By Alisha Dziennik
People say, “High school is the best four years of your life.” Well, here’s to the kids who are at the bottom of the social ladder; here’s to the kids that aren’t “popular”; here’s to the kids that found more comfort in books and music than real people: It gets better.
No, I don’t mean this in the way that counselors tell you, “It’ll be okay, it’ll get better.” No, I don’t mean this in the way your parents tell you, as your body is shaking from the sobs and you can hardly breathe, “It’ll get better, just push through it.”
What I mean by this is, no matter how bad you think this place is, you only have four years of high school. People grow up, or at least most of them do. After you leave here, all the times they whispered about you won’t matter. After you leave here, you define who you are-not them. After you leave here, the times you cried yourself to sleep won’t matter. After you leave here, the only thing that will matter is that you made it and you survived.
I’ve heard people say that there’s no point in trying because they’ve already wasted too much time, but that’s not the truth. There is always a point in trying because you need to get out. High school isn’t where you belong, but you do have to get through it. Don’t let the people who said you can’t succeed win because you can. You can get through this, I believe in you.
But what do I know, right? I’m just another one of the kids who “won’t even remember your name after we leave here,” right?
I was once where you are, and sometimes I still feel as though I’m still trapped in the never ending cycle of trying to please everyone around me and struggling to find happiness in myself. My freshman year, I was introduced to the public school system for the first time, and I was utterly lost. I can still feel this heavy weight on my chest as I think back on it. It was like I didn’t belong, like I was an outcast that no one would dare to be seen with.
People that I had gone to school with before, they wanted nothing to do with me. In fact, some of them were spreading lies about me. I didn’t understand why this was happening, and it only seemed to get worse.
I won’t pour out my whole sob story to you, but I hope you realize that I understand in some way how you’re feeling. I might not have walked your path or struggled the way you have, but I know that life gets hard. Life gets so unbelievably difficult and tiring, but it gets better. I’m here, at the end of my high school career, and have a group of friends I would do anything for. I know that they would do anything for me as well, so if I had to go through that torture to get to where I am, I would struggle again.
Before you know it, high school will be over and nothing those kids did or said will matter. Four years seems like an eternity when things are going wrong, but before you know it, it’ll already be over and gone. Don’t let them be the reason you don’t make it. Plaster a smile across your lips and just keep going.
Don’t give up, no matter what. Even when it seems as though the whole world is against you, you have to keep fighting back. Don’t let them win. Don’t let them see how broken they’ve made you. Don’t give them the satisfaction of watching that light go out. I’m here for you, and I know you can get through whatever struggles you’re going through.