Laura Catron ‘17– Senior year never seems real until one personally experiences it. It remains an abstract concept in the mind. How does it feel to be almost done? After eighteen years of familiarity, how does one cope with the knowledge that soon their entire life will be turned upside down?

Personally, I’m sighing with relief.

Since before 6th grade I stressed about my GPA and which classes to take and how my extracurriculars would look to admission counselors in prestigious colleges halfway across the country, but not anymore. Never again do I have to take the SAT for ten more points. Thinking about it actually makes me want to cry tears of joy.

When the time comes, I know I’ll cry out of sadness too. After all, graduation means never again seeing some of my friends, and I don’t even know which ones. From then on, any interaction between classmates will take effort on both parties’ behalf, even if it’s just over Facebook. So many relationships formed only because people happened to be in the same class or lunch period. Our friendships came from habit, so I wonder how many will be lost without that frequency of interaction.

Both the best and worst times of my life (so far) took place within Romeo High School. Senior year treats me well, but high school as a whole greatly enjoyed beating me down. If someone told me during sophomore year that I was going to graduate, I wouldn’t have believed them. But amazingly, I’m here. But despite my pride, I don’t want to linger.

The farther away I travel from that time, the better. The longer I stay, the more the two extremes of best and worst run together. Leaving will finally let me differentiate and contemplate each separately. Obviously I hope the future restrains itself from topping my worst experiences, but I know for certain that even better times lie ahead. Sheer force of will, at the very least, will keep me from peaking in high school.

To those without the same obsessive determination and are, perhaps more reasonably, nervous about what the future holds, I offer a quote from my favorite poet, Erin Hanson.

“What if I fall?

Oh, but my darling what if you fly?”

 


Morgan Brown ‘17– Senior year is terrifying. In just one year, we finalize our grades and test scores to a point of satisfaction, apply to colleges, apply for scholarships, and eventually choose the place where we want to continue our education. Essentially, within our final year of high school, we choose our future.

In just a few months, seniors face arguably the hardest challenge of their final year: coming to terms with leaving Romeo and beginning their own independent lives.

For a while, I ignored the fact that I’m leaving my school and home in just a matter of months. I blew it off as something to face later. Now, it’s a reality.

Now that I chose to go to Hope College, the prospect of leaving for college sounds more exciting than ever before. I cherish the idea of living on my own, starting over, finding a group of new friends, and learning about topics that genuinely interest me. I know that getting out of Romeo will expand my horizons and allow me to grow as a person without dependence on others.

However, I know that as soon as the last bell rings on my last day at Romeo, reality will hit, and I will more than likely burst out in tears.

As much as I complain about Romeo, this school and this town have created amazing memories and experiences for me that I never want to let go of.

Being a part of Romeo is truly the best thing to ever happen to me. My family is here, my home is here, and I will be excited to return here during every break in college. Romeo holds all of my memories, and while I look forward to making new ones in Holland, I don’t want to lose my old ones.

Walking around Romeo, I know how to find every teacher’s classroom. I know most students’ names, and I know some of their stories. I know that during rough times, teachers and administrators will willingly talk me through issues. I know that when I walk into a classroom, it won’t be a lecture hall of hundreds of people, but a small, tight-knit class with, typically, at least one of my friends.

Although it’s not always obvious, the little family of Romeo has a bond like no other school around, and while college is a place to form special, close relationships, you could meet fifty new people every day and still not have met everyone. That scares me.

Even in this small school, I see so many people that I would’ve loved to get to know (but I’ve been too shy to speak to) that I may never see again. I also befriended people at this school that I genuinely care for that I worry about falling out of touch with. College begins this process all over again.

College brings a lot of new changes, and I’m not a big fan of change. Change terrifies me; it affects our whole lives. College to me symbolizes leaving people and a home behind, but it also symbolizes a new beginning.

While I find myself hesitant and sad to leave Romeo, my home, I’m hopeful for what the future will bring.

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