Room 139


It seems like only a few weeks ago, I was sitting in Room 139 watching the 2017 seniors paint their bricks and prepare for their next steps beyond FHC. I was watching in admiration; I could not wait any longer for the glorious day when I would be able to paint my own brick and move on from high school. Although I was headed into my senior year just months from that moment, it seemed like worlds away.

Since sophomore year, I have fantasized about graduation day, announcing my college decision and life plans, planning my graduation party, and escaping from the Forest Hills “bubble.” Since sophomore year, when I began my journey in Room 139, I have looked at the colorful walls that surrounded me with the names of seniors who successfully managed to make important decisions and continue their next steps. Since sophomore year, I have been ready to walk out those doors.

But the closer I get to graduation the more I realize how little I know about myself and where I am going.”

I would have never imagined that in my last week of school, mere days before graduation, I would begin to feel the nostalgia of preparing to leave the familiar place. Between the issues I’ve had with friends, classes, and my personal life, I thought when the final days were among me, I’d be packing my things and running for the door. But the closer I get to graduation, the more I realize how little I know about myself and where I am going.

As I sit in Room 139 today, I look to my right and see a freshly painted pink patch on the wall. I’m astounded knowing that the new splotch of color on the beige brick is my own doing. I went to Hobby Lobby, strolled to the aisle with the acrylic paints, picked out four colors that fit me well, and began painting a few days later in Room 139. I’m not artistic. Calligraphy and tiny drawings are not my specialties, but still, I proceed with my work.

The better part of my last three years in school was spent in this room. I shed the most tears and laughed the most in Room 139. I have lost and found more of my things within these walls than I have throughout the entire rest of the school. I have less than a week left in this room, and it still feels like years. I suppose I am lucky that I have had something so good that is making leaving this place difficult. Room 139 has acted as a second home to me for three years. This is what I will miss most.

I’m not exactly sure how I made it to this day: my last day of high school classes. I feel as if the last four years were not even real, and there is no possible way I did it. I played the situation of taking graduation photos and walking across that stage over and over and over again in my head only to be reminded I still had weeks, months, and years. But here I am, days away from this thing that has consumed my thoughts for years. I’ve watched many others preparing for exactly what I am about to experience. I never thought it would finally be me.

I think stepping foot in Room 139 my sophomore year changed every aspect of my life. I don’t think I would have made it to graduation the same way without it and everyone in it. I can not even begin to thank Ken George enough for every single thing he has done for me both academically and personally. Words can’t describe how grateful I am for him being such an influential part of my high school career. Within the walls of Room 139 he taught me how to properly use a comma, he taught me to love semi-colons, he taught me about poetry and The Great Gatsby, and, most importantly, he taught me how to be the absolute best person I could ever be.

So thank you, Room 139, for being my locker, lunchroom, and the place I went to laugh and cry for the last three years.

I think I’m ready to freaking go.