers and coaches that poured into me and invested in me to make me who I am is what mattered.

And that’s comforting knowing it wasn’t about me; it takes the pressure off. And while it’s a little frustrating knowing my achievements may not be remembered by anyone but me, it’s comforting to know my failures won’t either.

No one will remember the times I embarrassed myself, the times I got a bad grade on a test, the times I missed the shot I took. No one else will remember I didn’t get homecoming queen or valedictorian. Only I’ll remember that. But why should I? What is the point in remembering everything I didn’t do rather than what I did?

“The only time you should look back is to see how far you have come.”

So rather than sulking in what I didn’t do in high school, I won’t make the same mistakes again in college. And you shouldn’t either. That’s the other good news.

You get to start over. So do what you love. Since high school doesn’t matter anymore, you don’t have to be the same person. And because everyone figured that out in college, they don’t want to waste college either. Everyone does what they want and are who they want to be, and they leave you alone to do the same. So join the clubs you want to. Sing, dance or play an instrument. Play a sport. Or if you’ve spent all of high school hating those things, try something new. Popularity is a high school thing. In college there are too many people to know everyone and have a popular crowd, so there’s no point in trying to be cool. Confidence is cool. Kindness is cool. Success is cool. Loving people is cool.

Look back on high school if you want to. Remember the good, the friendships, the laughter. Remember your teachers and coaches. Remember the people who loved you and supported you. Remember what matters and what you love, and use that to guide your college experience.

And remember: “There are far greater things ahead than we ever leave behind.” – C.S. Lewis

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

Being a pharmacy technician never held as many risks as it does now. Exposure too hazardous conditions were little to none, and garbing up was only conducted in IV compounding. But, now, in order to give nurses the medications they need to help their patients, they need us, pharmacy technicians.

Keep Reading... Show less

Epic Activewear Deals Every Leggings-Lover Needs To Know About From Nordstrom's Biggest Sale

Wearing my pleather Alo leggings till someone physically removes them from my body.

I'll be the first to admit I'm not an athletic person, at all. Since junior high school, I've been happily cheering my friends on at their football games and soccer matches from the sidelines as long as I could go home to my yoga mat and spend Sunday mornings at Pilates with my mom's friends.

Weekends are often spent in my casual wear, from the second I throw them on for morning meditation through running errands and evening walks. No, I won't be running a marathon or joining my friend's volleyball league anytime soon.

Keep Reading... Show less

I've always been a huge Disney villain fan — whether it was for their cryptic one-liners, enviable outfits, or sidekick banter. Some of the most iconic lines from cinematic history have been said by the characters we love to hate and occasionally dress up as once a year.

The fear-mongering Gaston I now find hilariously cringe-worthy is now charming and oftentimes considered by fans as rightfully justified in his actions. Die-hard fans of the Disney villain fan club claim alternate egos in their favorite evil characters, adopting their hilarious witticisms into everyday life.

Keep Reading... Show less

TikTok was banned by the president, but Instagram is here with its newest feature called Reel. Many of us are still wondering why TikTok was being banned in the first place. Was it all the dangerous TikTok trends? It was because of a security concern, but not in the way you might think.

TikTok is owned by Dancebyte, which is a China-owned company. Basically, just like any other app, TikTok collects the user's data. The main question to ask yourself when investing in any app or marketing tools who will be owning my data? So yes, China currently owns all the TikTok user's data worldwide.

Keep Reading... Show less

Anyone who goes to Panera Bread will tell you that their mac and cheese is to die for. If you're a huge fan of their mac and cheese, you won't believe the new recipe they're coming out with!

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

5 Reasons To Put The Damn Mask On, And Stop Fussing With It

COVID-19 is real people, do your part to protect yourself and others.

Ilana Stein

With the ever-changing reality of our world due to COVID-19, there has been one constant throughout these past unforeseen months, masks. Ever since coronavirus hit the ground running in the US, the CDC has been recommending social distancing and mask-wearing to stop the rapid spread.

Many people have been great about adhering to these policies, mandates, and suggested uses, but others, not so much.

Keep Reading... Show less

I Asked My Boyfriend His Opinion On Liking Other Girls’ Pictures, And, Spoiler Alert, It's Cheating

"When you get into a relationship and you're in love, you have to realize that liking photos is for the single lifestyle."

Ladies, listen up. If you are in a relationship with a guy and he is liking other girls' pictures on social media, then it's a red flag. A man who can look at someone else and show interest by liking it means he doesn't care about your feelings AT ALL.

Keep Reading... Show less

I've been an athlete my entire life. I love movement and I've been jumping, kicking, swimming, dancing, throwing, you name it since I was in diapers. I'm also pretty competitive and probably went through a few sore loser phases. What can I say? I like to win, and losing can sometimes feel like I've failed. Especially, when your competitor is your best friend or someone that you worked all year long to defeat.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

11 Reasons Why Getting A Cat Is The Best Thing You Can Do For Your Mental Health

Cats may mess up your puzzles but they'll always love you unconditionally — as long as you have some catnip, that is.

Scout Guarino

Alright, everyone, it's time to stop spreading the rumor that all cats are mean, aloof, and hate everyone. Like dogs, each cat has its own personality and tendencies. Some like a lot of attention, some like less — each person has to find the right cat for them. As for me, my cats Bienfu and Reptar have seen me at my worst, but they've also helped pull me out of it. They're a constant in my life and they give me the strength to get through the day in spite of my depression, and there's even scientific evidence to support it!

Keep Reading... Show less

Picture this, we're settling into our date, the conversation is flowing, we're ordering drinks, laughing, and then it happens... the job convo.

Him: "So what do you do?"
Me: "I'm a dating and relationships editor."

Keep Reading... Show less

- I have extremely sensitive skin, which is why I have always resorted to a plant-based organic beauty line such as Radha Beauty.

- Radha Beauty won me over years ago when I was looking for organic skincare brands.

- I was so excited to see they launched a new line incorporating USDA organic rosehip oil, so when their PR team sent me some, I could not have been more thrilled.

- After a week of using the products, my face felt as smooth as a baby's, looked more glowy than ever, and even cured some of my summer sunburn.

Radha Beauty isn't just a best-selling beauty brand on Amazon — it's a USDA-certified organic beauty brand I live by, and anyone who knows me knows I am all about holistic wellness.

Typically, it only takes three days for me to tell if a skin product is working or not because I have extremely sensitive skin. It's also why I have always stuck by plant-based organic beauty lines such as Radha Beauty.

Keep Reading... Show less

I have definitely had my fair share of breakups. I broke up with my high school sweetheart my second semester of college (he was cheating on me), I had a breakup with another guy I thought I was going to marry, and others in between. Regardless of whether you're the one doing the dumping or being dumped, breakups can HURT.

Keep Reading... Show less

Social media is something many of us have been addicted to (whether we want to believe it or not) since the moment we got it. I remember getting Facebook at 10. Instantly I was hooked. I loved being able to share my life with people, a little too much in my opinion, and I loved being able to see how/what other people were doing all the time.

Keep Reading... Show less

I am not in any way any sort of medical expert. These are just some tricks that work for me and have worked for others who also suffer from anxiety. These may not work for everyone, but I do hope these help some people in their fight against anxiety.

Keep Reading... Show less

-Having struggled with acne prone skin for years, I was cautious to try a new serum on top of the other products I've come to trust.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments