How Junior Year Really Went
May 23, 2018
Eleventh grade is notorious for being the most trying, stressful year of high school. In August, I was absolutely sure that my junior year would be the exception. I was overly confident that I could completely reinvent my time management skills and balance a social life, good grades, and an adequate amount of sleep. After living through it, I have definitely been humbled.
Going into high school, my plan was to try everything I found remotely interesting and from there, narrow the list down to what I loved. Along the way, I picked up interests (some would say too many) and ran with them. I found a passion for politics in Youth in Government, a love for service in Junior Civitan, and an aptitude for writing concise, often witty little articles in the publications class. I found that I was naturally good at science and realized my desire to end up in STEM. All of these understandings gathered through experience have played a role in how I define myself today. My answer to the question who am I? has changed about one hundred times since freshman year, and I grow to like my answer more with each new realization.
This year, I met my ultimate high school goal of being a Junior Marshal. I often wonder if I made the right choice to care so deeply about my grades. I have always been overly concerned about my grades, finding much of my worth in my GPA. As this year kicked off, I knew that I would have to make some serious sacrifices to keep my ranking in the junior class. I was taking more difficult classes and worried about the toll it would take on my well-being.
How did I make it through? I think it was my need to know everything. I have always been on this quest for knowledge. Learning is exciting for me; I want to know everything I can because I have the opportunity to soak it all in. It was terrifying to think that junior year could ruin it for me, so I poured myself into my classes for fear of empty lectures and boring assignments. I made connections, I found interesting pieces of information that would carry me through a class, and I asked lots of questions. I learned the importance of dance breaks during homework and of writing out problems on a dry-erase board when necessary. If I could do it all over again, I would probably choose not to.
Next year, I’ll be a senior. I will enter the halls of Wade Hampton for my final year with the same overconfidence as I had this year. And I will be enchanted with my disappointment when my year doesn’t work out as planned.