Class of 2016: When All is Said and Done

July 18, 2016

The end of high school reminds me of the 2008 film Mamma Mia. It's a little old now, but a classic nevertheless. Like in the film, as the old generation of friends, relationships, and problems met the friends, relationships, and problems of the new, I'm making the nerve-wracking transition from one place to the next. I am venturing from old and familiar, to new and uncertain. And while the future is brimming with possibilities, new people and endless pursuits of knowledge, I find myself only thinking of the past.

In the few short weeks since graduation, I've bumped into old friends and acquaintances, met old neighbours after a 15-year gap and have found old photos that I never knew I had. Each encounter has made me understand what makes high school so memorable for so many. This strange, often prison-like place, made the High School Musical's East High Alumni sing and dance, while it drove those in Mean Girls' North Shore High School mad and filled Bring It On's Rancho Carne High School with pride. Saying, "I just graduated high school" to adults, elicits various reactions. While some responded with a sigh and launched into a tirade of all the wrong-doings that befell them during their stay there. Others smiled and I watched as they grew younger before my very eyes, swept up in the memory of their own time spent there. From my close ones, the response was often delayed but accompanied by gifts in the form of stories, old pictures, a special dinner, an impromptu visit or even a Starbucks gift card.


High school is a shared experience no matter how good or bad, or unimpressive it was -- movies gave me false hope for all of the awesomeness that was supposedly in store. High school is a short, shared experience. It's a brief respite in the midst of the whirlwind of a world we live in. It's sort of like a 4-year long panoramic shot. It's a place which captures a short timeframe of each of our lives, yet stimulates so much growth. When trying to describe high school I think Mr. Charles Dickens said it best,"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness." Most answers fit along the spectrum ranging from it was so much fun, to it flat-out sucked. To me, it was just interesting. It was a nice stepping stone bringing us all from pre-pubescence, through adolescence and now hopefully into an equally as interesting "adulthood".

~Alexandra XO

Psst... For more high school nostalgia check the blog post on my friend Mary's blog Counting to MD titled An Ending and A Beginning.

What one word would you use to describe your high school experience?