An ode to FHC 

In honor of my final week of high school, I’d like to reflect on a plethora of moments and memories from freshman year to now.

The Beginning

I know the stigma around being a freshman is that it’s scary; you feel out of place, you’re awkward, you’re adjusting, whatever. What everyone fails to mention is the fact that it’s one of the best years of high school. Nobody talks about how exciting it is to finally leave middle school. Nobody talks about how fun the dances are when you’ve never been to one before. You hear about how freshman year is the worst: the classes get harder, and everyone yells, “Go, home freshman.” To all the fourteen-year-olds entering high school, enjoy every second. You don’t hear the chant, you’re just excited to finally have a spot in the student section.

My First Homecoming Week

The Sunday before Homecoming week began, a group of freshman girls and some seniors at the time had a sleepover. The senior girls gave us all the most embarrassing outfits to wear for each spirit day, and it was genuinely one of my favorite weeks of freshman year, even though I showed up Monday morning in a floor-length nightgown. Every year, homecoming week is one of the best, and I’ll always look back on my first spirit week, homecoming assembly, game, and dance fondly.

When Sloane Caught Up

At this point, I’m listing high school events in chronological order that stand out to me, and I simply cannot leave this out, but I’m going to keep it short because I don’t particularly want to rehash this event in detail. My sister, my little, baby sister, grew taller than me about halfway through my freshman year. She was twelve. Sloane, you will always be my little sister, no matter how much bigger you get.

My First Last Day

I’ve loved school since I was in elementary, so I guess my opinion is biased, but I was a little sad leaving freshman year. I really liked being a ninth grader, and I made a lot of friendships that year that I kept throughout high school. Upon taking our final exams, my friends and I got in my mom’s car and she drove us an hour to the beach. I will always remember the constant search for rides, and as a senior, I kind of miss the stress and excitement of finding people to take us places.

The Day I Got My License

If you’re close to me, or if you literally sat anywhere near me in any class leading up to my sixteenth birthday, you’ve likely watched me cry or stress out about the driver’s test. I know you’re not really supposed to say these things out loud, but I kind of feel like it’s a flaw in the system that I was able to get my license. Anyways, I’ve grown a lot in my skills and (knock on wood) have never been in an accident. If you’ve ever seen me park in the school lot, sorry.

The Shut Down

How initially exciting it was, thinking we got two extra weeks of spring break–little did we know it would be months of distance from our friends and family. Sophomore year was my absolute favorite year of high school, and I’ll always be sad it got cut short. The lasting effects of the pandemic cut into my junior year, which was, for the most part, hybrid, and I just feel blessed that the Class of 2022 was able to experience a mostly normal senior year.

John Moved Away

My older brother and I have always been close, and I won’t lie, I shed a lot of tears when he packed up his stuff and moved all the way to North Carolina. High school was better when John was there with me, and even though I’m beyond proud of him and know he’s exactly where he’s supposed to be, a selfish part of me wishes he stayed here, in Michigan, with me.

Joining Staff

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again—there’s no room at FHC like Room 139. I took a chance and joined staff at the beginning of my junior year, and I’m so thankful I did. Thank you, TCT staff, for being the most welcoming, kind, supportive people. Thank you to Mr. George for pushing me and growing my linguistic abilities immensely. Because of all of you, I have a future I’m excited for; I never would’ve embraced my love for writing and words without you. 

Fake Prom

Last year, because of capacity regulations and social distancing, Prom was seniors only. Because you only get two Proms in your lifetime, my friends and I decided to create our own personal Prom. We bought dresses, made a reservation, rented a tent, and got to dance and have fun with around sixty of our friends. Though it was a lot of planning, I’m glad my friends and I took the time and energy to experience the junior Prom we weren’t able to attend. I’ll always be thankful to have a group of friends that make the most of everything.

Tournament of Champions

Every year, Mr. Anderson’s AP World History class crescendos into a bracketed tournament where everyone drafts an event, person, or figure and takes on the challenge of debating its historical significance. On draft day, I was at the dentist, so I was assigned the potato. I was pretty disappointed initially, but I, like many others, underestimated the influence of the potato. I learned so much researching the potato and all of my opponents, and I had such a fun time doing it. I’ll always be grateful for Mr. Anderson for making this class enjoyable and still educational. I wore my medal all day after winning with the potato, and then, I wrote my college essay about it.

My Last First Day

As much as I love summer, come August, I was ready for senior year to begin. It’s sort of a senior tradition for people to dress-up in different themes with their friends on the first day, so a group of my girlfriends and I dressed up in 60s dresses. We wore the printed dresses, gogo boots, and even headbands/sunglasses. We had a lot of fun with it, and our ID cards are proof of that.

Final Football Season

This year, along with Joe Murdock, Josh Smith, and Kenzie Hushak, I was one of the student section leaders. I’ve always loved dressing up for football games, and it was really fun being able to be a part of the process of picking the themes of each game this year. Cheering in the front of the stands with my closest friends every Friday of the first few months of my final year was truly unforgettable. 

Homecoming Court

The Friday before homecoming week, I was nominated to be on court, which was so exciting. The Class of 2022 is incredibly kind and involved, so I was honored to be a part of it. Being able to watch our last Homecoming game on the field was such a special experience. I’m beyond grateful to have been recognized with that group of students, representing our school and grade specifically.

The Acceptance

On Jan. 28, 2022, I was accepted into my top school. I have wanted to attend The University of Michigan since I was a freshman, and I spent a large portion of my summer before senior year working on my college application. One of my closest friends was a freshman at U of M this past year and absolutely loved it, which made me want to go all the more. This was such an awarding day and hands down one of the most exciting parts of my senior year. 

Senior Spring Break

Around fifty seniors from FHC went to Riviera Maya, Mexico this year for spring break. The only way I can truly encapsulate this experience is by saying it was like a week-long sleepover with a bunch of people you see at school every day. We all had a lot of fun in Mexico, and I’m thankful to have been able to travel with all my friends before we part ways next year.

The End

I’ve never liked goodbyes, but I definitely didn’t think “Goodbye, high school” would be a sad one. Reflecting on my time at FHC, I realize it’s not just the comfort of this building and these people that I’ll miss, but also the person I am here at this time. In this stage of my life, I’m ever changing; I know I’ll never be this person again, not exactly at least. While I leave behind my school, my teachers, the people I grew up with, and living with my family, in a way, I’m also leaving a part of myself. It’s bittersweet, but I’m excited to be the new me; I’m excited to be in a new place with the new people living my new life. As this chapter of my life approaches, I’d like to thank everyone who made my high school journey an experience to look back on with warm memories and pride. To my peers who made me laugh and smile, to the teachers that helped me grow, to the incredible staff I was lucky to write with, thank you. Thank you for sparking my intellectual interests, thank you for giving me life long friends, thank you for making me who I am today. For the past four years of immeasurable joy and for the path that led me to my dream school, thank you. Farewell, FHC.