These songs comprise my musical identity and the personal journey I’ve taken during my time at Northwestern. The songs I screamed and danced along to at concerts, listened to on my 30-minute walk to class, woke up to in my morning Snapchats (if you know, you know)…Making these playlists is one of my favorite traditions. Although the tracks don’t coordinate with the seasons at all, the playlists bring me back to all of the great times I’ve had so far. Continue reading
One of the drawbacks of such a small class size is that you have a limited pool of peers to be influenced by, to draw inspiration from and to compare yourself with. Continue reading
One final blog post about senior year and graduating, I promise.
1) I think I have finally figured out why the college process can induce so much stress. The essence of college admissions is comparison, the root of all unhappiness.
Without comparing students to one another, colleges wouldn’t be able to coherently choose candidates for admission, and we know that.
We would never be dissatisfied with our own accomplishments if we didn’t look around and see what others have done with their lives.
I think my college is fantastic, but when I remember that I have friends going to Harvard, I can’t help but feel a bit petty compared to others.
I started debate in 8th grade, but my mom was actually the one who pushed me to join. I wanted to quit before freshman year but I was convinced by one of my friends to stay a little longer; ironically, she quit before her sophomore year, but I’m still here.
In prioritized order:
1. Go to a poetry slam
2. Perform in our school’s talent show – this I have put off for 7 semesters
3. Start exercising regularly
4. Run a marathon
5. Attend an EDM concert Continue reading
People are finding out about their colleges and
on one hand, I am so happy for them.
But at the same time, I want to rip my hair out
Because I have hallucinated 6 times today
Cruelly rejected myself 3 times and
Twice ecstatically accepted myself and
Once cold-bloodedly deferred myself.
Tomorrow seems to be a path with two forks in the road
leading in opposite directions.
It’s the weekend after Thanksgiving, and the beginning of December. More importantly, this is YOUR December. Can you believe that we only have one more month until 2014? Do you remember the resolutions that you made for this year? Are we at all closer to our goals?
No matter, because December is a special time of year.
Students, this is the time where winter break is fast approaching and you can almost imagine yourself sprawled out on your couch with food, watching TV, but with one last, minor hurdle to overcome: exams…
My friends and I are counting down the days until the first semester of senior year ends, until we can officially declare ourselves “second semester seniors.” Maybe then, I’ll be able to go on a proper vacation, because I haven’t gone on one in a few years, unless you count exhausting debate tournaments or college trips.
And the college process itself is brutal. I don’t hate colleges, I just abhor the process itself. The colleges themselves are merely wonderful institutions full of opportunities, but the process seems to have brought out the worst in all of us. It has torn families apart, it has stressed me out beyond belief, and it has scared me to death. Peers, who used to look out upon the world with wide and innocent eyes, now squint at the sun and scurry back inside to slave away at their homework (a little exaggeration, but that’s honestly what it feels like). My college counselor puts it simply: we are, but should try not to, sell our souls to the devil.
Is it too extreme to say that I no longer believe in altruism anymore? Maybe I’ve been feeling too pessimistic, but it seems like every service project, every volunteer opportunity, every leadership position has just become a row on a Common App, a check on a box, a mask for something to augment, to boost, to plump up someone’s college application.
Senior year. What do people cleverly name their senior year photo albums on Facebook? The beginning of the end? Yeah, something like that.
I’m only a few months into the beginning of the end and already, it’s starting to overwhelm me. I think we get so caught up in everything – the prospect of college, never seeing people again – that we freak out and don’t take the time to fully appreciate our very last year in high school.
For most of us seniors, it’s a drastic change. If we’re not moving out of the state, then we’re at least moving out of our homes. It means saying good bye to our bathrooms, bedrooms, Saturday morning routines, and basically any lifestyle to which we were previously accommodated. Continue reading
That was yesterday. I don’t know why schools have arbitrarily decided to throw their students back into school on random weekdays, but hey, why fight it?
We started off the day with some gate-cheering; the seniors assembled bright and early at the school gates, cheering incoming newbies with signs and noisemakers and elaborate getups. Unfortunately, I was fighting a sore throat and aching joints so I slept in and missed that one.
I have a free first period of the day. I’m not sure if I like this or not, because it could either entail really good things for my productivity or really bad things. We’ll see how that operates. In fact, I’m writing this post during my first period free.
Met my teachers, met my teachers, blah blah blah. They all seem very pleasant and genuine, but hey, it is the first day of senior year, right? I’m sure anything and everything that happens to me will be bathed in the light of seniority. Nonetheless, my teachers all seem optimistic and eager to teach, which gave me this awesome vibe about the strong start that I wanted to get to this year, that I haven’t felt much in years past.
Then…came the pep rally. This is where the seniors storm the basketball court in their senior t-shirts with face paint and firefighter helmets (as was our theme this year), and where the awkward kids sort of just lounge around in the back of the crowd. I was towards the back. Promptly after this was over, we all went to go sit in the bleachers, while our class presidents announced the games…
And they called my name. At first, I thought that I had misheard one of them. But then the people around me turned towards me and started cheering. Up I stood, and through the row of people I stumbled over, cursing myself for choosing to sit in the very middle of the row. These were light and silly gamed, half-rigged so that the seniors would win everytime, arbitrarily decided when it came pretty close.
I played the game (dressed up in a feather boa, angel wings, and a witches hat and then spun around with a baseball bat) and turned towards the crowd of seniors and motioned victoriously after the seniors inevitably won (the other grade levels were purposely disadvantaged) and the crowd…just exploded.
Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t get up in front of major crowds very often. Well, I do for things like debate and giving speeches, but not usually in a peppy sense. Maybe it’s because normally sports players get called up, and people in my social group rarely make enough social waves to even be considered for the picking.
Whatever the case, I have no opinion on the matter. The experience was both fun, yet slightly embarrassing. But different in years past, I walked back to my spot in the middle of the bleacher row with more confidence than I usually emanate, and people took notice. I think it was a mixture of newfound seniority and not caring as much what people thought of me. It has taken me a long time, and I’m nowhere close to where I’d ideally like to be in my self-consciousness, but I am on my way to full on not letting others’ opinions get to me. It’s a weird feeling.