Seniors are encouraged to pause, remember

As much as I would love to focus on college, high school keeps getting in my way. For every hour I need to spend applying to colleges and applying for scholarships, I have about three hours of homework for the place it seems I may never escape from.

Don’t get me wrong; I am actually trying to enjoy senior year. Occasionally, I succeed. I’m not usually a spontaneous person, but this year is encouraging me to live in the moment.

It’s scary to realize that my immediate situation has a time stamp on it. In a matter of seven short months, my fellow seniors and I will be graduating. Three months later, it’s off to college, time to embrace a new era of life.

As a senior, I have already had my last first day of high school. I’ve had my last Homecoming. I’ve bought my last parking permit (I was lucky enough to get a yearly–and no, that’s not a process I will miss). I’ve experienced my last Halloween at home, my last week-long Fall break. I’ve got one quarter down and three to go.

Three years ago, 12 quarters ago, I didn’t think I would ever get here. I couldn’t imagine myself a senior in high school. Of course, three years before that, I couldn’t imagine myself in high school at all.

Now, as I imagine myself in college, it’s different. I still don’t know where I’ll be. Naturally, as we are thrown into whatever school is designated for the area in which we live, we spend 12 years complaining about our school. Next year, if we complain, it will essentially be our fault for picking the “wrong” school. Thus, we shy away from the responsibility of deciding our future.

Though it is challenging, I want to enjoy this chaotic time of opportunity-searching and decision-making, when responsibility is being thrust onto my shoulders. Sometimes the best thing to do is to pause, to snap a mental photo of the moment.

It may be a crazy project; it may be an anticipated event. It may be a rainy day or a beautiful sunrise. It may be a frustrating day of college applications. It might not even make sense in the moment, but I know I will want to remember this.