Reflections on High School

Literature Default
a personal essay by Ella Ip

Dear Asian Youth,


As I was sitting in my first-period class prior to my spring break, I thought about how close I was to graduation. My entire senior year felt discombobulated as I was separated from my friends and participated in school through a computer screen. I’ve become accustomed to it, of course, but I felt as if my true “high school experience” stopped in my junior year. I, along with everyone else, was relegated to stay within their rooms and isolate themselves. I can’t help but wonder about what memories or events I missed out on being inside. There are a few things I am grateful for: I had more time to self-care, I didn’t have to take the SAT, and I spent more time with my guinea pigs. But there were so many things lost as well.


I remember being unbearably shy and anxious as a freshman, feeling the jitters and expectations of high school as I walked through the doors on my very first day. For me, the hardest thing was putting myself out there and being vulnerable. I attended the same elementary school since I was in second grade and I really didn’t know anyone outside of it. I had all the worries of whether or not I would make friends, do well in school, participate in activities, etc. because I was scared of leaving something I knew for something unknown . However, once I integrated into my new surroundings and made friends, I felt my own version of the “high school” experience taking shape. Of course, it wasn’t exactly how the movies made it out to be, but it was authentic.


In a way, I am both scared and relieved to say goodbye to my high school life. I feel as though I didn’t experience enough to prepare myself for the next step and that I’m running out of time to tie up loose ends. I’m grateful for all of my positive moments and even negative moments. I wish I had branched out more and met more people because I think I over focused on school. I hope this coming spring I can live fully and make the best of my situation. Life will never be as perfect as they say.


Sincerely,

Ella


Cover Photo Source: https://www.saatchiart.com/art/Painting-Graduate/871553/4308876/view