After 26 years of children in school, Alden brings the streak to a glorious end. There were a few hiccups along the way, but all in all, Houston County schools were good educators and mentors to my kids. Alden will graduate with honors and head to my former most hated school, the University of Georgia, come August. In celebration of that feat, she has written this week’s column about her memories of high school. I hope you enjoy it. – Kelly
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High school is the best four years of your life.
As an official high school graduate, I am reflecting back on the “best four years of my life” as they are no more.
Freshman year: I was a little cub in a cave full of scary upperclassmen and way too many classrooms. My big brother was a huge help, he ducked his head and acted like he had never seen me before! I learned quickly that there was no 500 hall or pool on campus, and that yes, freshmen are the bottom of the food chain. I settled in fast and was able to find my groove in FFA as a leader and a public speaker. I sat in the very back at football games and carried way too many binders.
Sophomore year: I moved up just a few rows in the esteemed student section. I took my first few AP classes and learned that school wouldn’t always be a breeze; I really did have to study for tests and quizzes. I cried when I failed a test or two, sorry Dad. I struggled with friendships as we all grew older and started to separate. I learned that sophomoric is synonymous with immature in my English class and experienced the reality of that throughout the year. I got my driver’s license, and didn’t get in a single fender bender or end up with any super speeders.
Junior Year: I was officially an upperclassman! I became close with my counselors and administration. My friends and I invited a new kid to sit with us at lunch and he became one of our best friends. I jumped into a few more AP classes and started on the Varsity Tennis Team, a sport I never played before. I stuck strong in FFA, winning a state competition, qualifying for nationals. I had an official friend group and even got in trouble here and there. I started prepping for college by taking standardized tests and visiting college campuses.
Senior Year: I walked in school on the first day wearing my Senior crown and with my Class of 2019 shirt on. It was a surreal feeling to be one of the oldest kids on campus, but I was ready to rock Senior Year’s socks off. I finally got to sit in the first row at football games! I applied to ONE college, but thankfully I got in. Go Dawgs! (Sorry Dad)! My amazing counselor nominated me as an Optimist Student of the Month, a lifelong dream of mine. I realized just how amazing teachers can be and just how hard Calculus really is. I cried and laughed throughout the year as I realized how fast time was flying by. I walked down the halls of my elementary school one last time in my cap and gown. I worked hard to keep that perfect GPA, even with Senioritis kicking in, which is a very, very real epidemic. But most importantly, I graduated.
Looking back, these were the best four years of my life. Every twist and turn along the journey helped me become the person I am today. I couldn’t have done this amazing trip without my family, friends, teachers, or classmates. As I look back on the last four years, I have nothing but fond memories filled with happiness. I can’t wait to see where the next four years at the University of Georgia take me and what happy memories I’ll be able to look back on in May of 2023.