What Junior Year Has Taught Me

Rene Maier, Staff Writer

As the first semester of my junior year comes to an end, I have been looking back at the last couple of months, and it is astonishing to think about how much I have grown. I have become more of myself, more of what I know I am. I have gained friends along the way and I am also trying new things, and reaching out to people instead of only talking to the people that I am comfortable around.

In the years past, I have always tried to make my public image something like that of others. I tried to be like my peers because growing up if you were different you would be one of the kids picked on during recess. But now I’m older, and yes, I know that I still have a lot of growing up to do, but I feel like being different in today’s society is no longer frowned upon. If you act the way that you want to act, post the things that you want to post, and dress the way that you want to dress you find the people that complement you. You find the people that are going to be your true friends after you graduate high school and maybe even longer. Both girls and boys put on a front to make other people like them; we have all done it before, especially when we are talking to someone and want to impress them… but why? Why do we have to change ourselves to make someone interested in us? I understand changing small things, but to change your whole personality, and even drop friends because this other person doesn’t like them is kind of ridiculous.

To love everything about yourself and not make sacrifices for other people, especially in high school and especially when you are an upperclassman is something that is hard to do. We all want to be liked, we all want to be popular. But, some of us have a year left and others only a couple months, so why try to impress these people when you most likely will never seem that after graduation unless they were friends to begin with? I have found out who my true friends are this year, the people that will be by my side for a long time even after graduation and, in all honesty it feels really good. It feels like I finally have people that understand me and will be there no matter what stupid things I might do, or say. And who will also be there when I beat myself up because of the stupid things I do.

Being okay with myself and the things that are special about me has really helped me be a more outgoing person. I don’t know if I realized that I only have a year left of high school and this is the time to be outgoing and have fun or if I realized it because of taking the PSAT, either way it’s crazy to think that I will be out of Forest Hills in a year. Growing up in “the bubble” it feels like these are the people that we will be with for the rest of our lives but in reality they won’t be, so just be yourself and be true to you.