High school forever

Max Minogue, Opinion Editor

Now that my days left in high school are in the single digits, I’m starting to realize that high school isn’t forever.

It’s hard to fathom; after all, I peaked here, so shouldn’t I stay in these hallowed halls until the end of time?

These last days are admittedly going by painfully slowly, and the spare hours each day have left a lot of time to reflect on the past four years.

I can honestly say that this past year was one of the best of my life, and that senior year has left high school painted as a far better experience than it would have been if my journey ended last year.

Heading into senior year, I had the mindset of clearing the year as quickly as possible.

My eyes were set on graduation from day one. Several times to several people, I talked about how “I didn’t come into senior year to make friends,” and how that was just too late in the game to do anything new.

To my dismay, I met far more people than I ever planned on. By senior year, the confines of social boundaries and friend groups are mostly wiped away. People are far less ‘high school’ than the years past, and therefore, more sociable than ever.

Thanks to this, I’ve been exposed to so many people from different backgrounds (at least, as diverse backgrounds as the New Trier district can have), and I’m grateful.

There are probably a dozen people that I only met or got to know this year that I feel like I’ve been friends with for years, many of whom I had classes with and interactions with beforehand.

For example, there was a girl in my English class last year that I never spoke to once.

Walking into the newsroom the first day of this past year, I had the fantastic interaction of talking about my past teacher, and saying, “Oh, were you in a different period?” She was in my class. It was an awkward interaction.

Now, after knowing each other for a year, we actually get along super well, and she’s become a close friend.

The same thing has happened several times to me, getting close to people that I never would have expected to.

In a way, this led to me realizing that people are pretty great and worth getting to know.

Through the first bits of high school, when social norms and general insecurity prevent connections between people, it’s a lot more difficult to genuinely get to know people.

Friend group boundaries are real and the number of people one can talk to is severely hampered.

The disintegration of the boundaries, however, quickly leads to new friendships and worthwhile connections.

I can honestly say that I’m happy to have met every person that I have throughout high school.

This has also led to an incredible new outlook that I have on other people.

Thanks to the past year, I view strangers as opportunities, people to actually get to know rather than people to pass in the hallways.

These experiences should change the way I go into college.

I plan on taking the advice that everybody told freshman me; getting involved, stepping out of my comfort zone, and meeting new people.

So, I guess, thank you New Trier, and class of 2017. Thank you all for being people worth getting to know.

Thank you for educating me as the whole person, and for providing activities that I can get involved in.

While high school can’t actually last forever, I plan on using what I learned here forfor the rest of my short, pointless life.